January 11, 2013 (San Diego)--A 92-year-old woman died from influenza, the County Health and Human Services Agency announced Wednesday It was the second death this flu season. The first was an 89-year-old woman who died Nov. 15.
County health officials are encouraging everyone to be immunized to help protect themselves and their loved ones against the flu, especially now that influenza activity is increasing nationwide. A total of 143 cases were reported the week ending Jan. 5, a 77 percent increase from the prior week, when 81 cases were reported.
Severely Neglected Dog Found Dying in Dumpster
January 11, 2012 (Spring Valley)--The County of San Diego Department of Animal Services is looking for any witnesses or information regarding a severely neglected dog that was found in a dumpster Saturday, Jan. 5 at l in Spring Valley.
The dog, a tan-colored, 10 year old neutered male cocker spaniel, was wrapped in a blanket and placed in a black plastic trash bag, which was tied shut and put in the school dumpster.
“There is nothing altruistic about this.” – Don Renard, Boulevard resident, on planned destruction of his rural community to create an energy corridor
“I don’t know of any community facing this many energy projects.” – Donna Tisdale, Chair, Boulevard Planning Group
By Miriam Raftery
January 11, 2013 (Boulevard)--Retired tugboat captain Don Renard worked hard all his life before purchasing a little piece of heaven in San Diego's rural East County. He bought a historic house, the former Ruby Store, once a stage coach stop in Boulevard. He and his family have been working to restore it—in between savoring quiet times spent watching the hawks, owls and song birds among the old oak groves around their home.
But there’s a squall of epic proportions on the horizon. Soon, the Renard family’s home is slated to be surrounded by an industrial solar “farm”—on all four sides. In every direction, 360 degrees, massive panels 30 feet high or so will track the sun. Some will be just 300 feet from his doorstep.
By Miriam Raftery
Photos: Supervisor Dianne Jacob spells out her goals for future; Dave Roberts, left, prepares to take oath as his children look on.
January 8, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – For the first time in 19 years, a new County Supervisor, Dave Roberts, has been elected. At yesterday’s swearing in ceremony, East County Supervisor Dianne Jacob also made history, becoming the longest serving woman on the Board.
Jacob made clear that she hopes to have an ally in the newly elected Supervisor—particularly on energy issues and protection of the backcountry. Roberts pledged support for preserving open spaces and working to develop a county utility as an alternative to SDG&E.
MAYOR FILNER ORDERS HALT TO PROSECUTION OF ZONING CODE VIOLATIONS FOR MEDICAL MARIJUANA DISPENSARIES
By Miriam Raftery
January 10, 2013 (San Diego)-- Mayor Bob Filner today announced that he has asked the Neighborhood Code Compliance Department and the Police Department to temporarily halt all prosecutions of city zoning code violations when it comes to medical marijuana dispensaries (letters attached), pending development of new regulations.
"As I made very clear during my campaign for Mayor, I support the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes and am committed to ensuring the people who legitimately need it for relief of pain are not kept from accessing it," Mayor Filner said. "I also want to assure the residents of San Diego that there will be the utmost safeguards surrounding these dispensaries. They will not be near schools, playgrounds or any areas where children might gather. Nor will they be allowed to infringe on the quality of life in any neighborhood."
January 10, 2013 (Casa de Oro) – A destroyed half of a resident in the 4100 block of Avoyer Place in Casa de Oro this morning. At first, residents thought smoke in the kitchen area was due to cooking, until one went outside and saw smoke coming from under the garage. Opening the door, he saw fire erupt into massive flames which quickly spread from the garage into the attic and home.
“With the screams of ‘fire’, family members began to evacuate,” said Leonard Villareal with San Miguel Fire District. “Residents inside the home had to carry the elderly female homeowner to safety. Another neighbor entered the home and carried a young woman who was asleep a back bedroom to safety. Another neighbor entered the home and carried a young woman who was asleep in a back bedroom to safety.”
January 10, 2013 (Alpine) -- Would you know how to respond if your child stopped breathing or if someone you love had a heart attack? Save-A-Heart will be conducting a CPR class at the Alpine Fitness Club, 1620 Alpine Blvd Suite 101 on Saturday Jan. 19th from 9am to 11am.
By Miriam Raftery
January 10, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) -- How long can we expect wind turbines built in our region to last? It’s a key question, since early wear and tear can sharply reduce efficiency, sticking ratepayers with hefty electricity bills. Now, a new study of 3,000 wind turbines finds that they are wearing down faster than manufacturers expected. The study, which claims to be the largest of its kind, examined both onshore and offshore turbines operating between 2000 and 2001.
