CalCoastNews Contributor

Lisa Rizzo

Lisa Rizzo is a professional freelance journalist for hire. Educated at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo in California, she has a Bachelors of Science degree in journalism and is a member of The Society of Professional Journalists.

Rizzo is the former evening news producer of NBC affiliated television station KSBY-TV 6. She entered the field of journalism 15 years ago and has since acquired experience in nearly all forms of media.

Currently, as a regular freelance reporter for CalCoastNews, an independent investigative online newspaper, Rizzo has covered a variety of topics that have unveiled environmental crisis, financial fraud in the military, and corruption in government.

Lisa Rizzo offers a variety of writing and producing services for individuals and business:

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Cross burning suspects plead not guilty

Four Central Coast residents charged with committing a hate crime against a black teen in predominately white Arroyo Grande pleaded not guilty Monday in a San Luis Obispo County courtroom. On March 18, Jason Kahn, 36, Jeremiah Hernandez, 32, William Soto, 20, and Sara Matheny, 24, allegedly set ablaze an 11-foot cross in direct view of a 19-year-old black woman’s bedroom... (Continue Reading)

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CalCoastNews editor George Ramos dead at 63

George Ramos, best known for being a three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning Los Angeles Times journalist, a Cal Poly journalism department chair, and CalCoastNews Editor has died. He was 63 years old. Police officers found Ramos’ body in a hallway of his Morro Bay home Saturday after CalCoastNews investigative reporter Karen Velie insisted they break into the home and check on his well-being. Ramos,... (Continue Reading)

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Arroyo Grande hospital head resigns

The president and chief executive officer of Arroyo Grande Community Hospital has resigned. Rick Castro, who served both roles at the Arroyo Grande medical center, gave the hospital his notice in June, to be effective July 31. No replacement has been announced. Oversight of the not-for-profit hospital during any possible vacancy would be handled by its management, medical staff and its community... (Continue Reading)

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Camp San Luis Obispo whistle-blower spurs military reform

In response to bonus and incentive fraud plaguing the California National Guard and revealed by a federal auditor working at Camp San Luis Obispo, reform may soon be enacted if three “urgency” bills moving through the state legislature become law. The legislation was initiated following the exposure of upwards of $100 million in potential fraud that was uncovered by Capt. Ronald... (Continue Reading)

Pismo attorney pleads not guilty in grand theft case

The Pismo Beach attorney accused of embezzling more than a quarter-million dollars from a deceased client’s estate entered a not guilty plea Tuesday. William Peter Terhune pleaded not guilty to charges of two counts of grand theft by embezzlement and preparing false documentary evidence. The estate lawyer was arrested July 7 while his James Way, Pismo Beach office was seized by the... (Continue Reading)

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Camp San Luis Obispo office OK’d $15.2 million in fraudulent claims

A former California National Guard manager admits she submitted $15.2 million in false and fraudulent claims to the United States Department of Defense (USDOD)—all of which was approved at an office at Camp San Luis Obispo, then wrongfully paid out in the form of bonuses and loan repayments to fellow members of the Guard. The guilty plea is part of the... (Continue Reading)

Wasps to be released in Los Osos

State agricultural officials are releasing hundreds of tiny wasps in Los Osos neighborhoods to try to control infestations of the light brown apple moth that damages fruit and other plants. “There is no risk to pets, humans or any other animals,” said San Luis Obispo County Chief Deputy Ag Commissioner Brenda Ouwerkerk. “People probably won’t be able to even see the... (Continue Reading)

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Pismo Beach attorney arrested for grand theft

UPDATE: The San Luis Obispo Police Department says investigators have possibly identified additional victims as a result of searches conducted Thursday at Attorney William Peter Terhune’s Pismo Beach office and home. Terhune is facing charges of embezzlement and excessive taking of over $200,000. Bail was set at $1 million. He is scheduled to be arraigned July 15 at 4 p.m. Client trust... (Continue Reading)

SLO County projects and redevelopment funds in jeopardy

Under two new state laws, San Luis Obispo County’s five redevelopment agencies stand to lose a combined $4.5 million within the next year alone and several projects may be in jeopardy—that is if the law prevails over looming legal challenges and the cities’ agencies opt-in to an alternate “pay-to-play” deal. “It will likely require the city (Arroyo Grande) to cease all... (Continue Reading)

New vaccine law takes effect

A new California law that requires middle and high school students to be vaccinated against whooping cough takes effect July 1—a regulation that intends to help curb an outbreak of the highly contagious disease. All students entering 7th through 12th grades in both public and private schools will be required to show proof of a “Tdap” booster shot before going to... (Continue Reading)