November 29, 2017 (San Diego) — A statewide gas tax hike that took effect November 1st under Senate Bill 1 raised gas excise taxes by 12 cents a gallon, also hiking up diesel fuel rates. An increase in vehicle registration fees is also slated to go into effect in January. The money is to be used to fix roads, highways and bridges as well as improving public transit.
November 29, 2017 (Escondido) -- Libraries are vital sources of information for students, researchers, and the public. But now, the city of Escondido has voted to privatize its public library on Kalmia Street by hiring Library Systems, a Maryland-based company, over the objections of the library’s trustees. The city claims it could save $400,000 a year through private operation of the library.
November 29, 2017 (Spring Valley) -- Tragedy has struck a Spring Valley family after George and Gladys Novinger were swept over the towering Rainbow Falls in Hilo, Hawaii over the weekend. Gladys was found unconscious and taken to a hospital, where she died. Her husband is presumed dead, though his body has not yet been recovered and may have been washed out to sea, according to Hawaii authorities.
November 27, 2017 (El Cajon) – As cities grapple with how to regulate marijuana-based businesses, Outliers Collective, the county’s only legally licensed medical cannabis dispensary provides evidence of the advantages of licensing and regulating facilities to provide product safety testing for consumers, security for employees, and avoid problems caused by illegal pot shops such as crime, fire hazards, and products contaminated with pesticides.
November 22, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – Last year, 69 firefighters in the U.S. died in the line of duty, the National Fire Protection Association reports. But far more -- 139 – took their own lives.
So far this year, 86 firefighters have been lost through suicide—including Cal Fire Captain Ryan Mitchell, who killed himself at the Pine Valley Bridge in San Diego’s East County earlier this month.
Jeff Dill, CEO and founder of the Firefighter Behavioral Health Alliance (www.ffbha.org) , is determined to save firefighters’ lives through special workshops designed by a firefighter, for a firefighter.
Photo: San Diego Sheriff via Twitter after Deputy Fischer visited KUSI with K-9 “Magic”
November 24, 2017 (San Diego) – San Diego County Sheriff’s Deputy Richard Fischer has been placed on administrative leave pending investigation of complaints filed by several women alleging sexual misconduct including sexual assaults.
Update: An earlier version of this article stated that only one of California's Congressional Republicans joined with Democrats in signing a letter to President Trump asking for disaster aid for the fire victims. The article has been updated to include a separate letter signed by Congressman Duncan Hunter and Darrell Issa, both San Diego Republicans, asking Trump for the disaster aid.
By Miriam Raftery
November 23, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – Just in time for Thanksgiving, President Donald Trump’s White House sent Congress a skimpy disaster relief funding request that includes not one penny for survivors of the worst wildfires in California history, those that ravaged the wine region and other areas recently. The measure provided only bare-bones funding for states that suffered hurricane damage.
November 23, 2017 (La Mesa) – A fire on Thanksgiving morning caused $250,000 in damage to a home and its contents in the 3800 of Carbo Court in La Mesa.
According to ECM news partner 10 News, Karla Fierro and her boyfriend helped her three children escape the fire, along with their dog. With help from a neighbor, they also evacuated a paralyzed man whom her boyfriend is caretaker for. The disabled man and his caretaker were treated at a hospital for smoke inhalation.
November 23, 2017 (San Diego) - Sheriff Bill Gore recalls sitting at work this summer, listening to Carl DeMaio on his KOGO radio talk show.
Even though the former San Diego City Council member was an early endorser of Gore for sheriff in 2010, DeMaio “really blasted me” over permits to carry a concealed weapon, Gore told a Republican women’s club this week.
November 22, 2017 (San Diego) – If you’re planning to travel out of the San Diego International Airport during the next year, you may want to avoid late night flights. The runway is being torn up nightly to repave it a section at a time, and so it will be closed each night from midnight to 5 a.m.
November 22, 2017 (San Diego's East County) - Let the shopping — and receipt-checking — begin!
Black Friday and the holiday season mean the shopping-est time of the year is back. The County wants to remind shoppers to double-check all receipts to protect themselves from being overcharged by faulty cash register price scanners.
November 22, 2017 (San Diego's East County) -- Elevated fire conditions are forecast for today, continuing on Thanksgiving. While conditions should cool over the weekend, fire danger returns Monday due to extremely hot, dry conditions and Santa Ana winds, the National Weather Service predicts.
Already this Thanksgiving week, many places in San Diego County have experienced record-breaking temperatures for the season. Highs reached into the 90s in El Cajon, Ramona, Escondido and other local communities.
November 21, 2017 (El Cajon) -- Some 300 members of El Cajon’s large Chaldean community gathered at Prescott Promenade in downtown El Cajon on Thursday afternoon to vent their frustrations that the U.S. government is not doing enough to protect ethnic Chaldean Christians who still live in war-torn Iraq and face new persecutions now, even after ISIS has been routed from their homeland.
The rally was sponsored by the Chaldean League of California, local Chaldean associations, and the Chaldean Catholic Diocese of St. Peter. Several speakers called for the Iraqi constitution to be amended to assure equality for Muslim and Christian Iraqis and asked for there to be a separation of church and state in Iraq.
According to a flyer distributed by the Chaldean League, since the defeat of ISIS, Iraqi Christians have started to return to their overrun towns and villages, yet are once again being forced to flee again when Iraqi and Kurdish forces clash.
November 20, 2017 (El Cajon) – Since the East County Perform Arts Center shut down in 2010, many East County residents have been frustrated with the slow pace of completing repairs and finding new management.
Finally, at last Tuesday’s El Cajon City Council hearing, residents heard the news they’ve long been waiting for. Mayor Bill Wells and City Manager Doug Williford announced that a preliminary five year management agreement for the theater has been reached with Live Nation, a Beverly Hills-based live-events company focused on producing worldwide concert and entertainment-show promotions.
