Chico State 2020: Bigger and better
Budget crises may loom in the future, but so do tall buildings and big dreams, as Chico State University plans how it will look decades from now.

The university is in the process of evaluating and updating its 1990 Master Plan, predicting how the campus will grow in the years to come.

The coolest part of whole thing, as members of the Associated Students Governmental Affairs Committee found at a Dec. 10 meeting, is being able to see new buildings pop up through the use of computer models. A presentation by Greg Francis, who’s in charge of facilities planning, and Vice President for Business and Finance Dennis Graham, showed the eras of the campus, from 1887 on, as the once-concentrated core campus radiated into Chico proper.

The university wants to expand in phases while respecting the character of Chico. Besides going to taller buildings when possible, the plan is to buy up more land for housing, open space and parking.

“We really need some more land,” said Francis, even with minimal enrollment growth.

Graham said it’s also a goal to remove buildings to open up the viewscape along Second Street. “One of the tragedies of this campus is that, when we went across First Street, it started turning its back on the town.”

Weirdo evades cops in Oroville
Butte County sheriff’s deputies had a close encounter of the creepy kind last week with a man they suspect may be a serial rapist.

According to official reports, an officer was dispatched to a residence in the Oroville foothills Monday in response to reports of a man who had climbed into a child’s outdoor playhouse. The residence is also used as a day care center.

When a deputy peered into the playhouse to investigate, a man emerged and attempted to strike the deputy, who responded with a baton upside the man’s head. After a brief struggle, the suspect fled on foot, leaving his jacket and a bloody hat behind. The deputy chased the man over about two miles, but he eventually escaped.

Upon investigating the suspect’s discarded clothes, the deputy found the jacket to contain several pairs of women’s underwear, rubber gloves, binoculars, a realistic-looking BB gun, and paraphernalia used for methamphetamine use. Sheriff’s spokeswoman Cheryl Broom said the items could be considered tools of the trade for serial rapists.

Investigators have submitted the man’s DNA, found on his bloody hat, for analysis, hoping to determine if the man is listed in a sexual-offender database.

He is described as a Hispanic male, about 5’ 8”, 180 pounds with short, brown hair and a muscular build.

Spam, spam, spam, spam
Tired of spam ruining your day? No, we’re not talking about the watery meat product for sandwiches; we’re talking unsolicited e-mail that fills your computer screen, offering everything from advice on how to create a dollar store to the best farm porn on the Internet.

If you’ve had enough, you’re not alone, and help may be on the way. State Sen. Debra Bowen has a bill that, according to a press release, “turns the state’s opt-out spam statute into an opt-in law that bans e-mail advertising unless there’s an existing business relationship between the sender and the recipient or the recipient has agreed to receive the e-mail ad.” The bill would allow any Californian who receives unsolicited advertising via e-mail to sue the sender for $500 per violation, which can be tripled if a judge finds the sender “willfully and knowingly” violated the ban.

According to a recent study, e-mailers in the United States will have received 261 billion unsolicited e-mail ads by the end of this year, an 86 percent increase over last year. Bowen is conducting a survey on the matter. To participate, go to and click "Survey on Spam."