YOU'RE INVITED! LAUNCH OF OUR EAST COUNTY DINING CLUB AUG. 25

WIEGHORST MUSEUM PRESENTS ART SHOW, RECEPTION TO BENEFIT PROMINENT WESTERN ARTIST JACK JORDAN

SILVERGATE THREATENS LITIGATION AFTER LA MESA CITY COUNCIL DEADLOCKS ON LITTLE FLOWER HAVEN REDEVELOPMENT

LA MESA VICE MAYOR QUITS REPUBLICAN PARTY OVER RACISM

TRUMP SHIFTS STANCE ON KKK AND NEO-NAZIS, HAS CANCELLED FUNDING TO COMBAT THEIR RECRUITING EFFORTS

CLEAR THE SHELTER DAYS: COUNTY WAIVES ADOPTION FEES ON AUGUST 19

WORLD WATCH: NATIONAL AND GLOBAL NEWS

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: AUG. 20-OCT. 22

HELIX WATER TO CONSIDER CREATING A CITIZENS ADVISORY COMMITTEE AT WEDNESDAY’S MEETING

COUNTY RELEASES DRAFT CLIMATE ACTION PLAN FOR PUBLIC COMMENT

PROST! THE 44TH ANNUAL LA MESA OKTOBERFEST OFFERS EXPANDED FESTIVAL GROUNDS, NEW OFFERINGS AND LONG-LOVED FAVORITES SEPT. 29-OCT. 1

3 DEAD, 35 INJURED AS WHITE SUPREMACIST RALLY TURNS VIOLENT

News

PASSAGES: FORMER ALPINE SUN EDITOR’S HUSBAND, GREG SCOTT, KILLED IN CAR ACCIDENT

 

By Miriam Raftery

July 9, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – Spring Valley resident Gregory Lawrence Scott, the father of two young children and husband of The Alpine Sun’s former editor Christy Scott, was killed in a car accident on I-15 on June 17th.   A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Christy and the couple’s children, Jacob,and Isabelle.

MORE HEAT RECORDS SCORCHED; BEACH WARNING ISSUED DUE TO LIGHTNING AND RIP CURRENT DANGERS

 

East County News Service

July 9, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – Sizzling temperatures on Friday, July 7th, shattered more records.  Borrego Springs reached 120 degrees on Friday, the hottest in 41 years.  Campo hit 108 and Ramona 102 degrees.   The highs reached triple digits again on Saturday, but relief from the heat is in sight, with a tropical storm over Mexico moving into the area today bringing gusty winds, thunderstorms and lightning over inland areas and beaches.

APTS PROPOSED ON LITTLE FLOWER HAVEN CONVENT SITE SET FOR HEARINGS IN LA MESA: DEVELOPER TO ADD AFFORDABLE HOUSING AS SWAP FOR FEWER PARKING SPACES

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Little Flower Haven circa 1954, via Postcards.com on City of La Mesa's website.

July 6, 2017 (La Mesa) – Two public meetings are set for Silvergate Development’s proposal to redevelop the former Little Flower Haven convent and nonprofit home for the elderly at 8585 La Mesa Blvd.  The Planning Commission will hold an informational-only meeting and environmental assessment on Wednesday, July 19 at 7 p.m.  The City Council will hold a hearing on the project on August 8th at 6 p.m.  Both meetings will be in Council Chambers at 8130 Alison Ave., La Mesa.

Plans submitted called for keeping the historic 1939 Spanish Mission style front structure and bell tower, which is eligible for listing in the California Register of Historical Resources. The property, recently sold, was formerly home to the Carmelite Sisters of the Divine Heart of Jesus.   The sisters have relocated to Texas, the Reader reported in March. 

SEARCH AND RESCUE LEADER DON PARKER FACES TOUGHEST CHALLENGE: BATTLING BRAIN CANCER

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo, left:  Sergeant Parker with his daughter, Sarah, sons Jonathan and Daniel, and wife, Missy.

