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KPAY News Archives for 2022-05

CDC Confirms Calif Monkeypox Case

The CDC is confirming the first case of monkeypox in California. Health officials say the patient from Sacramento County recently traveled in Europe. A health provider alerted the county of the suspected case earlier this week. The California Department of Public Health lab also received a test sample to confirm the case. The person is isolated at home. Health officials believe the risk to the general public is "extremely low."

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True Alliance/Torres Shelter Seeks Donations

Chico's True North Housing Alliance is asking the community for donations to help keep its services running. They are hoping to raise $400,000 within the next 100 days. An official says they have been placing more people than ever before into the Torres Community Shelter since Chico began re-enforcing its anti-camping ordinances, and they expect the demand to increase. Donations can be made on their website at truenorthbutte.org/donate.

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More of State Extreme Drought

Twelve-percent of California is now in the highest drought stage. For the first time since the record storms back in December, a portion of the State has fallen into exceptional drought, the worst level on the drought scale. Twelve-percent of California, mostly in the Central Valley, is in the highest drought level, and another 48-percent is in the second highest category, extreme drought. Only two counties, covering two and a half percent of the State, are in moderate drought status, Del Norte and San Diego Counties.

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State Assembly Bill to Protect Abortion Providers

Lawmakers in the state Assembly have voted to stop courts in other states from penalizing abortion providers and volunteers in California. The bill is part of Democrats' plan to make California a sanctuary for women seeking abortions should the U.S. Supreme Court overturn Roe v. Wade. A Texas law lets people sue people who provide or aid in abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected. Monday, lawmakers voted to ban enforcing those judgements in California courts. Abortion opponents say the bill is illegal because the U.S. Constitution requires states to recognize the laws of other states. But Democrats believe the bill would be allowed under an exception.

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Shasta Co Man Guilty of Arson Charges In National Forests

A man is pleading guilty to setting multiple fires in a Shasta Co Natioanl forest. Forty-one-year-old Eric Smith pled guilty to four counts of setting fire to federal land Monday after officials said he ignited eleven fires in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest in 2019 and 2020. The U-S Forest Service says most of the fires were put out before growing more than an acre, but one blaze in July 2020 forced part of Interstate Five to shut down. Smith is facing up to twenty years in prison and a one-million-dollar fine.

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Newsome HInts at Water Restrictions

(AP) Gov. Gavin Newsom says he may impose mandatory water restrictions if people don't start using less as a drought drags on. He raised the possibility Monday in a meeting with local water agencies that supply major urban centers like Los Angeles and San Francisco. The Democratic governor has called for a 15% voluntary reduction in water use but has so far avoided mandatory, sweeping cuts to water use. He may be changing his approach after water use went up dramatically in March. He's urging the local water agencies to ramp up their conservation messaging to avoid the need for mandatory restrictions.

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BIden Admin Invokes Defense Production Act

President Biden is also launching Operation Fly Formula to use federal planes to bring formula in from abroad. Biden said he understands parents are worried about finding formula for their babies and added his team is doing everything they can to make sure everyone has access to formula. It has been reported that over 40-percent of the supply of baby formula nationwide is out of stock because of this shortage.

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Senate Confirms Calif Native American Federal Judge

The Senate is confirming California's first ever Native American federal judge. On Wednesday, Sunshine Suzanne Sykes was confirmed to a lifetime seat on the U.S. District Court for California's central district. The vote was 51-to-45. Sykes is also just the fifth Indigenous woman to serve on a federal court in U.S. history.

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Red Flag Warnings through Weekend

Fire danger in Northern California is going up. Due to high heat, northerly winds and dry grass, a Red Flag Warning is going into effect Thursday. This is an alert for everyone to refrain from outdoor burning and be cognizant of activities that can produce sparks. Some areas that received normal rainfall are better off, but places like Redding are thirteen inches below normal. National Weather Service meteorologist Scott Rowe explains the northerly winds combined with low humidity has caused the serious conditions. The fire risk is expected to last through early next week.

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Gov Newsome Proposes Pot Tax Break

Gov. Gavin Newsom is proposing a temporary tax cut for California's ailing marijuana industry, but businesses say it falls short of what's needed to revive the shaky pot economy. Broad legal sales began in 2018, but the industry has struggled with hefty taxes, regulation and competition from a vast illegal marketplace. The administration will recommend eliminating the cultivation tax. But a later increase would come in the retail excise tax to make up for those funds, possibly as soon as 2024. Jerred Kiloh of the United Cannabis Business Association says the plan would not cut consumer prices or lure buyers back from the underground market.

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Overdose Deaths at Community Park

Chico police are investigating two suspected drug overdose deaths at Community Park after several people were found unconscious and not breathing. The incident was reported Sunday just before 1:30 p.m. Police found four people in distress at Community Park on Dr. Martin Luther King Junior Parkway. Emergency personnel performed CPR and administered several doses of Narcan, the drug used to reverse the effects of opioids. Police said two people died at the scene and two other people were rushed to the hospital.

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