News Briefs 8-10-2023

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.

August 11, 2023

Know Your Evacuation Zone

During an emergency the right information can save your life.

Residents of San Luis Obispo County are encouraged to “know your evacuation zone” as part of the launch of a countywide evacuation planning project. The new pre-determined evacuation zones will assist first responders in rapidly determining evacuation areas during an emergency and allow the public to easily identify if they are in an area under an Evacuation Warning, Evacuation Order or other protective actions. The zones are intended for emergencies that require large-scale evacuations.

To save time during an emergency, it is important for residents to know your zone in advance. Go to ReadySLO.org/evaczone and enter your address in the evacuation zone tool. The tool will tell you your zone name. It is important to write down the zone name and post it in a location easily accessible in an emergency.

“Taking a minute to write down your evacuation zone could save your life,” said Emergency Services Manager Scott Jalbert, “knowing your zone in advance will save you valuable time during an emergency if you are told to evacuate.”

If an Evacuation Warning or Evacuation Order is issued, emergency officials will utilize alert and notification methods such as Wireless Emergency Alerts and Reverse 911 to notify residents which zones are affected. By knowing your evacuation zone in advance, you will be ready to respond as soon as your zone is identified.

This new initiative was made possible through a grant from the FireSafe Council and partnership between the County of San Luis Obispo and the San Luis Obispo County Fire Chiefs Association.

Readers with questions should call the County Office of Emergency Services at (805) 781-5678 or visit ReadySLO.org. 

SLO Transit Announces New Electric Busses

Getting around the City of San Luis Obispo is going to get a little more green.

SLO Transit has added two state-of-the-art battery electric buses that will serve the San Luis Obispo community and transit riders. This decision not only aligns with the California Air Resource Board’s Innovative Clean Transit regulation, but it also aligns with City’s the Climate Action Plan goal of becoming a carbon neutral community by 2035, officials said.  

“Transportation is the biggest cause of climate pollution in our community and riding the bus is a fun way to reduce your household emissions,” said Lucia Pohlman, the City’s Sustainability and Natural Resources Analyst. “Now that we’re transitioning to electric, bus riders will have an even bigger impact.” 

The SLO City Council recently approved funding for an additional six battery electric buses, which will increase the percentage of zero-emission buses in SLO Transit’s fleet to an impressive 45%, which are anticipated to be delivered by 2026. The installation of charging infrastructure for the electric buses is underway and is anticipated to be completed by the end of the month, ensuring a seamless transition to electric buses for the benefit of residents, commuters, and the environment. 

The new electric buses promise numerous advantages, including reduced greenhouse gas emissions, quieter operation, improved air quality, and increased passenger comfort, officials said. 

SLO Transit provides daily fixed-route transit service within the city limits of San Luis Obispo and Cal Poly. For more information on SLO Transit’s electric bus program, visit www.slotransit.org.  

Addis Bill Signed by Governor

Governor Newsom recently signed Assembly Bill 358, the California Community College Housing Act, introduced by Assemblymember Dawn Addis (D-Morro Bay).

The bill aims to address student homelessness and housing challenges and is the first of Assemblymember Addis’ bills to become law. It allows community colleges to provide student housing without mandatory approval of architectural plans by the Department of General Services’ Division of State Architect (DSA), bringing parity with faculty campus housing.

The bill becomes law on January 1, 2024, a significant step in supporting students affected by housing insecurity in the community college system.

Community Band Seek Players 

Did you hang up your instrument years ago but miss the thrill of playing for a crowd? 

The Morro Bay White Caps Community Band continues to thrive and expand under the baton of conductor Brenda Hascall. Although the band has more than doubled in size since Hascall began conducting, new members are wanted. 

“The members are enjoying a challenging but fun repertoire which keeps them highly motivated,” Hascall said. “There has been wonderful engagement with our audience both in person and online as well.  I like to keep our rehearsals fun and moving forward. I do my best to encourage a collaborative environment where we can all grow as musicians.”

Anyone interested in joining the band, should see information on the band’s website: www.morrobaywhitecaps.com.

The Morro Bay White Caps Community Band has two more summer performances scheduled on the South T-Pier; Saturday August 5 and Saturday September 9 from 11a.m. to 1p.m. Photo by Brenda Hascall.

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