January 10, 2013 (San Diego’s East County)--ECM World Watch helps you be an informed citizen about important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflect all voices and views, we include links to a wide variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views. Top world and U.S. headlines include:
- Congress less popular than cockroaches (Salon)
- High court to tackle Native American adoption dispute (CNN)
- Congress lets Violence Against Women Act wither away (MSNBC)
- New immigration policy aims to limit family separations (KPBS)
- Disappearing Mule Deer A New Reality Throughout Western U.S. (NPR)
- Gabrielle Giffords takes on the gun lobby (CNN)
- Texas school can force teenager to wear locator chip: judge (Reuters)
- Hillary Clinton released from hospital after treatment of blood clot (Los Angeles Times)
- Fiscal cliff deal sneaks in Wall Street gifts, NASCAR perks (Huffington Post)
- Al Jazeera buys Al Gore’s Current TV (CBS)
- Canadian oil sands pollute nearby lakes. Report is blow to Keystone pipeline.(Christian Science Monitor)
- State Department made "grievous mistake" over Benghazi: Senate report (Reuters)
- Indian proposes ban on child labor (Washington Post)
- UN says more than 60,000 dead in Syrian civil war (U-T San Diego)
- Malala's father given diplomatic role in UK(U-T San Diego)
- Protecting Native rights: idle no more (LA Progressive)
- Biofuels cause pollution, not as green as thought - study (Reuters)
- Online comments hurt science understanding, study finds (Journal of Science)
Read more for excerpts and links to full stories.
January 10, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – Alpine resident Jeff Campbell, a realtor with Jeff Campbell & Associates, will be installed as 2013 president of the 1,900-member Pacific Southwest Association of Realtors at PSAR’s 2013 board of directors installation dinner and celebration on Friday, Jan. 18. The event starts at 6 p.m. at the Bonita Golf Course, 5540 Sweetwater Road, in Bonita. Seats cost $45 per person, or $400 for a table of eight. Register online at www.psar.org or www.esdcar.org, or phone (619) 421-7811 or (619) 579-0333.
By Ryan Zuckerman, Homehub.com
After a few years of a down economy and real estate market, the sun is rising again, as things turn around for the housing market in San Diego. How you might ask? Here are HomeHub.com's top three reasons why we believe the future is a bright for the real estate market in San Diego.
Brain cancer, sperm damage among risks
January 8, 2012 (New York)-- A new report by the BioInitiative Working Group 2012 says that evidence for risks to health has substantially increased since 2007 from electromagnetic fields and wireless technologies (radiofrequency radiation). The Report reviews over 1800 new scientific studies. Cell phone users, parents-to-be, young children and pregnant women are at particular risk.
January 10, 2013--(San Diego’s East County)--East County Roundup highlights top stories of interest to East County and San Diego’s inland regions, published in other media. This week’s top “Roundup” headlines include:
- California's Child Population Projected To Drop Significantly (KPBS)
- Jerry Brown defiant in fight over prison overcrowding (Sacramento Bee)
- California man says he can drive in carpool lane with corporation papers (U.S. News)
- California Conditionally Approved to Run Its Own Health Insurance Market (KPBS)
- Parks Department Investigation Shows Intentional Hiding of Funds ( KPBS)
- Sierra snowpack has water managers happy so far (KPBS)
- Yosemite plan would ease traffic, shut ice rink (Sacramento Bee)
- Great-granny student body president at Grossmont: If I can do it, so can you (U-T San Diego)
- Bald eagles nesting in Ramona (10 News)
- Unmanned aerial vehicles and drone surveillance issues (IVN San Diego)
- La Mesa 2012: 100 years in the making (La Mesa Today)
- GOP picks Latina to lead local party (U-T San Diego)
- Day of service, Filner speech on tap for MLK Day (San Diego Free Press)
- Does new UCAN board want reform? (SD Reader)
- 3 more indicted in South Bay corruption probe (U-T San Diego)
- Indictments rain down across South Bay (NBC San Diego)
- Is Bob Filner canceling San Diego's Earth Day? U-T San Diego)
Read more for excerpts and links to full stories.
January 10, 2013 (La Mesa) – In an on-going commitment to communicate with residents, all five members of the La Mesa City Council will host two Town Hall Meetings. The open-forum sessions are scheduled at the following locations:
By Jamie Reno, The Reno Dispatch
January 10, 2013 (Washington, D.C.) – The U.S. Supreme Court has announced that it will not hear arguments in an historic lawsuit filed by two veterans groups in 2007 against the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The lawsuit, Veterans for Common Sense v. Shinseki, demanded that the VA fix its broken mental health care system.
Last May, a federal appeals court in California voted 10–1 to dismiss the case, ruling that only Congress or the president has the authority to direct changes on how veterans are treated. The decision overturned a 2–1 ruling in 2011 by the same court, which said that the department’s “unchecked incompetence has gone on long enough,” and permitted the plaintiffs to ask a federal judge to order changes in the VA.
