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Incarcerated California youths, trained to fight wildfires, may now be able to find similar jobs once released

Jun 22, 2022
A recently passed law allows some young people trained in firefighting to have their records expunged, opening doors to employment.
Young men from Pine Grove Youth Conservation Camp in the Sacramento-area foothills during spring training in May.
Lesley McClurg/KQED

Can winemakers salvage grapes tainted by wildfire smoke?

Jun 7, 2022
Scientists are looking at ways to determine if grapes from smoky areas can still be used, without adding an unpleasant ashy taste to wine.
Phil Crews at his Pelican Ranch Winery in Scotts Valley. Crews, an organic chemist at UC Santa Cruz, showed that a method pioneered in Australia can detect smoke's impact on California wines.
Jerimiah Oetting/KAZU News

What are the fastest ways to address the homelessness crisis in Los Angeles?

May 25, 2022
When service providers lease buildings, it can speed up the availability of housing that comes with social services.
Pallets used as tent platforms at a “safe camping” site.
Alborz Kamalizad/KPCC

Courts decide California can't mandate corporate board diversity

May 18, 2022
But institutional investors, consumers and other stakeholders could continue to hold companies accountable.
Despite California courts striking down laws requiring diversity in corporate board rooms, many companies continue to make progress.
Creative/Getty Images

Judge challenges a California law mandating diversity on corporate boards

Apr 6, 2022
The law, which went into effect in 2020, required California-based companies to appoint directors from underrepresented communities.
The percentage of female directors on California boards doubled in the three years since the gender law passed, one researcher said.
SolStock/Getty Images

Would a new public college campus in California help provide spots for more qualified students?

Mar 31, 2022
There aren't enough seats at 4-year universities for qualified students. How can the state meet the rising demand?
Miranda Evans, special projects manager for the city of Chula Vista, stands on the site that the city has designated for a university or group of universities.
Jill Replogle/KPCC

Who should get reparations? California's task force wrestles with that question.

Mar 30, 2022
A California task force weighs which Black residents could be eligible.
Writer Ta-Nehisi Coates shakes hands with House Subcommittee Ranking Member Mike Johnson (R-LA) following a House Judiciary Subcommittee hearing on slavery reparations on June 19, 2019 in Washington, DC. The subcommittee debated the H.R. 40 bill, which proposes a commission be formed to study and develop reparation proposals for African-Americans.
Zach Gibson/Getty Images

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Why are California's gas prices so high?

Mar 15, 2022
There are several reasons. For one, the state is highly dependent on foreign crude oil.
California has always been among the priciest places for a gallon of gas in the U.S. Among the reasons are the state's higher taxes and environmental standards.
Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images

There's a different kind of gold rush in California: Sports gambling

Jan 11, 2022
Everyone from Native American tribes to online entities wants a piece of what some call the "holy grail" of the sports gambling landscape.
Various group entities like Fanduel and Native American tribes are vying for control of the sports gambling scene in California.
Patrick Smith/Getty Images

In fire-prone California, experts push utilities to monitor the riskiest equipment on the grid

Jan 6, 2022
Power lines and equipment have sparked devastating blazes. Now companies are asked to take stock of their aging infrastructure.
Utilities have been making upgrades to their systems. Above, workers re-anchor a pole that suspends power lines outside Acton, California.
Lily Jamali/Marketplace