Students walk down Telegraph Avenue
Students walk down Telegraph Avenue with the Den student apartments and Maximino Martinez Commons visible in the background on Feb. 3, 2022. Thalia Juarez for CalMatters
Latest News

Morning Lookout: Food Not Bombs vs. permits; to mask or not to mask

Good morning! Today is Friday, Feb. 18. After a chilly morning, temperatures are expected to get into the high 60s by midday, and sunny days are slatted through the three-day weekend.

As a programming note, Morning Lookout will be taking a brief hiatus Monday for Presidents Day. We’ll see all of you bright and early Tuesday morning.

Before we get into the news, a bit of morning Zen:

Here are your headlines:

‘Playing with fire’: COVID cases are dropping by half, but some retailers keep their own mask requirements

Streetlight Records supervisor Rob Zvaleko sorts through records near the store's signage.
(Max Chun / Lookout Santa Cruz)

To mask or not: The county’s mask mandate ended on Tuesday night. Then, why are retailers like The Starving Musician, Shen’s Gallery, Streetlight Records, Toque Blanche, Pacific Thai and Pacific Trading Co. keeping theirs? Lookout’s Max Chun takes the temperature downtown.

It’s a Clock Tower standoff between city, Food Not Bombs over permits

On Thursday, the city of Santa Cruz sent a cease and desist letter to the food distribution group Food Not Bombs
On Thursday, the city of Santa Cruz sent a cease and desist letter to the food distribution group Food Not Bombs: “There are serious safety issues at work here.”
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

Safety issue: Organization leader Keith McHenry says ‘We don’t need to seek permission from a city that refuses to make sure its residents are fed’ while a city spokesperson says the group must ‘operate under the rules and regulations and guidelines that any other organization within the city would be required to do.’ Lookout’s Grace Stetson details the dispute.

PREVIOUSLY: Santa Cruz tells Food Not Bombs it’s time to go: Lot 27 being cleared by city to make room for construction

➤ SERVING UP HOT, NEW JOBS: See all the most recent listings here.

Celebrate Black theater and otherwise get your groove on

BOLO Best Bets: The African American Theatre Arts Troupe at UC Santa Cruz doesn’t need Black History Month to get attention. This long-running program, the only one of its kind in the UC system, deserves respect the other 11 months of the year, too. But if you’re looking to honor the season and the legacy of Black theater, the next two weekends are offering the opportunity. The AATAT’s latest production, “‘da Kink in My Hair,” comes to campus, along with the play’s writer, Trey Anthony. It’s worth checking out on those nights when you’re not already grooving to jazz artist Makaya McCraven, stand-up comic Kristal Adams, or swank rapper Bryce Vine. So many attractions, so little time. Check out the details here.

More Events: See our full BOLO calendar listings for events in Santa Cruz here.

Presented by Kaiser Permanente

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

If UC Berkeley must cut 3,000 students, should it spare Californians?

Students walk past the Doe Memorial Library
Students walk past the Doe Memorial Library on the University of California, Berkeley campus on Feb. 3, 2022. Thalia Juarez for CalMatters

One idea: If UC Berkeley loses its fight to block a judge’s enrollment cap order, UC Berkeley said it’ll have to deny slots to a third of its incoming class. One key lawmaker thinks the university should give priority to Californians. It’s a coda to ongoing tension over how many nonresident students the UCs should enroll. Our partners at CalMatters look into things.

UCSC housing: Appellate court ruling a victory for UCSC in Student Housing West project, but two lawsuits ongoing


‘I Just Want to Stay in One Spot’: From Homeless to Housed in Rugged Del Norte

Struggles up north: California’s homeless crisis is often understood through cities like Los Angeles and San Francisco, where the sheer number of people living unsheltered can quickly capsize the programs designed to help them. But in remote counties like Del Norte, California’s Project Homekey is having a tangible impact. Our partners at Kaiser Health News have the story.

Closer to home: Unhoused Santa Cruz: Three universal truths about why this county remains among the capitals of homelessness

Supporting local Santa Cruz businesses continues to be more important than ever. When it comes to buying gifts this...

Another effort to tax ‘extreme wealth’ in California is launched in Legislature

Stacks of money
(via Pixabay)

More to give: The Legislature is again proposing a tax on “extreme wealth” in California, a move lawmakers say could bring in billions in state revenue by raising taxes on households worth $50 million. Our partners at the Los Angeles Times look into the pros and cons.

Around the county ...

Midyear budget report a reality check of Santa Cruz County’s finances (Sentinel)
Newly-opened Veterans Village Provides Path for Healing (Good Times)
Highway 17 wildlife tunnel moving forward after almost a decade of waiting (KSBW)
County pilot program aims for unified approach to homelessness (Pajaronian)

That’s it for today. If you’re enjoying our coverage, please tell your family and friends about our Lookout Newsletter & Text Center, where they can sign up for all the newsletters and alerts we offer. You can also keep tabs throughout the day by bookmarking our website and following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Have a great day!

Dan Evans
Executive Editor
Lookout Santa Cruz