July 5, 2017 (San Diego) – Countless families have been reunited with missing loved ones, or learned their fate, thanks to the tireless efforts of  Sheriff Search and Rescue Coordinator Don Parker.  Sergeant Parker, who retired in 2015, made a career out of helping others – and now the community is pulling together to bring financial help to Sergeant Parker, who was diagnosed in May with brain cancer.

INMATE FIREFIGHTER SUFFERS CHAINSAW INJURY FIGHTING FIRE IN LAKESIDE

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo credit Calif. Department of Corrections

July 5, 2017 (Lakeside) — An inmate firefighter has suffered a life-threatening injury after he lost control of a chainsaw that cut his leg, Fox 5 reports.

The firefighter was working at the scene of a brush fire that began around 1:30 p.m. near Olde Highway 80 and Los Coches Road in Lakeside.   Mobile homes were briefly threatened before firefighters got the blaze under control.

NATIONAL WEATHER REVISES FORECAST: THUNDERSTORMS AND LIGHTNING POSSIBLE THIS WEEKEND, BUT FLASH FLOODS UNLIKELY

 

East County News Service

July 5, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) -- Hot weather and possible thunderstorms are forecast for this weekend in our inland region, mainly in the mountains during afternoons and early evenings.  “Moisture will be limited, so at this time, any flash flood threat looks minimal, but dry lightning strikes may pose a wildfire threat,” the forecast from the National Weather Service in San Diego states, adding that heat watches, warnings or advisories may be issued in the valleys, mountains and deserts later this week.

DRAMATIC PHOTOS DEPICT BATTLE OF MOSUL

 

 

Allied forces gain ground: Iraqi Prime Minister declares end to ISIS caliphate, but plight of refugees remains dire

By Miriam Raftery; Photos by Kainoa Little

Photo, left:  Refugees flee the embattled city of Mosul

July 4, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) -- East County Magazine has obtained dramatic photos from the Battle of Mosul, taken in the Iraqi city during April 2017 by photographer Kainoa Little, who specializes in photographing war zones and refugees. 

His images show Iraqi federal police fighting to free Mosul from occupation by Islamic State, or ISIL, militants who seized the city in June 2014.  The photos poignantly depict the courage of soldiers and at times, fear, as they fight amid the ruins and also the anguish of residents and refugees fleeing the city. 

The battle captured in these April photos continues, with the allies gaining ground. Today, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al Abadi held a press conference to praise his troops for a “big victory in Mosul” including retaking what remains of the al-Nuri mosque in the old city, Associated Press reports. 

PASSAGES: BILL BODRY, CHALLENGE CENTER FOUNDER AND CHAMPION FOR THE DISABLED

 

 

East County News Service

July 4, 2017 (La Mesa) – William (Bill) Bodry, founder of the Challenge Center in La Mesa and long-time champion of the disabled, died at his home of heart failure on his 72nd birthday, June 15th 2017.  A celebrate of life to honor his memory will be held on July 15 at 12 noon at the Challenge Center in La Mesa.

Bodry founded the Challenge Center in 1987 after suffering a spinal cord injury from botched surgery that left him paralyzed at age 27, with no adequate facility for long-term rehabilitation.  The center has had amazing results helping patients with severe brain and spinal cord injuries, as ECM reported back in 2008, enabling many severely disabled patients to walk, talk and achieve independence.  In his interview, Bodry shared his dream:  for the program he founded at Challenge Center to someday become a national model replicated nationwide.

220 CITIES LOSING ALL PASSENGER TRAIN SERVICE PER TRUMP PLAN TO ELIMINATE ALL FEDERAL FUNDS FOR AMTRAK’S NATIONAL NETWORK

 

Source: National Association of Railroad Passengers (NARP)

Photo: Donald Trump, by Gage Skidmore

July 4, 2017 (San Diego) -- The National Association of Rail Passengers denounced the budget outline released by the Trump Administration, which slashes investment in transportation infrastructure. These cuts to Amtrak, transit, and commuter rail programs, and even air service to rural towns, would not only cost construction and manufacturing jobs, but place a disproportionate amount of pain on rural and working class communities.

