Santee

WELCOME, SANTEE & LAKESIDE RESIDENTS!


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FIND PUPPY LOVE AND A DOGGONE GOOD TIME AT FIDO FEST: FEB. 25 IN SANTEE

By Miriam Raftery

January 29, 2023 (Santee) – Fido Fest, the largest dog festival in East County, will be presented by the city of Santee on Saturday, February 25 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dog adoptions, giveaways, a dog agility course, costume contest and much more will be available at the free event held at Town Center Community Park East (550 Park Center Drive).


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MISSING SANTEE TEEN

Source:  San Diego County Sheriff

January 20, 2023 (Santee) - The San Diego County Sheriff's Department wants the public's help in locating a missing girl in the East County.

16-year-old Veronica Moreno was last seen at her home in Santee on January 6. She ran away after an argument with her parents, according to the Sheriff’s Department.


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SLAMMED IN SANTEE, TRANSGENDER WOMAN REVEALS HERSELF AFTER HARSH YMCA RALLY

 

By Ken Stone and Chris Stone, Times of San Diego, a member of the San Diego Online News Association 

January 19, 2023 (Santee) - Speaker after speaker in front of the Santee YMCA invoked right and wrong, “what is true and what is good,” as they denounced policies that allowed “grown men to parade around naked in women’s showers and locker rooms.”


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TENSIONS ESCALATE AT SANTEE YMCA

YMCA closes early due to rallies today, apologizes to teen; Santee School district pledges review of YMCA policies before approving future field trips for students

By Miriam Raftery

Photo by Shiloh Ireland

January 18, 2023 (Santee) The Santee YMCA branch announced it will close early today to protect staff members after an announced rally and counter-protest over a teen girl’s complaint of a transgender person she described as a “naked man.”

The San Diego Sheriff’s Department issued a statement indicated it is aware of the planned protest, adding, “We support the public's right to free speech and assembly. We encourage the peaceful gathering of people. We respect your right to be heard.”

The statement added, “The Sheriff's Department does not condone any acts of violence or intolerance in our communities. We are a county that is welcoming of people from all backgrounds. Our job is to enforce the law. As long as people express themselves in a peaceful and lawful manner, we do not have any lawful authority to intervene.”


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POPEYES COMING TO SANTEE THIS SUMMER

By Mike Allen

January 10, 2023 (Santee) – Here’s good news for those who’ve been traveling to Tierrasanta or beyond to get their Popeyes fix. The Louisiana chicken chain will open an outlet here this summer.


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PHOTOS OF THE WEEK: GREAT BLUE HERON

East County News Service

January 7, 2023 (Santee) – Scott Lagace started the New Year off right with a stroll around Santee Lakes on January 1, where he captured a Great Blue Heron in flight, shown in these beautiful images.

 


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PADRE DAM APPOINTS DIRECTOR AFTER NO CANDIDATE FILED TO RUN

By Mike Allen

Photo:   Rocky Qualin (beard) and Brian Fordyce, new directors of Padre Dam Water District

December 12, 2022 (Santee) -- Brian Fordyce was appointed this month as the newest director for the Padre Dam Municipal Water District board of directors, taking over a seat for District 1 formerly held by Doug Wilson.


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WEST HILLS HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT UNDER EVALUATION AFTER THREATS

East County News Service

December 7, 2022 (Santee) - A 14-year-old boy is being evaluated at a hospital as a safety precaution after threatening to hurt students and staff at West Hills High School. 


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SHERIFF RELEASES SKETCH OF SUSPECT WANTED FOR RAMMING WITH PICKUP IN SANTEE IN ATTEMPTED ROBBERY

East County News Service

December 4, 2022 (Santee) - Take a good look at this sketch. This man is wanted in connection with an attempted robbery in Santee on Friday, November 25 and for striking two women with the dark green pickup truck he was driving.


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HO-HO-HOLIDAY LIGHTING CELEBRATION IN SANTEE NOV. 18

Source: City of Santee

November 14, 2022 (Santee) -- Have a holly-jolly good time at the City of Santee’s annual Holiday Lighting Celebration on Friday, November 18 from 5:30-8:30 p.m. at Santee Trolley Square, located at 9884 Mission Gorge Road.


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SEX TRAFFICKING STING RESULTS IN 30 ARRESTS, INCLUDING IN SANTEE

East County News Service

Photo: CC via Bing

November 12, 2022 (San Diego) -- As part of a joint investigation through the San Diego Human Trafficking Task Force (SDHTTF), California Attorney General Rob Bonta on Nov. 7 announced results of “Operation Century Week.” As a result of the four-day operation, 30 individuals were arrested for alleged solicitation in San Diego, Santee, National City, Encinitas and elsewhere.


