CalCoastNews Contributor

Daniel Blackburn

Daniel Blackburn is editor of

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County rebuffs California Coastal Commission

By DANIEL BLACKBURN County planners have snubbed California Coastal Commission (CCC) investigators in an ongoing dispute over permit requirements for a controversial Morro Bay commune. Acting Planning Director Kami Griffin, responding to a formal complaint from the state agency, stated flatly in a Nov. 1 letter that Roandoak of God’s “present use… is consistent with […]... (Continue Reading)

State eyes Morro Bay commune for violations

By DANIEL BLACKBURN A destination for the downtrodden on the outskirts of Morro Bay has been circumventing a variety of building codes and environmental regulations for more than four decades, and now an official of the California Coastal Commission is chiding county officials for the protracted paralysis. Additionally, county officials’ options for correcting the problems […]... (Continue Reading)

Politicians must now divulge payments to bloggers

By KAREN VELIE and DANIEL BLACKBURN California’s political watchdog initiated a new rule this week requiring politicians to disclose payments made to people or companies receiving remuneration to blog positively about them, or negatively about their opponents. The rule likely will impact some local activities. The one exception to the rule is if the paid […]... (Continue Reading)

OneWest Bank pays 7 figures in mortgage fraud case

By DANIEL BLACKBURN A San Luis Obispo County couple has received a million-dollar-plus settlement and title to two houses in a case that is likely to result in more lawsuits by people who lost property to mortgage lenders after the bursting of the housing bubble. Greg and Irene Rigali of Shell Beach sued OneWest Bank, […]... (Continue Reading)

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LaBarbera thinks Brennler constitutionally protected

By DANIEL BLACKBURN A San Luis Obispo Superior Court judge, in a tentative ruling, is planning to uphold an anti-SLAPP motion to dismiss a slander lawsuit brought by a homeless services official against Mike Brennler, a North County private investigator. Judge Barry LaBarbera’s office posted his tentative ruling online late Wednesday afternoon. According to the […]... (Continue Reading)

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CCN reporter arrested on DUI charge for .06 blood alcohol level

By JOSH FRIEDMAN and DANIEL BLACKBURN CalCoastNews reporter and co-founder Karen Velie was taken into custody on Aug. 13 after a San Luis Obispo police officer arrested her on suspicion of driving under the influence. Officer Josh Walsh placed Velie under arrest after her blood alcohol test showed a .06. California’s drunk driving laws require […]... (Continue Reading)

Water crisis dividing friends, neighbors

By DANIEL BLACKBURN Ken Currell gazed forlornly at vegetation surrounding the five-acre ranch he and his wife, Lynn, operate on the southeastern edge of Paso Robles, and responded to a visitor’s comments about the property’s beauty: “It was,” he said. Currell’s well, which had been delivering fresh water for decades, went dry in June. In […]... (Continue Reading)

Groundwater ordinance bubbling in controversy

By DANIEL BLACKBURN County supervisors will take their first look Tuesday at a wide range of options for a controversial emergency ordinance aimed at curtailing demand on the Paso Robles Groundwater Basin. (See full staff report here.) “The discussion will be solely to consider options for an ordinance to regulate demand,” wrote County Administrative Officer […]... (Continue Reading)

Video fame, misfortune for burglary suspect

By DANIEL BLACKBURN When Joseph Oliver Godfrey stopped by Paso Robles’ most popular delicatessen Tuesday, he got an unexpectedly cold reception — handcuffs and a brisk walk to the back seat of Officer Jeremy Petlachi’s police car. (See video of Godfrey’s questioning and arrest here.) Godfrey was booked into county jail on charges of vehicular […]... (Continue Reading)

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Water bankers purchase Paso Robles’ Hardham Ranch

By DANIEL BLACKBURN One of the nation’s most controversial and wealthiest farm operators has quietly acquired a sprawling 742-acre parcel of prime ranch and agricultural property adjacent to the southeast edge of the Paso Robles city limits — causing some locals to question the objective. Beverly Hills billionaires Stewart and Lynda Resnick, owners of agribusiness […]... (Continue Reading)

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