In the News

July 31, 2012

Given just a few more minutes last Friday night, the party bus carrying Natasha Noland and fellow passengers home to Santa Cruz would have encountered the notorious, mountainous turns of Highway 17. Their churning stomachs might have persuaded them, after a night of drinking and partying, to shut up and sit down. We'll never know.

July 31, 2012

SAN JOSE - The operator of a party bus involved in a fatal accident Friday on Highway 17 was fined for violations in 2010, but passed an inspection in March, state regulators say.

Natasha Noland, 25, died near Los Gatos after she and another woman somehow toppled out of the moving bus after the two had been fighting and Noland was run over by the bus, California Highway Patrol officers said.

July 30, 2012

The death of a Santa Cruz woman who tumbled out of a moving party bus returning from a concert shows the need for tighter restrictions on so-called booze cruises, a supporter of tougher laws said Monday.

Doug Studebaker, 59, whose 19-year-old son, Brett, was killed in a 2010 car crash after spending several hours drinking on a party bus, said the state Legislature needs to pass pending legislation to help prevent future tragedies.

July 28, 2012

An argument on a Santa Cruz party bus may have led to a woman being killed on Highway 17 and the roadway subsequently being shut down near Los Gatos early Saturday morning.

The CHP said that around midnight, a few drunken passengers began arguing on the bus while it was on the highway and after the situation escalated, somehow, two women were ejected from the vehicle.

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July 02, 2012

SAN BRUNO, Calif. (KGO) -- PG&E is revealing a disturbing finding: More than 200 gas transmission lines are at-risk of exploding.

A PG&E report identified 500 trouble spots of the sort that led to the San Bruno disaster. It concerns pipelines that were over-pressurized by the utility company. The report was filed last March with the Public Utilities Commission, but it didn't come to light until Monday after a reporter at the San Francisco Chronicle dug it up.

July 02, 2012

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- State legislation that would make party bus operators accountable for underage drinking is a step closer to becoming law. Tuesday, a state Senate committee takes up the bill which is named after a teenager who was killed after a night on the town in a party bus.

Assm. Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, calls party buses "booze cruises" and "parties on wheels."


June 29, 2012

The South Bayside Waste Management Authority board called for an independent investigation into claims that one of the agency’s employees is being retaliated against for complaining about questionable contracts approved by Executive Director Kevin McCarthy.

The SBWMA, or RethinkWaste, board met in closed session for more than 90 minutes yesterday afternoon before its legal counsel Jean Savaree made the announcement before its regularly scheduled meeting.

June 28, 2012

A San Mateo man was among the former servicemen and women honored Wednesday at the California Assembly's Fifth Annual Veteran of the Year Luncheon.

Justin M. Chavez, 30, served in the United States Marine Corps from 2002 to 2005 and now works with veterans seeking jobs or shelter, according to a statement from the office of Assemblyman Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo.

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June 28, 2012

Assemblyman Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, is urging the South Bayside Waste Management Authority board to delay eliminating a whistleblower’s job “pending a full review, hearing and investigation of the serious allegations” made in a Wednesday Daily Journal article.

The SBWMA, or RethinkWaste, board is scheduled to adopt next year’s budget today that includes eliminating the recycling coordinator position.


June 27, 2012

The recycling coordinator at RethinkWaste alleges her position will be eliminated out of next year’s budget because she repeatedly complained about contracts arranged by the agency’s executive director.

Cathy Hidalgo, who joined RethinkWaste in 2006, alleges her job will be eliminated because she questioned consultant contracts awarded to a close family friend of Kevin McCarthy, the agency’s executive director.