NVJ / Flickr, Creative Commons

 Many residents of unincorporated parts of Butte County are getting used to a new routine on trash day, if not a new trash day altogether. Plans to divide up the county into three separate areas and grant exclusive fiefdoms to the different companies that used to compete took effect this week.

California’s farms and, increasingly, urban residents will be dependent on groundwater reserves for water supplies as parched conditions continue into a fourth year. Meanwhile, long-term plans to help ease California’s chronic water shortages took another small step forward. 

Hopes for enough rain and snow to break the ongoing drought have gone from doubtful to nearly unfathomable as winter yields week after week of unusually warm and dry weather.

thinkpanama / Flickr, Creative Commons

 “Flipping” is what the real estate industry calls it when you buy a home and then sell it again with a 12-month period. 

“Indicating someone who’s buying the property, presumably fixing it up and then selling it for a profit,” says Daren Blomquist with RealtyTrac


The research firm’s latest data show about 5,500 California properties were flipped during the fourth quarter of last year. Blomquist says that was a little more than 7.5 percent of all single-family home sales.

Jim Hutchison / Flickr, Creative Commons

West Nile virus cases more than doubled in California last year, with nearly 800 cases being reported. That’s the highest number since 2005. While there could be many reasons for the spike in cases, the one experts are pointing to most might surprise you — it’s California’s drought. 


That may seem a little counterintuitive considering West Nile virus is spread by mosquitos, and mosquitos need water to breed, but if you think about it, says Chico State professor of virology Troy Cline, it actually makes sense.  

Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko will be recognized this weekend by the California Rifle and Pistol Association as Peace Officer of the Year for his efforts to support gun rights, hunting and fishing.  

“I’m very humbled by it and very honored to receive that,” Bosenko said.

Morgan McGaughlin of the CRPA says Bosenko was chosen from among several candidates and will receive the award at an annual banquet in Southern California on Saturday.

Although there will be no changes in Shasta or Butte County, several changes to the California State Responsibility Area are proposed for other North State counties, including Tehama. The California Board of Forestry and Fire Protection will hold a public hearing in Redding on Thursday to go over those changes. The hearings are part of the board’s process for making changes to the state’s SRA. Those living in State Responsibility Areas will be subject to the controversial Fire Protection Fee, while those living outside those areas will not.