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SPRING VALLEY COMMUNITY PLANNING GROUP VACANCY NOTICE

 

April 23, 2014 (Spring Valley) - This is to announce a vacancy has occurred on the Spring Valley Community Planning Group, due to the resignation of Richard Preuss, Seat 7. The BOARD OF SUPERVISORS makes this appointment. Please refer to the Roster of Boards, Commissions and Committees on our web site at http://www.sdcounty.ca.gov/cob/.

JUDICIAL CANDIDATE FACES ETHICS CONTROVERSIES

 

Court stipulation requires changes in ballot statement claims; fundraiser for Issa and large donations raise further ethical questions

By Miriam Raftery

April 22, 2014 (San Diego) –Three candidates are vying for Superior Court Judge, seat 25, on the June ballot. The top two will face off in November.  The official ballot designations list them as Deputy Attorney General Brad Weinreb, attorney/fraud examiner Michele Hagan, and attorney/court volunteer Ken Gosselin.

Controversy has arisen surrounding Gosselin,  after Weinreb filed a legal challenge alleging exaggerated experience and education claims on Gosselin’s ballot statement. 

In addiiton, an ECM investigation has found that a fundraiser that Gosselin held at his home for a non-judicial candidate, Congressman Darrell Issa, may have violated California's Judicial Canon of Ethics, which prohibit judicial candidates from fundraising for or endorsing non-judicial candidates. A second Congressional candidate has also stated that Gosselin endorsed him.  Other violations may have occurred due to hefty campaign contributions made by Gosselin to the San Diego County Republican Party, which later endorsed him, and to the Lincoln Club.

MAYOR MADRID LAUNCHES REELECTION CAMPAIGN, RUNS ON RECORD OF SUCCESS

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 22, 2014 (La Mesa) – La Mesa Mayor Art Madrid held a press conference yesterday, flanked by his supporters,  to formally launch his reelection campaign.  “I pledge that the city will continue to be properly managed and that I will vigorously protect its character and heritage,” said Mayor Madrid.  He cited successes under his leadership during his 24-year tenure as Mayor and his 10 years previously on the City Council, as well as a decade serving on civic boards and commissions.

“In 1990 when I was elected Mayor, my commitment then was to help make La Mesa the best community in the region in which to live and raise a family,” said the Mayor, adding that his leadership, collaborative governance and management skills have helped fulfill that dream.  “I’ve led the transformation of la Mesa into a vibrant, proactive and inclusive community that continues to attract new families and businesses to our city.”

BUDGET BATTLES IN CONGRESS

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 22, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - Three competing budgets have been proposed in Congress-one by House Republicans, another by President Obama, and a third by the House Congressional Progressive Caucus.

All aim to balance the budget over time. The Republican plan focuses on cuts to social services and tax breaks to businesses and wealthier Americans in line with the trickle-down economic theory. The President and progressive budgets focus on raising revenues to closing tax loopholes for corporations and the rich, providing more help to middle class and low-income taxpayers under a rising tide floats all boats strategy.

But how do these three budgets stack up compared to what polls show most Americans want Congress to do?

ASSEMBLY MEMBER WEBER MEETS CONSTITUENTS IN LEMON GROVE

 

By Nadin Abbott; photos Tom Abbott

April 20, 2014 (Lemon Grove)--Assembly Member Shirley Weber (79th-D) held a coffee day with constituents at the Lemon Grove Library on April 19. Weber explained that the issues that face the district are as diverse as the area she represents, adding that the issues of Lemon Grove are ever present in her mind.

TSIMBOUKAKIS VIES FOR SENATOR ANDERSON’S SEAT: TAKES STAND AGAINST INDUSTRIAL-SCALE ENERGY PROJECTS IN EAST COUNTY

 

 

By Jessica Richmond

Listen to our radio interview with Fotios “Frank” Tsimboukakis here:  http://kiwi6.com/file/t5e89mc5cl

April 12, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) - The race for California’s 38th State Senate district seat has been heating up since the arrival of Fotios “Frank” Tsimboukakis.  He has made it a point to challenge incumbent Joel Anderson on many key issues—including taking a stand against environmentally harmful energy projects in East County. Tsimboukakis has testified in public hearings against industrial solar and wind projects, as well as the Quail Brush gas-fired power plant, while Anderson has been largely silent on these controversial plans, critics have pointed out.

