December 20, 2016 (San Francisco) — California’s Supreme Court has temporarily blocked implementation of Proposition 66, a measure approved by voters in November that would speed up death penalty cases. The high court issued the stay to allow time to hear arguments in a lawsuit filed by opponents of the measure.
December 19, 2016 (Sacramento) -- Scientists have voiced alarm that the Trump administration might discontinue scientific research into climate science or even destroy decades of data amassed by the government. But now, scientists and California’s Governor Jerry Brown are pledging a fight to assure that climate science facts don’t disappear into a black hole.
December 17, 2016 (San Diego) – During yesterday’s stormy weather, 546 collisions were reported from midnight to 8 p.m. on freeways and streets in unincorporated areas of San Diego County, according to the California Highway Patrol.
December 16, 2016 (Descanso) — This morning, the body of a 23-year-old woman was found near a Lexus vehicle that had plummeted off I-8 east of State Route 79 in Descanso. The woman had been ejected from the vehicle and died of her injuries at the scene.
December 16, 2016 (La Mesa) -- Join us for East County Magazine's annual "Feasting and Merrymaking" holiday party this Sunday, December 18 from 3-7 p.m. at our editor's home on Mt. Helix! Our elves have been busy preparing a fabulous feast, plus we'll have live music provided by singer/guitarist Paul Nichols and pianist Andrea Ladmer, wines from San Pasqual Winery and a wealth of prizes, holiday games and surprises!
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Next up: Alpine General Plan amendments to be considered in 2017
December 16, 2016 (San Diego’s East County)—By a 4 to 1 vote with Supervisor Dave Roberts opposed, San Diego Supervisors on Wednesday voted to approve a Forest Conservation Initiative Lands General Plan Amendment, along with community plan amendments, rezoning and certification of a supplemental environmental review. The action paves the way for development of parcels in the Alpine and Descanso areas that were formerly protected under the Forest Conservation Initiative passed by voters, but that has since expired due to a sunset provision in 2010.
Travis Lyon, chair of the Alpine Community Planning Group, reports that the Supervisors “took all the recommendations ACPG made at the last meeting.”
Jack Shu, president of the Cleveland National Forest Foundation, said after the hearing, “The bottom line is that the County has moved to do away with what the voters – two thirds of them—wanted in 1993 to protect our local Forest."
December 16, 2016 (El Cajon) – El Cajon Police Officers and paramedics responded to the intersection of East Main and Ballard last night at 5:40 p.m. on a call reporting that a pedestrian that had been struck by a vehicle. Upon arrival, paramedics were unable to revive the pedestrian, a man in his 40s, who was later pronounced deceased at the scene. His name is being withheld pending notification of the family.
By Tracy DeFore, County of San Diego Communications Office
December 15, 2016 (San Diego) - With heavy rains expected, the County Department of Public Works is once again offering free sand and bags to residents in the unincorporated areas to help protect homes, neighborhoods and streets from flooding and erosion.
December 14, 2016 (San Diego) — San Diego Supervisors voted 4-1 to raise their pay 12.5%, or $19,000, over the next nine months, with no public discussion. The item will come up for a second reading on January 10th and if passed, will take effect March 17th.
December 13, 2016 (San Diego) — California Highway Patrol seeks public help to identify a pedestrian struck at 11:17 p.m. Saturday night while walking in lanes of Interstate northbound, south of Friars Road. The victim suffered major head and chest trauma after being struck by a maroon Subaru station wagon.
December 13, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) – A potentially potent storm will swing across Southern California late this week, which could bring heavy rain at high elevations, and gusty southwesterly winds in mountains, valleys, deserts and coastal areas. Dangerous conditions for small craft along coastal waters are also expected.
December 12, 2016 (San Diego) – Some immigration lawyers are warning “dreamers,” children brought to the U.S. by undocumented immigrant parents, not to travel overseas on or after January 20th.
That’s the date that Donald Trump is slated to be inaugurated as President. Trump said during the campaign that he would rescind executive orders by President Obama that provided protection from deportation to young immigrants under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which also gave them rights to work and travel for humanitarian, educational or employment purposes. He called for the deportation of all undocumented immigrants.
December 12, 2016 (Spring Valley) — A 24-year-old man died Monday night when the Corvette he was driving at a high speed struck an Oldsmobile on Highway 94 in Spring Valley, then plunged over the side of the freeway.
The Corvette fell 70 feet onto Spring Street below, according to California Highway Patrol Officer Kevin Pearlstein.
December 11, 2016 (Ocotillo) – State Senator Ben Hueso (D-40th district) wants to know why a massive wind turbine collapsed on November 21st in Ocotillo on public land—and what will be done to prevent future such disasters.
In a letter to Beth O’Brien, Pattern Energy’s manager of external affairs, Senator Hueso notes that this is the third serious incident that has occurred at the Ocotillo Wind Energy Facilitiy since it opened approximately four years ago. Prior problems include a wind turbine that burst into flames and another that hurled a multi-ton blade onto a public trail.
He indicated that residents have contacted him with concerns and asked him to look into the matter. East County Magazine also contacted the Senator to ask what steps will be taken to protect public safety.
Hear our interview with Dilkhwaz Ahmed by clicking this oramge play button.
East County News Service
December 10,2016 (El Cajon)—In an interview on KNSJ Radio, Dilkhwaz Ahmed with License to Freedom offered an urgent plea for help. Hundreds of Syrian families have just arrived in East County – with 50 to 60 more flooding in each day.