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INCUMBENTS WINNING IN EAST COUNTY CITY RACES

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells and La Mesa Mayor Mark Araposthis are winning their reelection bids

November 8, 2022 (San Diego’s East County) – Early results after polls closed tonight indicate incumbents heading for reelection in La Mesa, El Cajon and Lemon Grove.

The power of incumbency proved stronger than partisan politics. Though city races are nonpartisan, political parties endorsed candidates and expended resources walking precincts to campaign for their parties' choices. But incumbents in both parties hold solid leads, though Democrats appear likely to pick up a seat in both the La Mesa and Lemon Grove Council races, following the retirement of Republican incumbents.

El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells, a Republican, has a solid 71.25% of the votes tallied so far; his opponent, realtor Arnie Levine, a Democrat, has 28.75%. The Mayor ran on a track record of boosting revenues through bringing in new hotels and reopening the performing arts center, while Levine criticized Mayor Wells’ defiance of public health business shutdown mandates duringthe pandemic. El Cajon Councilman Gary Kendrick ran unopposed, drawing 100% of the votes.  But El Cajon’s Measure P which the Mayor supports, to increase the city sales tax to a penny per dollar, is losing 58% to 42%.


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WHO WAS THE HOMELESS MAN WHO DIED OCT. 30 IN SANTEE RIVERBED?

Story and photos by Shiloh Ireland

Photo:  Steve White's body location on trail

 

November 6, 2022 (Santee) – Authorities have not yet identified the man found  last week on a trail near a homeless camp in Santee. But two men who live at the camp told East County Magazine that the deceased was Steve White, who was homeless.


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LIGHTS AT THE LAKES HOLIDAY LIGHT SHOW STARTS NOV. 25 IN SANTEE

East County News Service

November 1, 2022 (Santee) – The first annual Lights at the Lakes holiday show will run on select dates November 25 – December 24, from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve.


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MAN FOUND DEAD NEAR SANTEE TRANSIENT CAMP WITH SIGNS OF TRAUMA

By Miriam Raftery

October 31, 2022 (Santee) – A 66-year-old man was found dead early yesterday morning on a dirt trail near a transient camp in Santee.  According to the Sheriff’s Homicide Unit, the deceased  man is a “known transient” who “appears to have some trauma to his upper torso, but it is unknown if the trauma played a factor in his death.”


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SANTEE FINANCE DIRECTOR RETIRES

By Mike Allen

October 28, 2022 (Santee) - Tim McDermott has seen the good times and the bad times overseeing budgets for the city of Santee over the past 21 years, and now he’s presumably enjoying the best of times in retirement.


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ECM FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS: VAQUEROS RIDE COMEBACK HORSE OVER WEST HILLS TO END SEASON PERFECT IN GROSSMONT LEAGUE

Story and photos by Liz Alper
 
October 28, 2022 (Lakeside) - For the last game of the regular season, ECM Sports headed out to Lakeside to take in El Capitan football for the first time this season as they took on West Hills.  The Vaqueros have had a great season, sporting a 7-2 overall record and a perfect 5-0 record in the Grossmont Valley league.  The Wolf Pack are doing pretty good too, 6-3 overall with a 4-1 record in league.

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DOCTOR CHARGED IN SANTEE INMATE’S DEATH

East County News Service

Photo by Rebecca Jefferis Williamson

October 26, 2022 (Santee) – Today, the District Attorney announced that Dr. Friederike Von Lintig will be charged in the death of Elisa Serna, an inmate who died on November 11, 2019 at  the Las Colinas Women’s Detention Facility in Santee.  


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SANTEE SCHOOL DISTRICT CANDIDATES SHARE VIEWS

By Mike Allen

October 25, 2022 (Santee) -- The Santee School District’s board of trustees has three seats of the board’s five seats up for election this cycle.

However, for Seat Number 3, there is only one candidate, incumbent Dustin Burns.

For Seat Number 1, there are two candidates, Ron Burner, a realtor, and incumbent Barbara Ryan.

For Seat Number 5, three candidates are on the ballot: Joseph Dolin, a sales supervisor; incumbent Ken Fox, who has served on the board for 12 years; and Tracie Thill, who describes herself as a parent/ educator/ advocate.

East County Magazine sent out questionnaires to all six candidates and received two responses — from Burner and Thill -- which are published in full below.


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PHOTO OF THE WEEK: MASKED BANDIT IN SANTEE

East County News Service
 
October 23, 2022 (Santee) -- Cynthia Robertson sent in this image, originally posted on Facebook, with the following witty message. "Well, tonight I had the scare of my life coming out of the Walmart in Santee. As I walked up to my car, I was approached by a masked bandit. I stepped back and hollered. When he left, I put my packages in the trunk of my car. I looked around to see if I could find him, and he was hiding behind a bush. So I got out my iPhone and started to take a picture, and then he started running at me! He got within a foot of me and I ran and yelled some more. And I laughed because he was so cute even though he scared me."
 
