People wait in line to get tested for COVID-19 at Union Station on Monday. (Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)
(Roaring Camp Railroads)
Lookout PM Archive

LOOKOUT PM: Santa Cruz has its say on rail issue & a closer look at homelessness

Happy Tuesday evening, people.

This morning we told you about one cool launch (Wallace Baine kicking off his Icons of Santa Cruz series on Friday) and now I get to flag another cool Lookout endeavor that’ll be coming at you this weekend.

Unhoused Santa Cruz

COMING SUNDAY: We live in paradise and yet so many in our midst live a chaotic existence we strain to comprehend. Why are so many people living on the streets? Why can’t a smart, compassionate community like this agree on solutions? How can the system be so seemingly broken? Lookout talks to those whose job it is to solve the unhoused crisis and examines the myriad reasons we haven’t gotten further on what many believe to be the most intractable issue of our generation.

To the headlines ...

Santa Cruz City Council urges rejection of plans to stop freight service in county

Roaring Camp's beach train at the Boardwalk.
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

City weighs in: Regional Transportation Commission officials have floated an idea to foreclose freight on the Santa Cruz and Felton lines to potentially make commuter rail more financially viable. Roaring Camp, however, says the RTC has promised to keep the lines open for freight, and not doing so could hurt its business. Though it would have no formal impact, the Santa Cruz City Council sided with Roaring Camp Tuesday. Dan Evans and Max Chun with the details.

PREVIOUSLY: Freight abandonment discussion on Felton line stirs passions at RTC; kibosh put on pro-rail ballot measure (Lookout)

Hanloh x Birichino collab, Fungus Fair, and good eats in Santa Barbara?

Hanloh x Birichino collab
(Anne Martinete)

Lily Belli on Food: If you haven’t checked out Lily’s weekly food newsletter yet, it is a must. Her latest edition is packed full of all kinds of local eating goodness. Read it and sign up for it to hit your inbox here.


As mask mandates ease, should California schools be next?

Third-grade students wear masks in class at a Los Angeles school.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

A decision: The next step for schools is under discussion as indoor masking is set to ease on Feb. 15 in many settings in California. More from the LA Times here.

New COVID sick leave would leave out at least 1 in 4 California workers

Luna Walker bags chocolate croissants for patrons at Nabolom Bakery in Berkeley
(Martin do Nascimento / CalMatters)

Many will be left out: California lawmakers plan to bring back COVID supplemental paid sick leave, but it won’t cover small business workers. More from CalMatters here.

PREVIOUSLY: New COVID-19 sick pay for California workers approved by lawmakers (LA Times)


‘Unprecedented’ backlogs with the IRS mean Americans could be facing a tough tax season

Image via iStock

Advocate testimony: Millions of U.S. taxpayers could face delays in having their tax returns processed by the IRS and in receiving their refunds, the nation’s taxpayer advocate on Tuesday testified before Congress. More from the LA Times on that.

Presented by Kaiser Permanente

Kaiser Permanente has partnered with systems change agency SupplyBank.org to disperse donations of sanitizing wipes, N95...

In the streaming era, Super Bowl 2022 commercials will be working overtime

Los Angeles

Different era: Thirty-second commercials — especially during the Super Bowl — have a tall order these days. They need to be conversation starters that can engage consumers who will spread advertisers’ messages on social media, garnering impressions on top of the massive audience watching the game. More the LA Times.

More from here & elsewhere

Santa Cruz to explore sales tax increase again (Sentinel)
Hawaii will not require tourists be boosted, in big policy shift (SF Gate)
Famed US skateboarder killed in Iceland plane crash (SF Gate)
In break with RNC, Mitch McConnell calls Jan. 6 a ‘violent insurrection’ (USA Today)
Will one-way masking stop Covid spread? Here’s what experts say. (NBC News)
Neil Young urges Spotify workers to quit as Trump tells Joe Rogan to ‘stop apologizing’ (NBC News)
Larry Fitzgerald wants what’s best for QB Kyler Murray, Arizona Cardinals after social media scrub (ESPN)

That’s it for a Tuesday. See you back here tomorrow and we’ll scale the Wednesday hump together.

Mark Conley
Deputy Managing Editor

B Corporations, including the Santa Cruz businesses highlighted here, make it their mission to balance profit with...