Tuesday, January 17, 2017     Volume: 17, Issue: 45
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Weekly Poll
What do you think needs more funding in 2017?

Local parks,we need more and easier access!
Behavioral Wellness and housing for those with mental illnesses.
Road maintenance. Too many potholes!
My beer budget.

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Getting by: Local volunteers help the Central Coast's working poor survive

Cover Story

Getting by: Local volunteers help the Central Coast's working poor survive

By RYAH COOLEY

Between the holiday good will and cold weather, winter is a time when the plight of the homeless population is on our collective consciousness—even in sunny Santa Maria. As the rainfall increases, warming shelters spring up across Santa Barbara County for the season. But inside apartments and houses across the Central Coast, a different kind of hardship can be foun... [ Read More ]

Top 5 Articles

News: Sewing support: Angel Gowns for Dignity offers comfort to grieving mothers
Cover Story: Santa Barbara County Education Office's volunteer programs inspire students and local businesses to make connections
News: Lawsuit alleges Santa Barbara County Jail denied inmate medical care
News: Santa Maria aims to curb youth violence
News: Marian Regional Medical Center fined for botched hysterectomy
 

News

Santa Maria aims to curb youth violence

By BRENNA SWANSTON

Santa Maria saw its first aggravated assault case of 2017 on Jan. 3, when two minors ages 15 and 16 were dropped off at the intersection of El Camino and Thornburg streets wit...

Prominent Lompoc man pleads guilty to child molestation

By BRENNA SWANSTON

Anthony Durham faces 45 years to life in state prison after pleading guilty to 17 counts of child molestation, according to a press release from the Santa Barbara County Distr...

Marian Regional Medical Center fined for botched hysterectomy

By DAVID MINSKY

The California Department of Public Health cited Marian Regional Medical Center on Dec. 17 for a surgical operation in 2014 that left a medical device inside a woman’s a...

Lawsuit alleges Santa Barbara County Jail denied inmate medical care

By DAVID MINSKY

An inmate who said a Santa Barbara County Jail deputy forced him to carry heavy items following his hernia surgery and denied him proper medical care afterward is suing the co...

Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office online crime reporting now available

By BRENNA SWANSTON

Santa Barbara County residents can file incident reports to the Sheriff’s Office online, following the office’s Jan. 10 release of its citizen online reporting sys...

Restricted access: Use conflicts and lack of funding affect access to public recreational spaces in Santa Barbara County

By DAVID MINSKY

It’s hard to play sports in the rain, but it’s even harder to play at a park that’s ankle deep in water—or even deeper by the time you read this. Recen...

Political Watch 1/12/17

• Abel Maldonado, former California lieutenant governor and former Santa Maria mayor, is emerging as the front-runner for President-elect Donald Trump's choice of nominee...

Sewing support: Angel Gowns for Dignity offers comfort to grieving mothers

By BRENNA SWANSTON

It all began with a Facebook post. In April 2014, Micci Robertson used the social media platform to share her personal story: She had miscarried three times, and wanted o...

Coast Guard volunteers share the burden of protecting the Central Coast by sea

By DAVID MINSKY

Volunteers appointed to the service of the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) are often paid, but then there are those who aren’t, like the men and women in the USCG Auxiliary....

Santa Barbara County Education Office's volunteer programs inspire students and local businesses to make connections

By EDEN HOOD

Young students can always use some help with homework, but sometimes their teachers need help too. Thanks to the Santa Barbara County Education Office’s Partners in ...

Biz Spotlights

Spotlight on: Skyway Center

By DAVID MINSKY

The corner of Skyway and Broadway languished for several years following the Great Recession, but construction of the new Skyway Center there will bring a facelift and new com...

Commentary

The value of an arts education

By BILL CIRONE

We all know that when school budgets get tight, art and music education are early casualties. Traditionally, schools and classrooms are rated according to how students perform...

Letters

About walls

By Justin M. Ruhge - Concerned Taxpayers I.N.C., Lompoc

If Mexico were a prosperous, safe, and peaceful neighbor like Canada, the U.S. would not need to control the border with it. But Mexico and the Central American states are out...

Michelle in 2020!

