HUNTER, TRUMP AND ISSA REFUSE DISASTER AID SUPPORT FOR CALIFORNIA WILDFIRE VICTIMS; FEDS PROVIDE NOT ONE PENNY

SAVING THOSE WHO SAVE OTHERS: A RETIRED CHIEF AIMS TO STOP FIREFIGHTER SUICIDES

FIRE WEATHER FORECAST

WHY I VOTED FOR THE TEMPORARY BAN ON THE FREE DISTRIBUTION OF FOOD TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC IN PUBLIC SPACES

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS NOV. 24-DEC. 17

EL CAJON CHALDEAN COMMUNITY HOLDS RALLY CALLING ON U.S. AND IRAQ TO SAVE CHRISTIAN FAMILIES FROM GENOCIDE

THE SHOWS WILL GO ON: EL CAJON POISED TO COMPLETE DEAL WITH LIVE NATION TO REOPEN ECPAC

COVERT CANYON SHOOTING SITE IN ALPINE IS IN DEFAULT ON PAYMENTS

MITCHELL SETS SCHOOL RECORD AS AZTECS MEN'S BASKETBALL DOWNS EASTERN ILLINOIS

TAX BILL PASSES HOUSE, OPPOSED BY 4 OF 5 SAN DIEGO CONGRESSIONAL MEMBERS: SENATE ADDS HEALTHCARE REPEAL TO TAX MEASURE

CHICKEN AND TURKEY SALADS RECALLED BY TRADER JOE’S

WARM THANKSGIVING FORECAST

News

MEXICO BATTERED BY 8.1 EARTHQUAKE, TSUNAMI AND A HURRICANE

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 8, 2017 (San Diego) – An 8.1 earthquake has struck Mexico off the west coast near Chiapas and Oaxaca overnight, killing at least several dozen people though that count is expected to rise dramatically.  The quake, the strongest in a century to hit Mexico, and aftershocks are triggering tsunamis, one measuring 3 foot already and potential of waves up to 10 feet tall, CNN reports:  http://www.cnn.com/2017/09/08/americas/earthquake-hits-off-the-coast-of-southern-mexico/index.html

Many more fatalities and major economic loss are expected, the U.S. Geologic Survey predicts:  https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us2000ahv0#executive

Meanwhile Mexico’s east coast is awash in heavy rains and strong winds from Hurricane Katia , a category 1 hurricane off Veracruz.  A hurricane warning is in effect for Cabo Rojo to Laguna Verde.

HURRICANE IRMA DEVASTATES CARRIBEAN ISLES: DANGEROUS STORM HEADS FOR FLORIDA

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photos:  Hurricane damage in the Caribbean, courtesy of Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States

September 7, 2017 (San Diego) – The Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) has issued a report on devastating wrought by Hurricane Irma, a powerful category 5 hurricane that smashed into multiple Caribbean islands and is now on track to hit Florida this weekend. Evacuations are ordered in every Florida county.  The storm could also veer north after Florida toward Georgia and the Carolinas.

BRUSH FIRE BURNING IN POTRERO

 

Update 5:02 p.m. - Forward spread has been stopped. Fire is still zero percent contained at 20 acres. Firefighting aircraft are on scene.

September 7, 2017 (Potrero)  4:52 p.m. -- A brush fire burning in Potrero, one mile west of the Tecate Port of Entry, is now 20 acres and zero percent contained, however forward spread has been stopped.

Cal Fire has named the blaze, which began within the hour,the #BorderFire9.

LOCAL, NATIONAL REACTIONS TO TRUMP’S REPEAL OF DACA

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 6, 2017 (San Diego) -- After the Trump administration announced repeal of DACA,  the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, thousands of people have taken to the streets in cities across the nation to rally in support of protecting the dreamers, young people brought to the U.S. as children by undocumented parents.  Those young people now face deportation under President Trump’s executive order, unless Congress takes action within six months to protect them.