Tsimboukakis has also proposed plans to make college tuition free, cut wasteful spending, and convene public hearings on funding firefighting, with an eye toward possibly repealing or amending state fire fees.  He has also pledged to hold regular town hall meetings in the district to hear from voters, faulting Anderson for not hosting town halls for constituents to share their views.

HUNTER TARGETED BY BILL MAHER'S "FLIP A DISTRICT"

 

 

 

 

 

 

East County News Service

April 16, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) –HBO’s Real Time Host, Bill Maher, has launched a “flip a district” series in which voters are invited to submit videos showing why their representative should be ousted.  His latest target? Congressman Duncan D. Hunter,. Hunter was asked about his opposition to a measure aimed at protecting women against pay discrimination.   When Hunter responded that “there really isn’t gender discrimination,” the audience responded by booing him.  View video:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uDGjia4VgCA&feature=youtu.be

STORM THE HILL: VETERANS CALL FOR ACTION TO STOP SUICIDES

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 16, 2014 (Washington D.C.) –Veterans from across America converged on Capitol Hill on March 31, meeting with members of Congress and the administration. They sought help to prevent suicides among returning veterans.

LA MESA COUNCIL VOTES AGAINST CELL PHONE BAN FOR COUNCIL MEMBERS DURING MEETINGS

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 14, 2014 (La Mesa) - La Mesa’s City Council voted down a proposal by Mayor Art Madrid that would have banned Councilmembers from using their cell phones during public meetings, including closed sessions.  Mayor Madrid argued that since members of the public in the audience are asked to silence their cell phones, council members should, too.

ASSEMBLYWOMAN WEBER HOSTS COMMUNITY CHAT IN LEMON GROVE APRIL 19

 

April 13, 2014 (Lemon Grove) - Assemblymember Shirley Weber will host a Community Coffee Chat on Saturday, April 19th. Attendees will have the opportunity to be updated on what’s happening in Sacramento and to share their concerns on statewide issues. This event is a free and open to the public.

REP. HUNTER ADDRESSES POLONIA UNITED

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 12, 2014 (La Mesa)—Polonia United, an organization of Polish Americans in San Diego, hosted a meet and greet with Congressman Duncan D. Hunter (R-Alpine) at a private home in La Mesa.

“I am proud to have fought for people who want to be free,” said Hunter, a veteran who has served multiple tours of duty in Afghanistan.Hunter spoke of the need for the U.S. to support its allies that value freedom including nations in Europe such as Poland, while guarding against those who seek to cause harm.

TERM LIMITS TACTICS TAKE NEGATIVE TURN IN LA MESA

 

Hear our radio interview with term limits advocates Craig Maxwell and La Mesa Vice Mayor Kristine Alessio: http://kiwi6.com/file/257ktyze5y

By Miriam Raftery

April 12, 2014 (La Mesa) – An ad sent in a mailer to La Mesa residents by the La Mesa Term Limits Committee is sparking controversy.  The ad, topped by a no career politicians message, has two photos of convicted former San Diego Mayor Bob Filner – one in 1979, labeled “idealistic, committed, zeal of a new recruit” and the second in 2013 labeled “corrupt, drunk on power, self serving.”  The ad then admonishes voters to “keep all our reps honest with term limits.”

“How could the innuendo in this not be profoundly offensive to the current La Mesa City Council?” asks Anthony McIvor, a La Mesa resident, who calls the mailer a “regrettable smear” piece.

ASSEMBLYWOMAN GONZALEZ TO CHAIR NEW SELECT COMMITTEE ON WOMEN IN THE WORKPLACE

 

April 8, 2014 (San Diego)--California State Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez today announced the creation of the Assembly Select Committee on Women in the Workplace and named Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) as its chair.