Details of the final agreement are expected to be shared at the next meeting and approved by the City Council. The vote will mark the culmination of some one-and-a-half years of negotiation by Williford.
November 20, 2017 (Alpine) – Covert Canyon, a controversial firearms training facility long utilized by military and law enforcement as well as private gun enthusiasts, faces potential foreclosure.CBS 8 reports that a notice of default was filed against owner Marc Halcon on October 26th.If he does not pay $40,000 within 90 days, the property can be foreclosed on and sold at auction.
November 20, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – San Diego County Gun Owners (SDCGO), a political action committee promoting Second Amendment rights, has long opposed what it contends is an undisclosed internal policy on who can qualify for a concealed carry weapon (CCW) permit. SDCGO says that Sheriff Bill Gore routinely denies CCW permits to law-abiding, trained county residents who qualify under state law for a CCW.
November 19, 2017 (San Diego) – House Republicans rammed through passage of a sweeping tax reform measure without holding a single hearing on the 400-page bill and without allowing any input from Democrats. The measure, hailed as the first major legislative victory for President Donald Trump, was opposed by San Diego’s three Democratic representatives as well as by Republican Darrell Issa, but was supported by Republican Duncan Hunter.
November 20, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – Your turkey in the oven won’t be the only thing warming up this Thanksgiving. The National Weather Service predicts warm, dry weather through the holiday weekend—with record temperatures likely Wednesday and Thursday, Thanksgiving Day.
Photo: Bobcat with necrotic mange in Deerhorn Valley, 2012
November 18, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – Deadly outbreaks of mange in wildlife across California has been linked to second-generation anti-coagulant poisons meant to kill rats and other rodents. Locally, numerous cases of mange have been reported among coyotes in Lakeside as recently as this month. In Deerhorn Valley, the Antler documented bobcats dying of necrotic mange from second generation rodenticides in 2012.
“We can create at least 6,000 jobs here.” – Pete Beauregard
By Miriam Raftery
November 17, 2017 (Ramona) – Out of the ashes of the 2007 firestorm in Ramona, Casa Aguilar arose.The home of Pete Beauregard and his wife, Amy McQuillan, just won the U.S. Department of Energy’s 2017 Innovation Award for zero net energy use. It’s also built to withstand wildfires.
On October 24, Beauregard, a rancher, veteran, ex-rodeo bullrider and candidate for Congress in the 50th Congressional district took the bull by the horns and convened a think tank meeting at his visionary home.The event brought together top green industry leaders to brainstorm ideas for bringing green manufacturing and building jobs to East County.
Update: Hear our interview with Dash McTavish from Food Not Bombs, a group planning to feed the homeless Nov. 25 in defiance of El Cajon's ban. Click the audio link to hear the interviewed originally aired on KNSJ.
By Miriam Raftery
November 12, 2017 (El Cajon) – Protest rallies on November 19th and 25th are being organized to oppose the El Cajon City Council’s unanimous decision to outlaw feeding the homeless and other city-owned properties, after previously banning camping in parks, sleeping on sidewalks and panhandling. An online petition also calls on Mayor Bill Wells and the City Council to overturn the ban.
November 15, 2017 (San Diego's East County) - The County’s Health and Human Services Agency is warning anyone who uses an electronic benefit transfer (EBT) card to access benefits to be aware of a text messaging scam.
November 13, 2017 (Washington D.C.) — Alex Azar, a long-time pharmaceutical industry executive, has been appointed by President Donald Trump to serve as Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.
November 17, 2017 (Barrett Junction) – A motorcyclist was killed after being ejected from his vehicle following a collision with a Jeep Wrangler at Barrett Junction early this morning, then run over by another vehicle that fled the scene.
November 16, 2017 (El Cajon) - A proposal that would reduce a girl’s marriageable age to puberty, right to decline sex to a husband, eliminate inheritance rights and child custody decisions for women passed its first reading in the Iraqi Parliament on October 30. The bill still requires a second reading to become law.
November 17, 2017 (San Diego) — Caltrans crews will close all southbound lanes of Interstate 5 (I-5) from the Interstate 805 merge to La Jolla Village Drive Sunday and Monday night from 9:30 p.m. to 5 a.m. the following morning for bridge work.
All motorists will be detoured to southbound I-805, to westbound State Route 52, to the SR-52/I-5 interchange.
Crews will be working on two separate bridge projects. One is the construction of the Gilman Drive Bridge project, the other is bridge maintenance at the I-5 Sorrento Valley Viaduct, this pavement work will take place on the main lanes of I-5.
November 15, 2017 (Washington D.C.) – If your child’s holiday wish list includes a hoverboard, you may want to tell Santa to think twice before delivering one. The Consumer Product Safety Commission issued seven more hoverboard recalls Tuesday due to fire and explosion hazards. The Commission has previously recalled many other hoverboard models.
Moratorium may block planned movement of nuclear spent fuel into thin canisters at San Onofre
Source: Citizens’ Oversight
November 15, 2017 (San Diego) -- Ray Lutz, Founder of Citizens Oversight, announced last week that the "HELLMSS-MELO Proposal" will be submitted as a component of a petition to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), calling for a national moratorium on the use of thin, single-wall nuclear waste canisters.
November 18, 2017 (Rancho San Diego)--San Miguel Fire District along with Heartland Fire Rescue and Santee Fire Department will be conducting fire and rescue training this weekend at Vahalla High School, located at 1725 Hillsdale Road in the Rancho San Diego area of unincorporated El Cajon.
The fire rescue drill will be Saturday November 18 and Sunday November 19 from 9am to 3pm. Smoke machines will be used during training - neighbors might see smoke coming from the school during these training events.