TRUMP ENDS DACA, CONGRESS HAS SIX MONTHS TO SAVE DREAMERS FROM DEPORTATION

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo by Joan Creighton Little, via Facebook

Updated Sept. 10 to include comments from Rep. Duncan Hunter and candidate Josh Butner.

September 6, 2017 (San Diego) -- President Donald Trump’s Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, has announced he will end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that shields young people brought to the U.S. as children from deportation. But he gave Congress six months to pass legislation to change that, leaving an estimated 800,000 “dreamers” in limbo, fearful of being sent back to homelands that some don’t even remember, places where dangers caused many of their families to flee and seek safety in the U.S.

HURRICANE IRMA, STRONGEST EVER RECORDED, SLAMS INTO VIRGIN ISLANDS AND HEADS TO U.S. MAINLAND

 

East County News Service

September 6, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) - On the heels of Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Irma is now wreaking havoc in the Caribbean and is heading toward the U.S. mainland.

Irma is the strongest hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic, with wind speeds of 185 miles per hour. It slammed into the U.S. Virgin Islands as a category 5 hurricane, and is also soon expected to ravage Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory and other Caribbean islands.

COUNTY TO INSTALL HAND-WASHING STATIONS IN EL CAJON AFTER HEPATITIS OUTBREAK EXTENDS TO EAST COUNTY

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 5, 2017 (El Cajon) – Following a County declaration of a Hepatitis A emergency last Friday, with 70% of those cases among homeless people and/or illicit drug users, East County Magazine asked for information on El Cajon, which has a substantial homeless population.  Today, Councilman Gary Kendrick confirmed, “The County has identified that some of these cases have been within the city of El Cajon.”

TRUMP ANNOUNCES CONTRACTORS TO BUILD BORDER WALL PROTOTYPES IN SAN DIEGO, SHIFTS FUNDS FROM FEMA MEANT FOR DISASTER RELIEF

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo:  Department of Homeland Security

September 4, 2017 (San Diego) – Homeland Security in Thursday announced four companies chosen to build prototypes of a border wall in the Otay Mesa area in San Diego. President Donald Trump has threatened a government shut down if Congress won’t fund subsequent construction of a wall along most of the international U.S.-Mexico border in an upcoming spending bill. 

HEAR OUR INTERVIEW: JOSH BUTNER, EX- NAVY SEAL OFFICER AND SCHOOL BOARD TRUSTEE RUNNING FOR CONGRESS

 

By Miriam Raftery, East County Magazine

 

September 4, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – Josh Butner says he’s running for Congress against Representative Duncan Hunter in the 50th Congressional District to “put people first, not personal profit or special interest politics.” 

A former Navy Seal Lieutenant Commander and current trustee on the Jamul-Dulzura Union School District board, he wants to champion a strong public education, restore integrity, and provide strong leadership on issues ranging from foreign policy to helping military families to combating climate change.

East County Magazine’s Show recently sat down with Butner for an in-depth interview originally aired July 21 on KNSJ radio. Hear the full 42-minute interview by clicking the orange audio link, and scroll down for highlights. He is one of five Democrats in the race; two Republican challengers to Hunter have also announced intentions to run. With Hunter under a federal criminal probem, this race is drawing national attention.

Audio: 

SAN DIEGO LAWMAKERS BLAST “CRUELTY” OF TRUMP’S PLAN TO END DACA

 

By Chris Jennewein

Originally published by Times of San Diego, a member of the San Diego Online News Association

Photo: An Immigration and Customs Enforcement officer escorts a suspected undocumented immigrant. Courtesy ICE

September 4, 2017 (San Diego) -- A new report that President Trump plans to end protection from deportation for 800,000 undocumented immigrants who were brought to America as children drew sharp criticism from San Diego elected officials.

RESIDENTS CONCERNED OVER CATS FOUND CUT IN HALF OR MUTILATED IN EAST COUNTY

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: “Bootsie,” found dead and mutilated in Lemon Grove, one of several similar cat deaths in recent weeks in East County communities.