January 10, 2013 (San Diego) – People aren't the only ones who value a dry, cozy home in cold weather according to Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna. Rodents do, too. "As it gets colder, everything that was out tends to want to find some sort of harbor inside," says Chief DiGiovanna. They scurry in our walls and above our heads during the night, they raid our food and ruin it with their feces, and they reproduce wildly, creating more and more inhabitants for us to worry about. Rats, mice and squirrels also do a lot of damage to your home's structure, insulation, pipes and even electrical wiring.
January 10, 2013 (Alpine) – The public is invited to the U.S. Border Patrol’s East County Community Forum on January 16 at 6 p.m. The forum will be held in the Alpine Elementary School auditorium, 1850 Alpine Boulevard in Alpine.
The forum will include discussion of community concerns, East County security threats, and the 2012-2016 Strategic Plan. RSVPs are requested to Michael Scappechio, Border Community Liaison Coordinator, at (619)216 4259 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Miriam Raftery
January 10, 2013 (San Diego’s East County)—Expect chilly temperatures through the weekend as a cold front sweeps into the region. A winter storm warning has been issued for mountains and deserts today, with snow levels dropping to as low as 2000 feet tonight. That’s low enough to bring snow to Interstate 8 in East County east of Alpine. Rain is forecast for areas west of the mountains.
Snow is expected to impact the following areas today, dropping even lower tonight: Cuyamaca, Descanso, Julian, Mount Laguna, Pine Valley, Ranchitta, Santa Ysabel, and Warner Springs. Visibility could be reduced to zero from blowing and drifting snow. This weather could be deadly for hikers and campers caught unprepared, the National Weather Service warns.
A high wind warning has also been issued for mountain and desert areas, with gusts up to 65 mp and sustained winds of 25-30 mph. forecast. In coastal areas, flooding and rip currents are expected to produce hazardous conditions.
By Miriam Raftery
Jaunary 9, 2013 (La Mesa) – Mayor Art Madrid reflected on the past, praised the city’s present accomplishments, and looked ahead to the future in his annual city audit report delivered on January 8 in the City’s Centennial year.
“I dare say that in many ways we are glad to see 2012 in our rear view mirror,” he said, citing budget cuts by the state among the city's biggest challenges in the past year. Fiscal challenges will continue, he predicted, as Congress embarks on the federal budget negotiations battle. “We may be seeing the last of the Community Development Block Grants, CDBG and Housing Assistance Programs, plus other vital safety net programs that assist certain members of our society.”
Mayor Madrid also named climate change and environmental concerns among the key challenges ahead, spoken in a week when the National CIimatic Office announced that 2012 was the hottest year on record in the U.S. “What is the role of local governments, including La Mesa, in addressing these problems? First choosing facts and science over politics, acknowledge that these issues exist, and define their impact on our city by evaluating the costs and consequences of doing nothing,” said Madrid.
By Mark Gabrish Conlan
The views expressed in this column reflect the views of the columnist and do not necessarily reflect the views of East County Magazine.
January 10, 2013 (San Diego) -- The first part of the “fiscal cliff” debate is over — and the Republicans won. That’s not the impression you’ll get from the corporate media, either the “objective” mainstream or the Right-wing media party of talk radio and Fox News. The mainstream media are reporting the swift passage of a bill through both houses of Congress continuing the Bush-era tax cuts for all Americans making $400,000 per year ($450,000 per couple) as a triumph for President Obama and at least a partial fulfillment of his pledge in both Presidential campaigns for a (slight) tax increase on the wealthiest Americans. (Ironically, the $400,000 at which the restored tax rates kick in also happens to be the salary of the President.) But the bill is actually a slap-dash scheme thrown together at the last minute to keep taxes from returning to Clinton-era levels for all Americans — and it leaves the Republicans with yet another opportunity to hold the American economy hostage and demand draconian cuts to what’s left of the social safety net when Congress next has to raise the U.S. debt ceiling in two months.
January 9, 2013 (Anza Borrego) – Daren Sefcik photographed these spectacular images in the Anza Borrego Desert State Park. This endangered Peninsular Bighorn Sheep ram was spotted in a canyon between Potrero and Squaw canyons near Agua Caliente campground. “We were out backpacking for four days through there, “Sefcik says. He also captured this beautiful sunrise over Whale Peak, photographed from Fish Creek.
January 9, 2013 (Ramona) – The Oasis Camel Dairy opens its doors for tours on January 13 and February 10 from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. Enjoy a humorous and intimate hour with the camels and tour the facilities and pastures of the farm.
January 9, 2013 (San Diego)--Mayor Bob Filner has announced his staffing team at City Hall. The appointments reflect San Diego’s diversity: over 50% are women, 38% Latino, 21% African-American, 4% Asian Pacific Islander as well as staff from the lesbian, gay, bisexual/transgender community.