VACANY ON SPRING VALLEY COMMUNITY PLANNING GROUP

 

East County News Service

July 3, 2017 (Spring Valley) — James Comeau resigned June 27th, from the Spring Valley Community Planning Group, creating a vacancy in seat 14, creating an immediate vacancy.  To apply¸ refer to the SD County Roster of Boards, Commissions and Committees on their web site at http://www.sdcounty.ca.gov/cob/.  The County Board of Supervisors will make an appointment to fill the vacancy after review, at a future meeting.

HIGHWAY 78 CLOSED DUE TO TRUCK OVERTURNED

 

July 3, 2017 (Ramona) -- State Route 78 is closed in both directions at Moma in the Ramona Trails area due to a semi-truck that overturned,  Cal Fire reports. 

The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that the vehicle was hauling chicken feed. The truck leaked hydraulic fuel and a clean-up is ongoing for the next couple of hours.

The driver was injured and transported to a hospital, CBS 8 reports.

SUPERVISOR JACOB AND RESIDENTS SPEAK OUT ON TRAFFIC CONCERNS NEAR JAMUL CASINO; TRIBE ISSUES RESPONSE. BOTH SIDES FAULT CALTRANS FOR DELAYS IN ROAD IMPROVEMENTS

 

Updated with corrections based on CHP data just received:  accidents spiked in 2015, before the casino opened. But DUI-related crashes are up.

By Miriam Raftery; Jonathan Goetz also contributed to this report

Photo by Jonathan Goetz

July 2, 2017 (Jamul) – Supervisor Dianne Jacob joined Jamul residents Friday in a press conference to share concerns over accidents along an 11-mile stretch of State Route 94.  The group also called for completion of promised roadway improvements that have not yet begun. 

The Jamul Indian Village has issued a response contending that the casino is being unfairly blamed for an uptick in accidents that may be related to other factors, and points a finger at CalTrans and Supervisor Jacob for delays in roadway improvements that the tribe says is due to Caltrans lacking land use authority.

LAWSUIT AGAINST GUHSD AND SUPERINTENDENT OVER REFUSAL TO TURN OVER EMAILS AND TEXTS ON PERSONAL DEVICES GETS BOOST FROM STATE SUPREME COURT RULING

 

By Miriam Raftery

July 2, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – San Diegans for Open Government (SDOG), a government watchdog group, filed a lawsuit in January against the Grossmont Union High School District and Superintendent Tim Glover.  It alleges that the defendants “intentionally used personal e-mail accounts and text-messaging devices (e.g., mobile phones and tablets) to communicate about illegal political activity they were conducting—without being subject to public scrutiny—on Measure BB appearing on the November ballot.”

UBER DRIVER INJURED IN DRIVE-BY SHOOTING IN SPRING VALLEY

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

July 1, 2017 (Spring Valley ) – Two vehicles were struck in a drive-by shooting this evening near the intersection of Jamacha Road and Gillespie Drive in the La Presa area of Spring Valley, sending the driver of a white Ford Focis to the hospital, NBC 7 reports.

  Witnesses reported hearing 10 to 11 shots around 5:17 p.m.  A witness told Fox 5 that he saw the white car hit a corner and rushed to help.  “I unlocked the door and he was riddled with bullets on his right side. The right side of his passenger door was riddled with bullets,”  the witness told Fox 5, adding that he used the driver’s phone to speak with a 911 dispatcher and applied pressure to the driver’s wounds until emergency personnel arrived.

PASSAGES: MANUEL MIGUEL MORENO DIES OF INJURIES IN CAR CRASH

 

Services set for July 2nd and 3rd

July 1, 2017 (Lemon Grove) – Manuel Miguel Moreno, a Lemon Grove resident who was raised in Santee, passed away June 26th at Grossmont Hospital of injuries from a car crash eight months ago in Ramona. He was surrounded by his family.

