Good morning. It’s Thursday, June 16.
|•||The state’s federal firefighters face a morale crisis.|
|•||Bay Area voters elect first two Latina sheriffs in California.|
|•||And a photo series on the abandoned cabins of Wonder Valley.|
“This is arguably the most important action the California Resources Board will ever take.”
In April, California unveiled a plan to prohibit sales of new gas-powered cars by 2035. It would be a giant leap given that currently just 12% of new vehicle sales are zero-emissions. During a nine-hour public hearing last week, regulators heard concerns over the practicality of the timeline. “I am lower class. I am under the poverty level,” said Sherry Chavarria, a Tulare County resident. “How can I afford a Tesla?” CalMatters
Forest Service firefighters prepared to battle the Caldor fire in El Dorado County on Aug. 31, 2021.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
As California heads into what is expected to be a grueling fire season, just 62% of federal firefighter positions in the state are filled, a Forest Service source told a reporter. Before 2020, nearly all openings nationwide usually would be filled by this time of year. It’s no surprise, firefighters say: The work is backbreaking, the pay is terrible, and the morale is at an all-time low. L.A. Times
California’s rate of home ownership, about 56%, is second lowest in the country behind New York. So state lawmakers have devised a way to usher more residents into homeownership: putting government in the role of a generous relative. Under the proposal, a billion-dollar fund would provide first-time buyers with money for a down payment in exchange for a stake in the home. It would be the largest experiment with so-called shared equity mortgages in the U.S. CalMatters
This small home in San Diego is $1,586 per square foot, about six times the national average.
PreviewFirst for Pacific Sotheby’s International Realty
The New York Times runs a regular feature on “what you get” for a given sum in various housing markets. Monday’s column is a stark illustration of how absurd home-buying has become in California. For $1 million, you can get a one-bedroom bungalow plus a guest unit in Monrovia, a two-bedroom condo in Oakland, or a home with just 630 square feet in San Diego. N.Y. Times
“We did the unthinkable.”
Bay Area voters just elected not just the first, but the first two Latina sheriffs in California. Yesenia Sanchez in Alameda County and Christina Corpus in San Mateo County both toppled incumbents in upset victories. And both ran on progressive platforms, making their wins a counterpoint to San Francisco’s recall of its progressive district attorney, Chesa Boudin. Mercury News | KTVU
The Suntan Special arrived in Santa Cruz in 1959.
Santa Cruz Boardwalk
An old rail line along 32 miles of Santa Cruz County coastline once ran “Suntan Special” excursions to the beach in the middle of the 20th century. But the passenger trips ended long ago, and recent storm damage rendered it largely unusable for freight. On June 7, voters were asked whether the tracks should be ripped out and converted in a pedestrian trail. The answer was an emphatic no, with 70% opposed. They want the trains to run again. Bloomberg
Jesse Powell, leader of the crypto exchange Kraken, dove headlong into the culture wars Wednesday with a Twitter thread that railed against “woke” employees who obsess over pronouns and race, sapping productivity. The outburst came as the N.Y. Times prepared to publish an article that portrayed Powell himself as a source of discord at Kraken. “Even in the male-dominated cryptocurrency industry, which is known for a libertarian philosophy that promotes freewheeling speech, Mr. Powell has taken that ethos to an extreme,” the newspaper wrote. N.Y. Times | SFist
Jimi Hendrix burned his guitar at the Monterey International Pop Festival on June 18, 1967.
Ed Caraeff/Morgan Media Partners
In 1967, Ed Caraeff was a junior at Westchester High School in Los Angeles and an aspiring rock photographer. Just 17 years old, he managed to get himself and a camera borrowed from his family optometrist into the Monterey International Pop Festival, which kicked off on this day 55 years ago. There he met a German photographer who offered some advice: “Save some film for this Jimi Hendrix cat.”
Hendrix, 24, was effectively making his homeland debut after dazzling audiences in London, and he was said to be intent on one-upping the equipment-smashing stars of The Who. As luck had it, Caraeff was mere feet away when Hendrix dropped to his knees and coaxed fire from his Stratocaster. With a click, he captured one of rock’s most perfect moments, shown above: the theatrical culmination of a performance that elevated Hendrix to rock legend status at the groundbreaking festival that ushered in the Summer of Love. It was worth missing a couple days of school, Caraeff later concluded. N.Y. Times | KQED
A man saluted a memorial for Officer Joseph Santana in El Monte on Wednesday.
Keith Birmingham/Pasadena Star-News via Getty Images
The wife of the man who fatally shot two El Monte police officers on Tuesday said she had warned the officers that he had a gun. Diana Flores said she had booked a room at the Siesta Inn Motel to escape her husband, Justin Flores, but he tracked her down. “I’m so, so, so sorry,” Diana Flores said through tears. “They didn’t deserve that. … They were trying to help me and I told them before they went in the room, ‘Don’t go in. He has a gun.'” Law enforcement sources said Justin Flores, who was killed, ran with a gang and was on probation. CBS News | NBC Los Angeles
A Southern California water district devised a creative way to crack down on residents who flout water limitations triggered by the drought. The Las Virgenes Municipal Water District in western Los Angeles County has begun installing flow restrictors at the main shutoff valves of homes that exceed their water budgets. The tiny metal disks reduce the flow from 30 gallons a minute to less than one a minute. “We’re trying to get their attention,” said David Pedersen, the district’s general manager. “The intent is not to be punitive.” Reuters
Phil Mickelson has faced harsh criticism for choosing to play in the Saudi-backed breakaway league.
Rob Carr/Getty Images
San Diego’s Phil Mickelson has been one of the most beloved champions in golf. Now he’s squandering that reputation, some sports writers say, by joining an upstart golf league financed by Saudi Arabia. On Tuesday, the broadcaster Bob Costas was asked why Mickelson would expose himself to such controversy, and he didn’t hold back. “There are no two ways around it, it’s blood money,” Costas said. He noted that Mickelson’s contract was worth an estimated $200 million. “But what’s the price for your soul? What’s the price for integrity?” CNN
Under a 1938 homesteading act, hundreds of WWII veterans and other pioneering types bought up parcels of the Mojave Desert deemed unusable by the federal government for as little as $10 an acre. Today, thousands of the ramshackle cabins they built still dot the landscape, decaying remnants of what the L.A. Times called “one of the strangest land rushes in Southern California history.” The photographer Helin Bereket did a fantastic series on “The Abandoned Cabins Of Wonder Valley.” Bored Panda | Creative Boom
A few of her photos. 👇
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