September 3, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – Residents in Spring Valley, Lemon Grove and Mt. Helix are voicing concerns after several cats were found cut in half, dismembered or eviscerated in recent weeks.  It is not yet known whether the gruesome finds were the result of human acts or animal predators.

MAJOR CALIFORNIA FIRES SCORCH FEDERAL FORESTS, YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, AND MAJOR CITIES: L.A. COUNTY A DISASTER AREA

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo left:  Los Angeles Air Ops via L.A. Fire Department; Jason Moore on Twitter

September 3, 2017 (San Diego) – The Border Fire near Dulzura is 100% contained. But across California, many far more major brush fires are blazing. Several local firefighting agencies have dispatched crews to aid in conflagrations across the state.

WIND ADVISORY ISSUED AS LIDIA REACHES SAN DIEGO

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 3, 2017 (San Diego) — The National Weather Service has issued a wind advisory in effect now through 10 p.m. tonight do to remnants of Tropical Storm Lidia, now downgraded to a tropical depression. Thunderstorms and rain are also impacting the region with heaviest rainfall likely on Mt. Laguna, where an inch of rain may fall.

FEDERAL JUDGE DISMISSES CASE OVER JAMUL CASINO BY FAMILY MEMBERS CLAIMING DESECRATION OF REMAINS

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Jamul Indian Village site before the casino

September 3, 2017 (Jamul) - U.S. District Judge Kimberly Mueller, Eastern District of California,  dismissed on August 29th an amended complaint in Rosales v. Dutschke which sought $4 million in damages for what plaintiffs contend was the illegal and unconstitutional desecration of Native American remains to make way for the Hollywood-Jamul San Diego Casino.

VEHICLE FROM RAMONA FOUND DOWN EMBANKMENT IN POWAY WITH WOMAN DEAD AT SCENE

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 2, 2017 (Ramona) — A blue 1997 GEO metro vehicle registered in Ramona was found down an embankment off westbound Poway Road, where it came to rest against two trees.  After a passerby reported the vehicle, deputies searched for victims and found a dead woman who had been ejected, near an open driver’s side door.

NINE DAMS IN SAN DIEGO COUNTY RANKED BELOW SATISFACTORY ON SAFETY, NEWLY RELEASED STATE DATA REVEALS

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo by Billy Ortiz: El Capitan Dam in Lakeside, ranked “fair” for safety, has an “extremely high “downstream hazard status for potential loss of life and property damage.

September 2, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) - The State of California on Friday released data on dam safety in California which found nine percent of dams statewide fall below satisfactory and could pose potential hazards in severe storms or earthquakes—including nine dams in San Diego County.

BRUSH FIRE HALTED IN LAKESIDE

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photos: Robert E. Younger

 

September 2, 2017 (Lakeside) – A vehicle fire on Wildcat Canyon Road  ignited dry brush, just north of Muth Valley Road and south of Pata Ranch Road. Named the Ranch Fire, it charred an estimated three-quarters of an acre this evening before forward spread was halted, Cal Fire reports. 

RESIDENTS WARNED TO BE WARY OF HURRICANE HARVEY SCAMS

 

Image credit:  PhotoSpin

September 2, 2017 (San Diego) - The San Diego County District Attorney’s Office warned residents to be careful when donating to charities that promise to help victims of Hurricane Harvey in Texas. The DA’s Office is offering important consumer advice and information to avoid becoming a victim of charity scams.

UPGRADED PARAMEDIC SERVICES EXTENDED TO MORE RURAL AND MOUNTAIN COMMUNITIES

 

By Yvette Urrea Moe, County of San Diego Communications Office

Photo:  Firefighter Paramedic Brenton Rowell from the Mt. Laguna County Fire Station is completing his morning checks of the Advanced Life Support gear.

September 2, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) -- A person suffering cardiac arrest or going into anaphylactic shock will receive immediate treatment from responding firefighter paramedics who were recently added to existing fire engine service in five communities.

