Stay caught up with the best of KQED's reporting each week by subscribing to the Q'ed Up podcast.
This week, the local news was the national news.
By now you probably know the details. Stephon Clark, an unarmed 22-year-old black man, was shot 20 times by police in his grandparent's backyard in South Sacramento on March 18.
His death has prompted protests and outrage. And it's also made relatively conservative Sacramento the unlikely epicenter of a national conversation. The city has long had issues of race and class bubbling below the surface, but now, they've boiled over on the national stage.
In an exclusive interview with KQED's John Sepulvado, Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia talked extensively about the allegations of sexual misconduct against her. She's been accused of sexually harassing and assaulting legislative staffers.
Garcia strongly denied harassing or assaulting anyone, but she didn't deny referring to the first openly gay speaker of the California Assembly as a "homo."
Garcia, who has been a vocal leader in the #MeToo movement and was featured in TIME Magazine, says the allegations of sexual misconduct are coming from her political opponents:
I think this is about shutting me up. Making sure that my advocacy stops. Making sure that I don't ensure that my community has a voice. And it's not just shutting me up, or shutting people like me up. Whether it's on the #MeToo movement, whether it's on environmental justice or whatever injustices that are out there, I have been very vocal. I'm not afraid to take on fights. I do the work that other people don't want to do. I think you know I've been very critical. I want to make sure we have a high standard. I want to make sure we're running with ethics. I have been fighting against corruption. I think along the way my work speaks for itself and why I've accumulated some enemies. But I think more than anything, over the last few years, I've started to be effective. I've started to get things done.
There's a lot in this interview, and I highly recommend reading the whole thing.
I've lived in California for almost two years, but I have spent very little time in the Pacific Ocean.
But for those of you who do like to swim, scuba and surf, you'll be happy to know that even though there are a lot of sharks off of the California coast, your odds of being attacked are pretty low. You're more likely to win an Oscar, be born with 11 toes or get hit by a car.
Apparently, the new cool thing to do for teens these days is smoke a flash drive. Not an actual flash drive, but rather a Juul, an electronic cigarette that looks just like a flash drive you'd plug into your computer.
They take a hit, sucking on the device as they would a cigarette. Then, “they blow into their backpacks … or into their sweater when the teacher isn’t looking,” said Elijah Luna, 16, a sophomore at Vista del Lago High School in Folsom, Calif., about 30 miles east of Sacramento.
One substance abuse counselor in Virginia said she's never seen a tobacco product become so popular so quickly. She predicted it would become "the health problem of the decade."
Right now, utility companies are financially responsible if their equipment is found to have caused damage, even if the company wasn't negligent. But that could change.
Utility company lobbyists have been working overtime in Sacramento trying to convince state leaders to allow utilities to pass any increased costs onto rate payers. That means if, for example, Pacific Gas & Electric was found liable for the Northern California wildfires and forced to pay damages, it would actually be their customers who would pay.
At the same time, some lawmakers, including some representing the North Bay, want to make it impossible for companies to pass on those costs. It'll definitely be something to watch as the legislative session unfolds.