MOTORCYCLIST SUFFERS SERIOUS INJURIES AFTER STRIKING VEHICLE IN LA MESA AT HIGH SPEED ON I-8

 

By Miriam Raftery

July 1, 2017 (La Mesa) – A motorcyclist crashed into the rear of a vehicle on Interstate 8 east in La Mesa yesterday near the Jackson Drive exit shortly before noon.  The motorcyclist was reportedly unconscious following the crash.

STAY CLEAR OF DANGER THIS FOURTH OF JULY

 

 

Four killed, 11,000 injured last year by fireworks nationwide

By Yvette Urrea Moe, County of San Diego Communications Office:

Image credit: San Diego County Sheriff's Department

June 30, 2017 (San Diego) - The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department wants everyone to have a safe Independence Day free of serious injuries or jail time. That means never driving if you’ve been drinking alcohol or taking drugs (including medications that impair your driving), never setting off illegal fireworks and not allowing juveniles to drink alcohol at your house party.

COURT HALTS PROP 63 REQUIREMENT TO DISPOSE OF LARGE-CAPACITY AMMUNITION MAGAZINES

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Vigil following 2015 San Bernardino shooting

June 30, 2017 (Sacramento) – U.S. District judge Roger Benitez with California’s Southern District Court has granted a preliminary injunction sought by the National Rifle Association, temporarily blocking part of Proposition 63 that required Californians to dispose of large-capacity ammunition magazines by Saturday or face fines and potentially, jail time.

NEW HOME NEEDED FOR OUR VOLUNTEER’S BEAGLE, “ANGUS”

 

By Miriam Raftery

June 30, 2017 (Santee) – Our volunteer at East County Magazine, Kim Cooney,  needs a new home for her 9-year-old beagle, Angus.  She says Angus is good with children, cats and non-aggressive dogs.

Kim is moving out of state and is also slated for knee surgery. She is no longer able to care for and walk Angus, so she needs to find him a new home immediately.  

ALPINE PLANNING GROUP CENSURES MEMBER LOU RUSSO OVER ALLEGED VIOLATIONS OF ETHICS CODE AND BROWN ACT

 

By Miriam Raftery

Updated with responses from planning group members Russo and Martinez.

June 30, 2017 (Alpine) – The Alpine Community Planning Group (ACPG) voted at its meeting last week to censure member Lou Russo for violation of the Group’s code of ethics. The vote was unanimous with the exception of Russo. 

COMMUNITY FORUM WITH EL CAJON MAYOR WELLS AND POLICE CHIEF DAVIS ADDRESSES CITIZENS’ CONCERNS ON HOMELESS ENCAMPMENTS

 

Hear audio of the meeting: 

http://www.mediafire.com/file/vf31iozwi183wxj/ElCajonHomelessForum1.mp3

By Paul Kruze

June 30, 2017 (El Cajon) -- Spurred on by a mentally ill homeless woman who made her street home in front of a shuttered El Cajon motel on East Main Street earlier this month and numerous homeless individuals settling in central El Cajon, some 50 El Cajon residents gathered in the Community Room at the El Cajon Police Department for a town hall meeting last Monday night hosted by El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells and Chief of Police Jeff Davis.

DO RATTLESNAKE VACCINES FOR DOGS REALLY WORK?

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Mojave rattlesnake

June 28, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – The canine rattlesnake vaccine has been administered to over 100,000 dogs since it came on the market in the early 2000s. While only about 1 percent of dogs had side effects, the bad news is “there remains little fact-based data to support the efficacy of the vaccine to date,” according to Valerie Wiebe, Pharm.D with the University of California, Davis. In other words, it’s not clear if the vaccine actually works.

