State lawmakers have a lot to do when they return to work after summer recess. Starting Monday, they will begin the long process of tackling health insurance reform. They'll also consider ways to reduce wait times at Department of Motor Vehicles offices throughout the state. And, rising temperatures aren't enough to deter some hikers; we talk to an expert about the best places to take a shady trek.
Mendocino Complex fire update
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The Mendocino Complex continues to burn about 100 miles north of San Francisco. It's now the second largest fire in California's recorded history.
- Scott McLean, Cal Fire
California bill proposes standardization of emergency alert system
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When a fire starts moving, flames can spread pretty fast with little warning. While some counties have alert systems in place, there is no standardized way to let people know that a fire is on its way. But a bill working its way through the state legislature aims to change that. It's called SB 833 and if passed, it could standardize the way people receive emergency alerts and evacuation orders in the state.
- California Senator Mike McGuire
Helping the landscape recover from fire
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The fires burning through California are leaving a lot of devastated forest in their wake. But once the flames have been extinguished, how do natural landscapes recover? Human intervention can help the process along.
- Erin Questad, restoration ecologist at Cal Poly Pomona
California legislators will take up health insurance reform
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As the California government returns to work in Sacramento after its summer break, lawmakers will be tackling a number of issues, and one of them is health insurance reform.
- Michelle Faust, KPCC health care reporter
Building a better DMV
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Going to the Department of Motor Vehicles can be its own personal trip to a really, really slow hell. That's hardly news. Most of us know from personal experience. But what is news is that this week several state lawmakers will be looking at different ways to make your experience better. They say the wait times at the DMV should be shorter. They gave the agency money to prep for a flood of Californians getting new ID cards that comply with the federal security guidelines called "Real ID." But lawmakers say waits have only gotten worse, and they want to know why.
- Jim Patterson, Republican state representative from Fresno
On the Lot
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The latest news in Hollywood, including updates on CBS chairman Les Moonves and Russia's appointment of action-movie star Steven Seagal as a special representative.
- John Horn, host of KPCC's The Frame
Where to take a shady hike on a hot summer day
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We've been having some pretty hot days here in L.A. And while many people will choose to stay inside some nature-lovers still want to go outside without melting. That leads us to the second installment in our new series -- "Parks and Trek" -- where we share tips about experiencing the great outdoors in the big-city environment of Southern California. We tried out the Dawn Mine trail and got some tips for what makes a good summer hike and when it might be too hot for even the shadiest trails.
Read more on LAist.
- Casey Schreiner, hiking expert and founder of modernhiker.com