1. Word used by Northern Californians because that's the only thing they could come up with to get their part of the state recognized.
2. Replaces the word "very" or "extremely" because N. Californians have a shortage of thesauruses.
Dude, Northern California is, like, so hella Northern.
"Why do people from Sacramento say 'hella'?" asked Billy.
"Because the Kings lost," replied the teacher.