By Bill Denneen - Nipomo

Our first lady, Michelle Obama, would be ideal to replace President-elect Trump when his term is up in four years. Her great-great-grandfather was a black slave. We have come ...

Sports

Semi-pro days: Former Santa Maria Redskins and Hawks football players to share teams' history at Jan. 14 Valley Speaks

By PETER JOHNSON

Did you know Santa Maria once had two professional football teams? I know—neither did we!  They were "semi-pro" teams, actually. So, in other words, no ...

Alexis Garcia

By PETER JOHNSON

Before winter season began, Alexis Garcia, Nipomo High School’s star heavyweight wrestler, laid out her goals for her senior year. She kept them simple, and wrote them d...

School Scene

Lompoc Unified School District revises travel regulations

By BRENNA SWANSTON

A revised travel policy will loosen restrictions on work-related travel expense reimbursements for Lompoc Unified School District (LUSD) educators, after a report from the San...

Hancock opens enrollment for expedited classes

By BRENNA SWANSTON

Allan Hancock College is offering nearly 80 short-term classes for its spring 2017 semester, and registration is open now through March 26.  Hancock’s short-term c...

Canary

Man of the year

Oh boy, all this rain is just great, isn’t it? California has been starved for water for six years now, a drought almost always punctuated with the word “histori...

Street Wise

What is a good place to volunteer?

Christa Weston Marilyn Nawrocki Caleb John Kasey Penrod

Arts

Wooded wonders: Cure your nature deficit disorder at the Wildling Museum's tree-inspired exhibit

By HAYLEY THOMAS CAIN

Look at a man's face and his skin will give away his age: wrinkles around the eyes, scars on the hands. Look at a piece of wood, and you'll see a similar tale unfold. Each rin...

Lompoc Library hosts new book club

By CALEB WISEBLOOD

The Lompoc Public Library offers a new book club, The Literary Tea and Talk, February through May. The community is invited to attend the free program, which is scheduled for ...

Santa Maria Noontimers Lions donates $1,000 to Braille Institute

By CALEB WISEBLOOD

The Santa Maria Noontimers Lions donated $1,000 to the Santa Barbara Braille Institute’s Santa Maria Center. Noontimers Lions Carol Haynes and Roger Selken presented the...

Hear live poetry in Orcutt

By CALEB WISEBLOOD

The Live from the CORE poetry series welcomes two California poets for a reading event on Jan. 14 in Orcutt. David Dominguez of Fresno and Jo Milosch of San Diego will read th...

Humor

Umbrella policy

By ROB KRIDER

Life is all about choices. Coke or Pepsi? Ford or Chevy? Beatles or The Stones? In most situations these types of choices are personal preferences and are usually harmless (...

Music

Weekly habit: Musicians and poets of all flavors are welcome at 6 Degrees Coffee House in Orcutt's open mic night

By JOE PAYNE

Watch a video of Anthony Michael Ariolla performing at 6 Degrees Coffee House. Freedom of expression is a founding principle of our society, but how often do we all engage in...

Film

‘A Monster Calls’ examines the complicated emotions surrounding loss

J.A. Bayona (The Orphanage, The Impossible) directs this young adult fantasy drama about Conor O’Malley (Lewis MacDougall), a young boy dealing with his mum’s (Fel...

Eats

Fresh and wholesome slices await at the family-owned Tower Pizza in Solvang

By REBECCA ROSE

When he was a child growing up in Solvang, Torey Dunn’s mother owned a small gift shop called Mette’s Mill. It was located in a walkway off Alisal in the heart of ...

Hot Stuff

Feelin' Fab

The Chumash Casino Resort welcomes the celebrated tribute group, The Fab Four, on Jan. 12 at 8 p.m. for a concert experience that brings the music of The Beatles to life. With...

Art in the afternoon

The members of the co-op art space, the Valley Art Gallery, are a wealth of skill and information regarding various media. The gallery members share their knowledge during an ...

Join the celebration

The Rancho de Guadalupe Historical Society and Museum welcomes everyone to enjoy a holiday party event on Jan. 15 at the museum. The event includes food, drink, the premiere o...