“When I campaigned for Mayor, I pledged that everyone would have a seat at the table, and that includes in my administration. I am proud to lead this team of talented and dedicated women and men. Together we will work hard for the citizens of San Diego,” said Mayor Bob Filner, who also released salaries of his staffers as part of his pledge toward transparency.
January 9, 2013 (San Diego) –In response to the long-time needs and present demands of the Vietnamese community, the Little Saigon Foundation is opening a Vietnamese Community Center in order to create a space for social services and cultural interaction. Early services include a Vietnamese Language School, Youth Leadership Development, Translation services, and physical health programs such as “Càng Khôn Thập Linh” (a combination of Tai-chi and yoga), as well as international ballroom dance. With spaces offered to local community groups to meet and hold events, the Center is the first Vietnamese Community Center in City Heights. Up until now, the organization has been operating on mostly the support of volunteers, but is now looking to add permanent paid staff. As such, the organizations will host the Little Saigon Fundraising and Award Dinner on Jan. 13 from 6 p.m. – 11 p.m. at the Lucky Star Restaurant, 3894 54th St., San Diego.
By Miriam Raftery
January 8, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – ECM has previously reported about serious health problems experienced by people living near the Shirley Wind Farm in Wisconsin, where county health officials sought emergency declaration for families forced to relocate. That’s relevant here in East County, where four industrial-scale wind energy facilities propose to place turbines close to homes.
Now a Public Service Commission study has proven “dangerous levels” of infrasound generated by those turbines. Four acoustical experts conducted C-weighted sound tests in December and found high readings oflow-frequency noise, or infrasound. One researcher became ill himself with symptoms similar to those experience by residents. Symptoms of the afflicted families include heart palpitations, ear infections, muscle and join pain, and general malaise.
SANTEE RESIDENT PRODUCES FREE FAMILY ARTS & LITERACY PROGRAM AT THE SALVATION ARMY KROC CENTER JAN. 31
January 9, 2013 (San Diego) -- Local master teaching artist and educator Jerry Hager and The San Diego State University Performing Arts Troupe present “The Enchanted Bookshoppe” as part of the Free Family Arts and Literacy Connection series on January 31 at 6:30 p.m. at The Salvation Army Kroc Center’s multipurpose room at 6605 University Avenue, San Diego. The Free Family Arts and Literacy series is a partnership between The Salvation Army Kroc Center and Young Audiences of San Diego.
January 9, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – The Palomar Ranger District of the Cleveland National Forest will conduct prescribed burning from January 15, 2013 through June 30, 2013 when weather and fuel moisture conditions permit. This vegetation removal is for the purpose of hazardous fuels reduction, community defense zone maintenance and forest health. The prescribed burning will take place at various locations on the District including Palomar Mountain, Ramona, San Diego Country Estates, Sunshine Summit and Aguanga. The projects will cover approximately 700 acres. Some drifting smoke may be visible during the period of burning.
Residents and other public may call Battalion Chief Tim Gray at 619-902-1414 for more information.
By Miriam Raftery
January 9, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – Spanish utility giant Iberdrola Renewables still plans on “going ahead with Tule Wind” in McCain Valley near Boulevard despite a string of financial setbacks, Paul Copleman, media relations spokesman at Iberdrola USA, told ECM.
Iberdrola, the world’s largest operator of wind farms, sold off $1.1 billion in assets in 2012 to reduce its staggering 32 million euros of debt as the company's Standard and Poors Rating teetered just above junk bond status. Assets sold included 32 wind farms in France to GE.
Iberdrola also divested itself of some natural gas assets and in the U .S., Energy Network, Energetix and NYSEG Solutions. In addition, the company has has quietly abandoned efforts to pursue at least one U.S. wind project and potentially more.
Renowned Doctor’s Simple Tips To Help Turn the Toxic Tide
January 9, 2013 (San Diego)--Dr. Paul Thompson is a nationally renowned surgeon and age management practitioner with the Cenegenics Medical Institute. He has helped patients around the country reverse diabetes, combat obesity, fight off genetic health risks, and has guided them to living longer and healthier lives. Dr. Thompson’s Tips (www.drthompsonstips.com / Twitter: @drthompsonstips) have been featured by media outlets nationally, including national media outlets.
By Miriam Raftery
January 8, 2013 (San Diego)—Samuel McDowell, 72, has been charged with the murder of three women in Los Angeles. But authorities reveal he has lived in 24 states and has a long history of violence—including vicious assaults on women here in San Diego back in the 1980s. He lived in San Diego in the ‘80s and in El Centro in the ‘90s and early 2000s.
He was convicted of assault locally, including strangling a prostitute and throwing another woman out of his car on Highway 94 after sexually assaulting her. Yet he was soon back on the streets after serving brief time behind bars. Prior to that time he was acquitted of attempted murder in Florida and suspected of murder and attempted murder in Mississippi.