EAST COUNTY ROUNDUP: LOCAL AND STATEWIDE NEWS

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October 11, 2017 (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:

LOCAL

STATE

For excerpts and links to full stories, click “read more” and scroll down.

LOCAL

Alpine man reflects on recovery after Vegas shooting (NBC 7)

Doctors are still uncertain if Mike Caster will be able to walk again… On Nov. 2, The Comedy Palace in Clairemont will donate all proceeds from the show to help Caster with his recovery. For more information, click here.

A GoFundMe page has also been set up to help pay for Caster's medical expenses.

SDG&E wants to raise rates 11 percent, starting in two years (San Diego Union-Tribune)

San Diego Gas & Electric filed a request with state regulators late Friday afternoon, asking for an 11 percent rate increase in 2019 and running through 2022.

Lemon Grove Councilman, City Manager accused of squelching free speech (San Diego Union-Tribune)

A community activist has filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against Lemon Grove City Councilman Jerry Jones and City Manager Lydia Romero, alleging they curtailed his free speech by retaliating against him for comments on Facebook.

New homeless camp area opens in San Diego (10 News)

The city of San Diego Monday opened a camping area for the homeless, with 24-hour security, bathrooms and storage.

Following the Money in San Diego’s Community Choice Debate (KPBS)

Many community choice skeptics have one thing in common: financial support from SDG&E, a company that has fought the expansion of community choice statewide.

Clear the Air Coalition’s Ties to Sempra Aren’t Always Clear to the Public (Voice of San Diego)

A new group known as the Clear the Air coalition has risen up to discourage the city of San Diego from taking on San Diego Gas & Electric.

Sempra, Chamber lobbying asks city to put government-run electricity program on ice (San Diego Union-Tribune)

debate is nearing a boiling point over whether the city of San Diego should form a government-run alternative to San Diego Gas & Electric — a move that could foreshadow a massive overhaul of electrical markets across California.

Padre Dam’s East County water purification project moves forward (Water World)

Padre Dam Municipal Water District's Board of Directors unanimously approved a contract for the next phase of work on the East County Advanced Water Purification Program. The project, which is expected to produce up to 30% of East County's water by 2023, is a collaboration between Padre Dam, Helix Water District, the City of El Cajon and the County of San Diego.

San Diego's historic Santa Fe Depot is about to be sold (San Diego Union-Tribune)

The Santa Fe Depot, one of the region’s most historic landmarks, is being sold to a local private investor with escrow due to close the first week of November.

Water board reports highlighted health risk before hepatitis outbreak (San Diego Union-Tribune)

San Diego officials were informed repeatedly of the dangers of disease-carrying runoff from homeless encampments into area waterways, as far as a decade before the current hepatitis A crisis spurred action.

Trolley workers fear hepatitis from riders who use trains as bathrooms (San Diego Union-Tribune)

Workers in charge of maintaining San Diego trolleys say homeless people regularly urinate and defecate inside the trains, and the hepatitis A outbreak across the county has them worried they may be infected.

STATE

Battle on to halt march of Northern Calif. wildfires that have killed 17, destroyed 2,000 structures (San Francisco Chronicle)

Thousands of firefighters fought the aggressive march of wind-whipped wildfires that raged out of control Tuesday in Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino and Yuba counties — and the death toll rose to 17 as authorities began the grim task of excavating for bodies amid up to 3,000 ruined homes and businesses. The horror of the disaster was underscored by a desperate effort by people to find relatives who have not been heard from, a problem complicated by downed cell phone towers. In Sonoma County alone, officials had 183 reports of missing people.

Power lines linked to wine country fires (San Jose Mercury News)

As the first reports came in Sunday night of numerous fires that would grow into one of the most destructive wildfire disasters in California history, emergency dispatchers in Sonoma County received multiple calls of power lines falling down and electrical transformers exploding.

Winless Chargers are having an awful time trying to grow roots in Los Angeles (LA Times)

It’s a process. So is a root canal. 

224 new Calif. laws signed, 28 vetoed: list (Patch)

Gov. Jerry Brown has been very busy. Learn about the all the newest legislation here.

New California law allows sex offenders to be removed from registry (San Francisco Chronicle)

…The bill allows most sex offenders to petition beginning in 2021 to be removed from both the public and the police registries 10 to 20 years after they are released from prison, as long as they have not committed another serious or violent felony or sex crime.

If Trump administration tries to sell public lands in California, a new state law says state gets first dibs (Los Angeles Times)

"This legislation gives the state a viable way to help prevent the unthinkable sell-off of our public treasures, such as national parks, national monuments and national historic sites," said state Sen. Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica), the bill's author.

At least 10 dead and two wineries destroyed as massive wildfires devastating parts of Napa and Sonoma counties (Wine Spectator)

Gusting winds spread multiple blazes in a matter of hours, triggering mass evacuations and destroying Signorello Estate and Paradise Ridge wineries, as well as businesses and homes

Scientists foresee major changes in rainfall patterns across California (San Diego Union-Tribune)

Unprecedented amounts of rain fell across Northern California last winter, ending a damaging drought that reached to the southern edges of San Diego County. The dramatic turnaround was highlighted by a series of powerful, river-like storms that might become more frequent in the future. That’s the thinking of many scientists, including Marty Ralph, director of the Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes at UC San Diego’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and Scripps researcher Alexander “Sasha” Gershunov.