BLACKWATER FOUNDER ACCUSED OF MURDER

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo, left: Erik Prince, Blackwater founder

September 1, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) -- Blackwater founder Erik Prince has been “implicated in murder,” the Nation reports. The article, written by journalist and author Jeremy Scahill, indicates that sworn statements filed in Federal Court on August 3rd allege that the private military company’s founder, Erik Prince launched a “crusade” to eliminate Muslims and Islam.Many East County residents will recall meeting Scahill, who visited Potrero and San Diego back in 2007.  Scahill came to warn local residents about serious ethical issues involving Blackwater, which was aiming to build a paramilitary training camp in a valley in Potrero. 

The Nation article reports that a former Blackwater employee and an ex-Marine who worked as a security operative for Blackwater both made explosive allegations in sworn statements claiming that Prince may have murdered or facilitated the murder of people who were cooperating with federal authorities investigating the company. Their identities are being kept secret for their own protection.

RAINS POSSIBLE, FREE SANDBAGS AVAILABLE

 

Even though the region’s heat wave continues, the National Weather Service is predicting San Diego County residents could see heavy rains, winds and thunderstorms this weekend, mainly on Sunday.

SDG&E ACTIVATES REDUCE YOUR USE REWARDS PROGRAM TODAY

 

 

Customers are encouraged to save energy to earn a bill credit

September 1, 2017 (San Diego) --   San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) has called a Reduce Your Use Rewards event for today, Friday, Sept. 1, due to continued hot weather throughout the region causing a rise in electric demand. To reduce strain on the electric grid, SDG&E is encouraging customers to reduce their energy use between 11 a.m.–6 p.m.

By doing so, those who are signed up for the program will be eligible to earn a bill credit of $.75 per kilowatt hour saved or $1.25 credit per kilowatt hour saved with enabling technology, like a smart thermostat. If you’re not on the Reduce Your Use rewards program, it’s not too late to join.

TROPICAL STORM LIDIA COULD BRING THUNDERSTORMS, ROUGH SEAS TO SAN DIEGO COUNTY THIS WEEKEND

 

East County News Service

September 1, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – If you’re  planning a picnic, barbecue or other outdoor activity this Labor Day weekend, be aware there’s a possibility of widespread showers and scattered thunderstorms due to tropical storm Lidia.

Tropical Storm Lidia has already wreaked havoc in Baja, Mexico, bringing flooding in Cabo San Lucas and closing airports at Cabo and La Paz. Some 20,000 tourists and thousands of residents have been evacuated to shelters there.

VOTER's WATCHDOG: CITIZENS OVERSIGHT FILES OPPOSITION TO AB-840, SAYS AMENDMENTS WOULD GUT ELECTION AUDITS IN CA

 

Watchdog group that won lawsuit says last-minute amendment inserted by election officials would allow 40 to 70 percent of ballots to be omitted from audits

By Miriam Raftery

September 1, 2017 (San Diego) --- Citizens' Oversight, a nonpartisan group that focuses on election integrity, announced today that it has filed written comments in opposition to CA AB-840, a bill which will make drastic changes to the one-percent manual tally of elections, which would omit 40% or more ballots from the scrutiny of this important audit process. Local Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez-Fletcher (D-San Diego) is a coauthor of the bill.

ECM asked Vu late Thursday for comments. Vu replied via email, “The amendment came through and is sponsored by the California Association of Clerks and Election Officials (CACEO) and is supported by the Secretary of State and the County."

SUCCESS! EAST COUNTY DINING CLUB ‘S PREMIERE PARTY DRAWS A CULINARY CROWD

 

 

Next event is Sept. 21 at Tiramisu Trattoria in La Mesa

September 1, 2017 (La Mesa) – Thanks to all who turned out to help make the launch of our East County Dining Club a big success! 

Over 75 people attend our premiere party  at Fabrison’s Country French Restaurant in  Jamul, where guests feasted on all-you-can-eat crepes and  savored wines from the award-winning Deerhorn Valley Vineyard.