GAY PARENTS HAVE RIGHT TO BE LISTED ON BIRTH CERTIFICATES, SUPREME COURT RULES

 

By Miriam Raftery

June 27, 2017 (Washington D.C.) – States must list married same-sex couples on children’s birth certificates, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Monday.  The ruling in the case, Pavan v. Smith, extends marriage rights earlier granted by the high court’s decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, which found the U.S. Constitution protected marriage rights for gay and lesbian couples. 

STATE ROUTE 67 LANE CLOSURES IN RAMONA AREA

 

East County News Service

June 27, 2017 (Ramona) – Lane closures on State Route 67 at the Highland Valley Road/Dye Road intersection are slated from 7 p.m .to  5 a.m. tonight as well as Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday nights.   At least one lane will remain open, but motorists are advised to expect traffic delays, Cal Trans has announced.

The closure is due to paving and road striping work.  Highway workers will be directing traffic in the affected area.

BRUSH FIRE IN DEHESA: FORWARD SPREAD HALTED

 

Update 12:05 p.m. - The fire is now 30% contained, per Cal Fire.

By Miriam Raftery

Photo by Gloria Chadwick

June 27, 2017 (Dehesa) -- Cal Fire's incident commander reports that forward spread has been stopped on a 20-acre brush fire in Dehesa. The Sloane Fire started at Sloane Canyon east of Dehesa Road in East County mid-morning. 

No structures are threatened.

SUPREME COURT ISSUES COMPROMISE ORDER ON TRUMP TRAVEL BAN

 

Ruling allows immigration from six Muslim nations for those with ties to U.S., but bans others until full case is heard this fall; refugees hardest hit by decision

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Syrian refugee boy's future remains in limbo

June 27, 2017 (Washington D.C.) – The U.S. Supreme Court has issued a temporary order reinstating a portion of President Donald Trump’s travel ban previously halted by multiple appellate courts.  The decision allows immigration to continue from six Muslim nations (Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen) but only for people with a “bona fide relationship” to the U.S.  The temporary order is in place until the high court hears the case in the fall and issues a ruling.

The definition of such relationship or ties is not spelled out, but legal experts generally agree that travelers with family in the U.S., jobs or job offers, and students at U.S. universities will be protected.  It is unclear whether others, such as those with medical conditions seeking treatment here, would be banned or not. Visitors seeking visas who don’t have ties here would be barred from entry.  Hardest hit would be refugees fleeing violence, whose hopes of a brighter future in America will now be dashed unless they already have family or other ties in the U.S., international aid groups warn.

JUDGE TEMPORARILY HALTS DEPORTATIONS OF IRAQIS NATIONWIDE

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Iraq prayer vigil held in El Cajon in July 2014. El Cajon is home to 40,000  or more Iraqi-Chaldean Christians as well as Kurds and other Iraqi religious minorities.

June 27, 2017 (San Diego ) – A federal judge yesterday issued a nationwide two-week ban on deportation of  Iraqi-Americans back to Iraq.  The ruling was prompted by a lawsuit on behalf of 114 Iraqis  rounded up and detained in  Detroit, mainly Christian Chaldeans, but the ban applies broadly to 1,400 Iraqis under deportation orders nationwide.

U.S. District Judge Mark Goldsmith issued the stay to give him time to determine whether his court has jurisdiction to weigh in on the detainees’ fears that deportation to Iraq could lead to death, torture or persecution, the Chicago Tribune reports.  Goldsmith wrote, “Such harm far outweighs any interest that government may have in proceeding with the removals immediately.”

WOMAN FATALLY STRUCK BY TEEN DRIVER IN EL CAJON

 

East Couty News Service

June 27, 2017 (El Cajon ) – A woman in her 50s who was walking home from the grocery store crossed North Mollison Avenue near Main Street outside of a marked intersection last night at 8:45. She was struck by a black Acura sedan driven by a 19-year-old driver.  Paramedics transported the woman to a hospital, where she later died.

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