(Image courtesy French Hospital Medical Center)

A Central Coast hospital is celebrating the largest gift in its history, which will help build a new emergency department.

French Hospital Medical Center in San Luis Obispo received a $5.5 million dollar grant from Peter and Mary Beth Oppenheimer towards building the new ER.

(Phillips 66 photo)

San Luis Obispo County Supervisors today rejected a controversial proposal to allow expansion of a Central Coast oil refinery to handle massive oil trains.

Supervisors looked at a plan by Phillips 66 to allow a 1.3 mile long new rail spur at the company’s Nipomo refinery, as well as other related facilities. It’s an issue which drew opposition from around the state, with communities like Santa Barbara, Goleta, and San Jose among those taking stands because of safety concerns about the potential for massive trains passing through their neighborhoods.

Authorities are investigating a murder on the South Coast.

Police were called to the 100 block of Dolores Court in Oxnard just before 10 p.m. Monday by reports of a shooting. They found a man in his 40’s who had been shot. Paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene.

His name hasn’t been released pending notification of relatives. Oxnard Police aren’t saying what they think led to the killing.

A Ventura County city has promoted a veteran member of its police department to become its new police chief.

David Livingstone is Simi Valley’s new top cop. Livingstone has spent his entire 26 year law enforcement career with the Simi Valley department, rising through its ranks. He was the department’s Deputy Chief, and has served as interim chief since Mitch McCann retired from the agency’s top post last December.

Livingstone will oversee a department with 178 uniformed and civilian personnel, and a nearly $33 million dollar annual budget.

(Phillips 66 photo)

A public hearing on a controversial proposal to allow expansion of a Central Coast oil refinery to handle massive oil trains began Monday.

The San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors is reviewing the Phillips 66 plan to allow a 1.3 mile long new rail spur at the company’s Nipomo refinery, as well as other related facilities.

The company wants to bring in three 80 car trains a week, with each train carrying 2.2 million gallons of oil. The County Planning Commission rejected the plan, and Phillips appealed the decision to County Supervisors.

He’s run billion dollar investment companies, served as Chief of Staff for a presidential cabinet member, and written pieces for the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and other major publications.

If you’ve ever been to a major event at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, the odds are good this man is the person who welcomed the crowd, and introduced the event or guest speaker.

The body of a Santa Barbara County teenager who failed to return home was found at the base of a cliff in Carpinteria.

Family members reported 18 year old Filiberto Scott Hernandez missing Sunday.

Monday morning, some family members and friends found his body at the base of some bluffs southeast of Carpinteria State Beach. Paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene. The Santa Barbara County Coroner’s Office is investigating to try to determine what led to the teen’s death.

A Ventura County based university has named a Chicago reverend and professor rector to head its seminary in Northern California.

Reverend Raymond Pickett will become head of the Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in Berkeley. Pacific Lutheran is part of California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks. Pickett is currently a professor at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, where he worked on community organizing efforts to deal with issues like racism and economic inequality.

(National Park Service Photo)

The National Parks Centennial in 2016 led to a spike in park visitation, especially at two national park units in our backyard.

The parks system reported a system-wide increase of nearly eight percent in visits last year.

But, Channel Islands National park had even better numbers, with a 13% hike in visitation during 2016. 342,000 people visited the park. And, Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, which includes parts of Ventura and Los Angeles Counties, had a nearly 14% increase. It had 906,000 visitors.

A Central Coast high school student is probably drinking a Coke or two to celebrate a scholarship she just won.

Zoi Urban won a $20,000 scholarship from the soft drink company. The senior at Santa Maria’s Righetti High School was one of 150 winners from a pool of nearly 90,000 applicants for Coca-Cola scholarships.

The winners were chosen for the academic achievement and community involvement. Urban has a 4.4 GPA, volunteers with the Special Olympics, and tutors kids struggling in school.