Estero Bay News Briefs 1-18-2024

Written by Theresa-Marie Wilson

Theresa-Maria Wilson has been a journalist covering the North Coast and South County area for over 20 years. She is also the founder of Cat Noir CC and is currently working on a novel.

January 19, 2024

Addis Supports Newsom’s Budget 

A pie chart showing general fund expenditures for the proposed 2024-25 state budget.

Assemblymember Dawn Addis (D-Morro Bay) supports the 2024-25 the $291 billion state spending plan proposed by Governor Gavin Newsom. The goal is to close a projected $37.9-billion budget deficit.

“With the fiscal outlook of state and the anticipated budget deficit, I applaud Governor Newsom for taking the right steps to ensure we have a balanced and measured budget,” Addis said in a new release. “This year will require diligence and strong collaboration between the Administration and the Legislature to ensure we maximize our resources for all Californians. I am confident that we will make the best decisions for our state, even in uncertain and challenging times.”

The budget could see cuts in funding housing for the homeless and climate change while delaying a $25 per hour minimum wage increase for healthcare workers.

K-12 school programs and mental health programs are expected to keep funding similar to last fiscal year.

The new fiscal years begins July 1. To view the proposed budget, go to

Primary Election Ballots Coming

Ballots for the March Primary Election will land in SLO County mailboxes soon. Make sure your voter registration status, mailing address, and party preference are up-to-date.

Find information at under the County Clerk. 

COVID-19 Isolation Rules Change

Updates to COVID-19 guidance at the state level mean members of the general public with COVID-19 who feel well, have improving symptoms, and have been fever-free for 24 hours (without fever-reducing medicine) may leave isolation, followed by a period of strict masking around others for 10 days. A negative antigen test is not needed to exit isolation. Previously, Californians were able to leave isolation after five days, followed by a period of strict masking for 10 days.

The change became effective January 9, with a new state order. It does not apply in health care settings, which are still covered by AFL 21-08.9. For other higher-risk settings such as congregate living facilities, the Public Health Department continues to provide local guidance.

“The most important thing to remember is to stay home if you are sick ― that’s been true throughout the pandemic and remains true with this change,” said Dr. Penny Borenstein, county health officer. 

“If you are feeling much better and no longer have a fever, you can end your isolation while being vigilant to mask around others,” Dr. Borenstein said. “That means avoiding situations where you might take off your mask, like eating at a restaurant. Please be honest with yourself about your symptoms and take care to protect yourself and others.”

Still Time to Register for Cuesta Spring Semester

Register now at Cuesta College campuses.

The spring semester at Cuesta College technically began Jan. 16 at Cuesta College, but registration continues through Jan. 28, with instructor approval.

Students can find a comprehensive listing of classes on the class finder and register for courses at  The term runs through May 17. Cuesta College also offers less-than-full-term courses that run between three and 17 weeks. Course fees for credit classes are $46 per unit, and noncredit courses are free.  

“This spring, Cuesta College is proud to announce the launch of new cohorts, programs, and course offerings in areas such as aviation maintenance, nursing & allied health, and ranch education,” said Superintendent / President Dr. Jill Stearns. “These are specifically designed to meet the growing demand and workforce needs of our local and regional communities and build skills in as little as two years.” 

For questions regarding classes and registration, call (805) 546-3140, email, or visit the Cuesta College Admissions & Registration webpage.

Send your news, community and business briefs to Be sure to include the who, what, why, where and when information along with a contact person.

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