The refugees fled a humanitarian crisis in their war-torn homeland, relocated here by the U.S. government at the request of the United Nations. Other countries are also offering shelter to refugees. But many who came here have large families, so their modest aid funds are scarcely enough to cover rent and food. They need help to overcome trauma and learn how to build new lives in America. But there are not nearly enough people or resources to fill the desperate need.
December 9, 2016 (Ocotillo) - Border Patrol agents rescued a 39-year-old illegal immigrant, whose identity is being withheld, in the mountains west of Ocotillo on Friday around 12:40 p.m., NBC 7 reports.
California Highway Patrol agents were able to find the man, a native of El Salvador, after a report filed that he was lost about half a mile north of the Mexican border.
December 9, 2016 (San Diego) - The connector ramps from westbound I-8 to north and southbound 125 will be closed starting Saturday night at 10:00 p.m., per Caltrans. They will reopen at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday morning.
December 7, 2016 (La Mesa) — Control of the Helix Water District board has shifted from a majority that voted to sharply increase water rates to a new majority that has pledged to resist new price hikes and if possible, roll back part of a five-year rate hike approved by outgoing board members.
December 8, 2016 (San Diego) -- Superior Court Judge Katherine Bacal today denied State Farm's emergency request to stay a November order issued by Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones. Jones’ order directed State Farm to reduce homeowner and renter rates by seven percent and issue refunds totaling over $100 million to State Farm's policyholders.
December 8, 2016 (San Diego) – A Santee chiropractor’s office has alerted us to a scam in which a caller posing as a San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) representatives tells the business that a utility bill is past due and tricks them into paying money. The scammers even set up a call-back phone number that they answer as SDG&E, but it’s a hoax, the company warns.
December 6, 2016 (Campo) - A celebration of life is planned for longtime Campo resident Carol Yates on Dec. 9. Mrs. Yates died in her home on November 13, 2016, at the age of 85.
She is remembered as an active auxiliary member of the John Finn VFW Post 2080 and of the Mountain Empire Homemakers Club. She worked for many years at the historic Dogpatch bar -- which burned down in 1987 -- in the Canyon City neighborhood of Campo. In recent years, she was a well-known face at senior lunches at the community center in Campo.
December 6, 2016 (Poway) — The driver of a black Ford Mustang made an illegal U-turn on State Route 67 near Iron Mountain Road and was struck by two northbound vehicles, a Ford Fusion and a Toyota Highlander, yesterday at 5:24 p.m. , California Highway Patrol reports. The Mustang caught fire and a passerby pulled the driver from the flaming vehicle.
December 5, 2016 (Ramona) – A dedication ceremony was held in Ramona last week for a new public trail along San Vicente Road.
A two-mile section of the San Vicente road from Warnock Drive through Wildcat Canyon to the entrance of San Diego Country Estates has been widened and straightened, also adding a 10-foot-wide multi-use trail alongside the roadway.
December 1, 2016 (El Cajon) — A notice from the city of El Cajon today announces that a Draft Environmental Impact Report on the city’s proposed Housing Element Rezoning Program is available for public review and written comment starting December 5th through January 19th.
A community open house is set for January 5th from 6 p.m.to 7 p.m. at the El Cajon Branch Library (201 East Douglas) meeting room to discuss the project, the California Environmental Quality Act public review process and the content and findings of the draft EIR.
Fleeing violence in Syria, some fear homelessness in U.S.
Hear our radio interviews with Syrian refugees and those seeking to help them in El Cajon by clicking the audio link.
By Rachel Williams
December 1, 2016 (El Cajon) -- Within the Villas of Embasadora, a motel in El Cajon, Syrian refugees have converted their rooms into makeshift homes where it’s cheaper for families of eight, or eleven to survive, than in San Diego’s public housing where costs have risen sharply.
December 1, 2016 (El Cajon) –El Cajon’s City Council will hold a public hearing on Tuesday, December 13 at 3 p.m. in Council Chambers (200 Civic Center Way) to consider extending an ordinance banning outdoor marijuana growing for the next year.
Following passage of Proposition 64, the statewide ballot measure legalizing recreational marijuana including growing up to six plants per household, El Cajon’s City Council on Nov. 15 passed an emergency ordinance banning outdoor growing of marijuana plants until Dec. 30 in all zones within the city. The hearing on Dec. 31 would be on a proposal to extend that ban until Nov.14, 2017.
By Tracy DeFore, County of San Diego Communications Office
December 1, 2016 (San Diego's East County) - ‘Tis the season to dig out those boxes of decorations, blow the dust off of them and start hanging all those lights, stockings, tinsel, garland and everything else that puts you in the holiday spirit. Just make sure your pets don’t put a “bah, humbug” into your plans this time of year.
November 30, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) – A potentially strong Santa Ana weather pattern will develop Thursday evening, bringing strong Santa Ana winds Thursday night through Saturday. Sustained winds of 20-30 miles per hour and gusts over 65 mph are possible in the windiest locations, including Highway 8 in San Diego County from Alpine to the Imperial County border.
November 29, 2016 (Ramona)—The motorcyclist killed Friday morning on Highway 79 in Santa Ysabel in a collision with a Prius has been identified as Victor Earhart, 70, a prominent skateboarder who inspired fans of all ages.
Sector 9, a skateboard company where Earhart worked and performed as a team writer, posted a tribute titled “Legends Never Die” that praised him as “a great ambassador for skateboarding and a legend to many. He was always down to ride skateboards rain or shine, dirt or asphalt. He was very loved by all and will be sorely missed in the skateboard community.”