If you haven’t yet joined our dining club (just $10 a year!) we strongly recommend doing so now since we expect future events to sell out.

East County Dining Club members  will receive early invitations and  first options to reserve space at all of our future special culinary events, two free drawing tickets at their next event, and a free “Best of East County” cookbook we are compiling with recipes from top restaurants, wineries, farms and more in our region. Join us to savor the flavors of the world at great restaurants here in East County!

BRUSH FIRE IN DULZURA'S BEE CANYON

 
 
East County Wildfire and Emergency Alerts

Update 11:54 a.m.  The Sheriff advised residents through Alert San Diego that  the fire is in the Bee Canyon area of Dulzura. No evacuations have been advised but residents are urged to stay tuned to local media and make sure your mobile phone is registered with AlertSanDiego to receive evacuation notices, www.ReadySanDiego.org and follow Cal Fire for updated fire information: https://twitter.com/CALFIRESANDIEGO

Update 11:40 a.m.  The fire is now 15 percent contained and has burned 120 acres, Cal Fire reports.

Update 10:45 a.m.  Fire is now 110 acres and still zero percent contained. SDG&E's helicopter, several fixed wing aircraft and over 220 firefighters are among the resources at the scene. 

September 1, 2017 (Dulzura) -- The #BorderFire burning in Dulzura has charred at least 50 acres of brush and is zero percent contained.  The blaze began at 5:40 a.m. near State Route 94 and Marron Valley Road. There are no road closures at this time. The fire is burning to the north and east.

Resources committed include 20 fire engines, 10 hand crews, 7 water tenders, 3 bulldozers, and 3 Type II helicopters.

You can view video and a map at Cal Fire's Twitter feed here:  https://twitter.com/CALFIRESANDIEGO

COUNTY PLAN TO SHORTEN AMBULANCE RESPONSE TIMES PRESENTED IN CREST TO FEW COMMUNITY MEMBERS

 

 

Improvements proposed after ECM investigative series on ambulance response times in unincorporated areas

 

By Kendra Sitton

 

August 30, 2017 (Crest) — Last week, County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Administrator Andy Parr met with local communities to ask for input on EMS’s plan to improve ambulance service to the rural parts of San Diego because "the status quo of 30 min is no longer acceptable."

 

The updated plan goes before the Board of Supervisors on Oct. 10. If approved, when the contracts of the three ambulance companies expire in the next few years, they will have to comply with the new plan which will shorten response time.

 

The actions follow a five-part special series by East County Magazine published  in 2015, investigating slow ambulance response times in some unincorporated areas and changes in county ambulance providers. (See links to our five-part series at the bottom of this article.)

ICE DEPLOYS TEAMS TO HELP IN HURRICANE RESCUES, SAYS IMMIGRATION ENFORCEMENT WON’T BE DONE AT EVACATION CENTERS OR OTHER SITES HELPING VICTIMS

 

Source:  U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

August 31, 2017 (San Diego) -- U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has deployed approximately 200 law enforcement personnel from Rapid Response Teams (RRTs) and Special Response Teams (SRTs) around the country, including San Diego, to provide security for search and rescue teams and to assist with search and rescue operations in Southeast Texas in response to Hurricane Harvey. 

ARIZONA REFUSES SPENT FUEL FROM SAN ONOFRE; DOCTOR’S GROUP CRITICIZES NUCLEAR WASTE SETTLEMENT PLAN

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: San Onofre nuclear facility, before its shutdown in 2013.

August 31, 2017 (San Diego) – Finding a safe place to store spent nuclear fuel from the shuttered San Onofre Nuclear Generating Stations is a daunting task. Yesterday, East County Magazine reported on a settlement reached between Citizens Oversight and Southern California Edison that aspires to move the radioactive waste away from the beach at San Onofre over the next couple of decades.

One of the proposed sites   is in Arizona. But now officials at Arizona Public Services Company, which operates the Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station west of Phoenix,  say they won’t take California’s nuclear wastes. 

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