Caterpillars Make Do With What They’ve Got

photo by Karen Laslo
Pipevine Swallowtail caterpillars feed mostly on the native Pipevine plant that contains a toxic substance that also makes the caterpillars toxic, so that birds and other predators leave them alone.

by Karen Laslo

If you can’t find what you’re looking for, take a look at what you’ve got. The black and red-dotted caterpillar phase of the Pipevine Swallowtail butterfly sets a good example of this parable for we humans.

Normally, in a more natural setting, the caterpillars attach themselves to rocks or trees. But in lower Bidwell Park’s recent freeway construction site, these familiar objects have been stripped away. In the absence of the customary, the caterpillars must improvise.

They do so by hauling themselves up the sides of the concrete freeway supports where they attach and weave a protective, hard shell around themselves.

This phase of the Pipevine Swallowtail is the “chrysalis.” Don Miller, professor of entomology at CSU Chico, says, “Many will emerge next spring, although some may wait another year.” read more

Feds: Butte College broke gender law Alleged rape by football player investigated

photo by Gabriel Sandoval
Butte College

by Gabriel Sandoval

The U.S. Department of Education has concluded its years-long investigation into Butte College’s handling of a student rape allegation, determining the community college violated federal law.

The investigation began after a student filed a federal complaint in February 2013, alleging she was raped by an unnamed college football player at an off-campus party in September 2012 and that the college’s response did not comply with the gender-equity law known as Title IX.

Under the law, colleges must investigate and adjudicate allegations of sexual assault, on- and off-campus, in order to maintain safe learning environments free of sex-based discrimination, so as not to deny or limit a student’s participation in activities or programs. Colleges failing to comply risk losing federal aid. read more

State probe of PAC more than year old Reports vague on spending targeting progressive candidates

BCAA flier attacked former Mayor Scott Gruendl.

by Dave Waddell

A Butte County political action committee – under state investigation for more than a year and counting – has become increasingly vague in reporting its spending activities targeting Chico liberals.

The state Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) announced on Aug. 15, 2016, that it had opened an investigation into Butte County Awareness and Accountability and its treasurer, Tom Kozik, as a result of information uncovered in this ChicoSol exclusive.

“It’s still an open and ongoing investigation,” Jay Wierenga, the FPPC’s communications director in Sacramento, said last week. read more

Protesters gather in Chico in solidarity with Charlottesville Rallies are held across the nation to protest white supremacist movement

photo by Karen Laslo

Siana Sonoquie and Paul Alvarez were among about 100 Chico residents who gathered Sunday morning at the corner of 20th Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway to protest white supremacist rallies in Charlottesville, Va. Sonoquie said the Chico rally was both comforting and empowering. "As a person of color, it's very scary and triggering to see groups of racist white men chanting and holding torches," she said of the white-nationalist marches in Charlottesville. A "Unite the Right" rally there on Saturday drew neo-Nazis, Ku Klux Klan and others and a counter-protester was killed.

Chico buys guns for cops to own City’s gun-buying escalated with Down Range

photo by Karen Laslo
Down Range Indoor Training Center sign

by Dave Waddell

In the last three years alone, the financially strapped city of Chico has paid out nearly $25,000 to buy at least 40 guns of undisclosed types for the personal ownership of its police officers, according to a search of online records by ChicoSol.

Such gun transactions – made possible by a $900 per year “uniform allowance” afforded to all of the Chico Police Department’s more than 90 “sworn personnel” – skyrocketed with the advent of the Down Range Indoor Training Center three years ago.

Down Range, which is outside city limits along Highway 99 on the northern entrance to Chico, is known for boldly advertising the sale of assault rifles, especially around some holidays. The business is co-owned by Chico police officer Steve Dyke and has been gaining a bigger slice of Chico PD’s gun-buying pie each year. read more

CSUC students to run World Championship Ten of the SAGE student mentors to travel to Ukraine

photo courtesy of SAGE
Chico State SAGE student mentors

by Hannah Yeager

When Chico State third-year student Jaclyn Soller arrives in Ukraine, she will not just help manage an event. She’ll also travel in a new country and meet other students from a total of 20 nations.

“Learning their different cultures and traditions is just so cool,” Soller said. “Especially the cultures I haven’t been able to encounter yet in my life. I mean, you’re in one place and can experience all of these cultures.”

Soller is one of 10 Chico State student mentors who will help run the World Championship event for Students for the Advancement of Global Entrepreneurship program (SAGE) in Odessa, Ukraine. read more