News Briefs 6-1-2023

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.

June 5, 2023

Local League Honored at State Convention 

The League of Women Voters of San Luis Obispo County officers accept the ‘Leaning into League Power’ award at the League of Women Voters of California State Convention in San Francisco. Pictured are Communications Director Janice Langley, President Cindy Marie Absey and 2nd Vice President Ed Cabrera. The trio were also delegates at the convention.

The League of Women Voters of San Luis Obispo County received the “Leaning into League Power” award at the League of Women Voters of California State Convention in San Francisco on May 20. The award recognized the local League’s “effective promotion of the League’s mission and work through activism and education” and noted that “by mobilizing members and influencing public opinion they ensured fairly redistricted representation and had a significant increase in membership”.

The League of Women Voters of San Luis Obispo County joined the lawsuit filed by the SLO County Citizens for Good Government to invalidate the redistricting map adopted by the Board of Supervisors in December 2021. The lawsuit resulted in a settlement in March 2023 which set aside the 2021 map and required the adoption of a new map. Over the course of the litigation, League membership tripled.

The organization is a nonpartisan civic group that encourages the informed and active participation of citizens in government and public life and influences public policy through education and advocacy.

For more information on the League of Women Voters of San Luis Obispo County, go to

Input Deadline for 41/Main Street Interchange June 6

As a reminder, the deadline to provide feedback about a project at one of Morro Bay’s traffic congestion hot spots, where Highways 1, 41 and Main Street meet, is June 6. For more information and to take the survey, go to

The options on the table include constructing a roundabout or putting in traffic signals or leaving the intersection as it with a few minor changes. 

The project is currently in the Project Approval and Environmental Document Phase of the Caltrans Process.

County Agencies Awarded Grant Funding for Water Projects

Five SLO County Agencies Awarded Grant Funding for Water Projects

The City of Morro Bay and four other and four other agencies were awarded a total of $3.8 million from the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) Integrated Regional Water Management (IRWM) Program on May 17. 

Awarded Projects and Agencies:

• Water Reclamation Facility, Indirect Potable Reuse Component, City of Morro Bay for $1.2 million

• Central Coast Blue, Phase 1, City of Pismo Beach for $1 million 

• Water Resource Reliability Program Projects, Oceano CSD $600,000

• Master Water Report Update, Flood Control District, $549,755

• Water Reliability Project – Water Main Replacement, San Miguel $300,000

• Grant Administration, Flood Control District, $132.374

This is the 10th IRWM Grant award for the San Luis Obispo County region since 2008. Through this program, the region has been awarded more than $32 million for 43 different water-related projects and plans benefiting 16 unique communities and the entire county.  

• $29 Million directly supported reimbursement of 18 construction projects, including water, wastewater, and recycled water facilities.

• Nine projects created a secondary or drought-resilient potable supply source. Prior to these projects, six of these communities had a single source of water supply.

This award concludes the Proposition 1 IRWM Implementation Grant Program. Future opportunities to pursue grants through the IRWM program will depend on State funding actions.

SLO Council Saves Popular Land as Open Space

The San Luis Obispo City Council adopted a conservation plan that formally designates 51 acres at Righetti Hill as City of San Luis Obispo Open Space, protecting the land and providing new trails with sweeping views of SLO. 

The City acquired the land in 2018 as a condition of the approval of the Orcutt Area subdivision project. With this addition, more than 7,800 acres of land are now part of the City’s Greenbelt Protect Program, which prioritizes the conservation of natural open spaces forever. 

Metallic Balloon safety During Celebrations

California’s graduation season is in full swing, and PG&E is warning customers about the public safety risks associated with helium-filled metallic balloons. 

If your graduation celebration involves balloons, make sure they are secured with a weight. Otherwise, they can float away and make contact with overhead power lines, causing a public safety risk. In the first four months of 2023, metallic balloons striking electric lines have caused 91 power outages in PG&E’s service area, disrupting service to more than 35,000 customers. These power outages can interrupt electric service to critical facilities such as hospitals, schools and traffic lights. 

Metallic balloons have a silvery coating, which is a conductor for electricity. If the balloons float away and contact power lines, they can short transformers, cause power outages and melt electrical wires, causing public safety risks. 

To help ensure that graduation balloon celebrations are enjoyed responsibly, PG&E reminds customers to use caution and avoid celebrating with metallic balloons near overhead electric lines. Make sure helium-filled metallic balloons are securely tied to a weight that is heavy enough to prevent them from floating away. Never remove the weight. When possible, keep metallic balloons indoors. Never permit metallic balloons to be released outside. Do not bundle metallic balloons together. Never attempt to retrieve any type of balloon, kite or toy that becomes caught in a power line. Leave it alone, and immediately call PG&E at 


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