A STATE FROG? LEGISLATOR "JUMPS TO CONCLUSIONS"

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 7, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - Mark Twain’s classic short story, The Celebrating Jumping Frog of Calaveras County, told the tale of a gambler in the Gold Rush era who won a bet by loading up a competitor’s frog with buckshot.  The star of that tale, California’s red legged frog, was made famous—and the town of Angel’s Camp re-creates the fictional even each year.

LA MESA RACES HEAT UP : ARAPOSTATHIS TO CHALLENGE MADRID FOR MAYOR

 

Ewin to step down, leaving two vacancies to fill on Council

By Miriam Raftery

April 6, 2014 (La Mesa) – The filing deadline isn’t until  August for La Mesa’s city council and mayoral races.  But at least two candidates have already declared their intention to vie for Mayor.  Art Madrid announced on East County Magazine’s radio show that he is seeking reelection. Listen to interview here.  Councilman Mark Arpostathis held a press conference to announce he plans to challenge Mayor Madrid. View video of his announcement here.

Whether Aropstathis wins or loses the mayoral challenge, it will open up his seat on the city council.  In addition, long-serving Councilman Ernie Ewin announced this week that he will not seek reelection and has further indicated he will not run for mayor, San Diego Rostra reported. That leaves two open seats on La Mesa’s  council –and a potential shift in the balance of power and priorities for La Mesa.

MEET THE CANDIDATES RECEPTION APRIL 29

 

April 6, 2014 (San Diego) – The League of Women Voters of San Diego will hold a Meet the Candidates Reception on April 29, 2014 from 6 to 8 pm.  The event will be held at the Hall of Champions in Balboa Park.  There is no charge to attend.

SUPREME COURT STRIKES DOWN CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTION LIMITS

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 2, 2014 (Washington D.C.) – The U.S. Supreme Court has struck down limits on how much money an individual can donate overall during elections.  By a 5-4 vote in the case, McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission, the court’s majority tossed out restrictions on how much a person can donate to political parties, political action committees or PACs, and candidates in any two-year period, though limits on how much one can give to any single candidate remain in place.

Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the opinion, finding that the limits intruded on what he called a “citizen’s ability to exercise the most fundamental First Amendment activities.”

But Common Cause, a nonpartisan organization dedicated to transparency in government and helping ordinary Americans have their voices heard, denounced the high court’s ruling as a “decision against democracy.”

YEE WITHDRAWS FROM SECRETARY OF STATE RACE AMID CORRUPTION CHARGES

 

Update: Anderson casts lone vote against suspension of Yee, calls for expulsion from Senate instead.

By Miriam Raftery

March 30, 2014 (Sacramento) – Capitol Hill is reeling over charges against Senator Leland Yee alleging corruption and conspiracy to smuggle firearms. The FBI evidence  reportedly includes Yee caught on tape setting up a meeting with an arms broker for an undercover agent,  as well as ties to organized crime leader  Raymond Chow, better known as Shrimp Boy.

EL CAJON’S NEW COUNCILWOMAN SPEAKS TO LOCAL REALTORS

 

By Janis Russell

March 27, 2014 (El Cajon)—“I think it’s being in the right place at the right time,” El Cajon Councilwoman Star Bales said of her appointment to the City Council.  Bales admits she was shocked to be chosen by Councilmembers, adding that she is “in the process of learning while working with them.” 

Bales made the remarks at the Pacific Southwest Association of Realtors (PSAR), Government Affairs Committee meeting on March 19.

BILL WOULD GIVE CONSUMERS CONTROL OF THEIR VEHICLES' DATA

 

By Lori Abbott, California News Service

March 19, 2014 (Sacramento). - Many newer vehicles come with fancy GPS and on-board computers that collect data about where a person drives, how fast, and any accidents they may have had. Legislation introduced at the state Capitol on Tuesday would give vehicle owners more access to that data, which is currently controlled mostly by automakers.

REPS. SUSAN DAVIS, SCOTT PETERS, MEDICAL RESEARCH COMMUNITY CALL FOR RESEARCH FUNDING FOR SAN DIEGO

 

March 18, 2014 (San Diego)-- Reps. Susan Davis and Scott Peters, along with members of San Diego’s medical research community have joined together to call on Congress to increase federal funding to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which funds critical medical research.

CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE JAMES KIMBER ENDORSED BY CALIFORNIA DEMOCRATIC PARTY AT CONVENTION

 

March 12, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)--James H. Kimber, Democratic candidate for California’s 50th Congressional District office currently held by Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine), received the official endorsement of the California Democratic Party at the state convention in Los Angeles this past weekend.

REP. SUSAN DAVIS' BILL WOULD HELP BORROWERS PAY DOWN STUDENT LOANS FASTER

 

March 13, 2014 (Washington D.C.)-- Being able to pay extra on a student loan can provide peace of mind that a financial burden is shrinking faster than usual. That’s until you learn that the extra money has been applied to future payments and interest, reducing your ability to pay down the principal.  Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) introduced legislation today that would require extra payments on student loans go toward the principal of the loan first.

GRAND JURY: SAN DIEGO SHOULD AMEND CHARTER, MAKE IT EASIER TO REMOVE PUBLIC OFFICIALS

 

By Miriam Raftery

March 13, 2014 (San Diego) – Mayor Bob Filner was the latest of several San Diego mayors who resigned under public pressure. Filner pled guilty to a felony count and two misdemeanors following a long string of complaints by women alleging sexual harassment. But there was no legal requirement for a disgraced or disabled mayor to leave office, under San Diego’s Charter. In fact, the charter allows removal of a Mayor or other city official only through death, resignation or recall.

 Now the San Diego County Grand Jury wants to see that changed. Today, the Grand Jury issued a report recommending that the City Council identify additional reasons for removing a public official and place a proposal to amend the City  Charter on the ballot for voters to decide in a future election.

ASSEMBLYWOMAN WEBER TALKS WITH ECM ON EDUCATION ISSUES AND MORE

 

 

By Cary Hyatt

March 5, 2014 (San Diego East County)--On February 26, ECM Editor Miriam Raftery interviewed Assembly Member Shirley Weber  PhD, who represents the 79th district including the cities of La Mesa, Lemon Grove, San Diego. Chula Vista and National City.

Assemblywoman Weber’s legislation has been mostly focused on early childhood education, but she also spoke about her efforts to improve higher education in our region, prevent harassment of minority students, and restore cuts made to health and human services.

 You can hear the full radio interview on KNSJ 89.1 FM at this link, or scroll down for highlights.

DEMOCRATS LOSE SUPER-MAJORITY IN STATE CAPITOL

 

March 3, 2014 (Sacramento)—Democrats have lost a supermajority in the state Senate, which means they can no longer pass tax measures or constitutional amendments without at least one Republican vote. That could mean a return to gridlock in Sacramento.

MIKE LUMPKIN AND FORMER OPPONENT DUNCAN HUNTER FIND COMMON GROUND SEEKING INFO ON MISSING SERVICE MEMBERS

 

By Nadin Abbott

March 1, 2014 (San Diego)--Mike Lumpkin,  a Democrat who once ran against Republican Congressman Duncan Hunter for the district representing much of East County and San Diego, has been named Acting Undersecretary of Defense for Policy.  

Now Congressman Hunter and his former appointment have found some common ground.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT REPORT

 

February 24, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - On Tuesday, County Supervisors will consider acquiring land for a new Sheriff substation in Lakeside. That’s welcome news for Lakeside residents who complained of slow response times during a recent public meeting.

SIX STATES? BALLOT INITIATIVE EFFORT SEEKS TO SPLIT CALIFORNIA

 

 

By Nadin Abbott

February 20, 2014 (San Diego) Tim Draper is a venture capitalist living in what would become the new state of Silicon Valley under his proposal to split the state of California into six states.

So how would San Diego's region fare under such a plan--and just how costly might it be?

GONZALEZ'S VOTE ACT PROPOSES MAIL-ONLY SPECIAL ELECTIONS

 

Author says AB 1873 would increase participation, save taxpayer money in traditionally low-turnout contests

February 22, 2014 (San Diego)-- California State Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) introduced the VOTE Act last week in an effort to boost voter participation and curb the taxpayer costs of special elections.

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