Since You Asked: What aircraft is flying over Beale?
Q: Almost every night there are aircraft that appear to be hovering over Beale Air Force base. I am curious as to what they are and what they are doing. Are they training or patrolling? What kind of aircraft are they?
A: Those are MC-12 Liberty aircraft, according to Capt. Brian Wagner.
"It's pretty typical to see them flying day and night from as far away as even Plumas Lake," Wagner said.
The spy planes fly at low altitudes, training to gather intelligence for ground forces in battle zones, according to the US Air Force.
Wagner said five to seven such planes can be seen in the sky around the base.
Earlier this year, Beale added a second reconnaissance squadron to support the base's MC-12 mission.
There's been a fair amount of mystery surrounding the activities of the planes for Yuba County residents.
In November, residents were curious about a curious white plane with no markings frequently seen circling the area. It turned out to be a twin-engine Beachcraft training plane for the MC-12 Liberty flights.
JCPenney looks thin
Q: What's up with JCPenney at the Yuba-Sutter Mall? I went there before the holidays and it looked like the inventory was down to nothing. I went again last week and it was worse. They had a shelf with only four shirts spread out on it and half of the racks were gone. Is there any news about closing the store?
A: Maybe you just caught them a day before the resupply truck came through.
The shelves look fine to me, though after several trips checking in on the Yuba City store it appears people wearing name tags usually outnumber shoppers.
Store officials insist there's no plan to close the store at the Yuba-Sutter Mall.
Randy Matlock, the store leader of the Yuba City JCPenney, and corporate spokesman Joseph Thomas both said the store will remain open.
It's no secret that life has been hard in recent years for JCPenney stores nationwide, according to national media reports.
A recent article in Forbes magazine suggested JCPenney may be one of several chain clothing stores in trouble across the nation.
Thomas wouldn't comment on store sales because they don't talk about performance outside of quarterly earnings releases.
For now at least, locals can still buy clothes at the Yuba City store.