She adds, "The masked bandit was a raccoon."

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FANITA RANCH SUIT SEEKS TO BLOCK PROJECT

By Mike Allen

October 18, 2022 (Santee) -- A group of four environmental organizations led by Preserve Wild Santee filed a lawsuit to overturn the city of Santee’s approval last month of Fanita Ranch, the 3,000 residential project that has been hotly contested for several decades.


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SPORTSMAN’S WAREHOUSE HOSTS GRAND OPENING IN SANTEE OCT. 6-8, ONE OF SEVERAL BIG RETAIL CHANGES IN COMMUNITY

By Mike Allen

Photos by Mike Allen

October 3, 2022 (Santee) - Santee just got another nationally-known retailer that’s expected to attract loads of shoppers from all over the county.

Sportsman’s Warehouse, a sporting goods chain based in Utah, held a soft opening Sept. 30, and will hold its grand opening Oct. 6-8. It’s the first store in the chain to open in San Diego County. The next closest stores are in Yuma, Az. and Murietta in Riverside County.


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COMMUNITY SAND SCULPTURE EVENT OCT. 9 AS MEMORIAL FOR STEVEN KRUEGER, UPS DRIVER KILLED BY SANTEE PLANE CRASH

East County News Service

 

October 3, 2022 (Santee) -- Friends and relatives of Steven Krueger will host a memorial Sand Sculpture Build on Sunday, October 9, from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in his home community of Ocean Beach near the main lifeguard tower. The event will be led by award-winning master sand carvers of I.B. Posse, who will erect this memorial with the help of Steve’s family, friends and any community members who would like to participate.

 

Almost a year ago, on October 11, 2021, Krueger tragically lost his life when a plane crashed into his UPS truck in Santee. After a 30-year career, Krueger, was less than a year away from his planned retirement.


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ECM FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS: PACK EMERGE VICTORIOUS IN DEFENSIVE SHOWDOWN

Story and photos by Liz Alper

September 16, 2022 (Spring Valley) - We’re finally mostly into conference play and to kick it off, ECM Sports ventured to Spring Valley, where the Matadors of Mount Miguel hosted the Wolf Pack of West Hills.  Both teams are gridlocked at 2-2 and hoping to make some headway going into conference matchups.


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SANTEE COUNCIL APPROVES FANITA RANCH HOUSING ONCE AGAIN

By Mike Allen

Photo:  view of Fanita Ranch site, looking south from State Route 67

September 15, 2022 (Santee) -- Fanita Ranch, the 3,000-unit residential development that has gone through multiple iterations and designs since the city was founded, was approved once again by the Santee City Council after a four and a half-hour meeting Sept. 14.

This approval, on a 4-0 vote with Councilman Rob McNelis recused due to his property benefiting from the project, comes on the heels of the Council’s 2020 approval of the same project. That was followed by a lawsuit from environmental groups, a referendum that put the issue on this November’s ballot, and a court-order rescinding the 2020 approvals due to wildfire evacuation concerns. The Council used the court’s decision to negate its earlier approval and remove the initiative from the upcoming ballot.

Because Fanita Ranch complied with Santee’s Essential Housing Program, a law the city adopted in August 2021, city officials said last night that approval of the new plan presented last night did not entail amending the city’s General Plan, and hence, there is no requirement to hold a public vote.


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PADRE DAM BOARD APPOINTS NEW BOARD MEMBER TO DIVISION 5

Source:  Padre Dam Municipal Water District

September 10, 2022 (Santee) - Padre Dam Municipal Water District’s Board of Directors has appointed Rocky Qualin to the Board of Directors to fill the vacancy in Division 5 as the result of the recent passing of James Peasley. Qualin took the oath of office at the Board meeting on September 7, 2022 and then participated in his first meeting. Qualin will hold office for the balance of the unexpired term which expires December 2, 2022.  


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SUSPECTS ARRESTED FOR SPRING VALLEY SHOOTING; WEAPONS SEIZED

East County News Service

August 31, 2022 (Lakeside) – A suspected gang-related shooting in Spring Valley on August 18 led SWAT teams to search homes in Lakeside and Santee todayThe search found a stash of weapons and resulted in arrests of four individuals.


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NO CHALLENGERS FOR TWO SANTEE DISTRICTS, SO COUNCIL OPTS TO APPOINT

By Mike Allen

August 28, 2022 (Santee) -- In a first for the city of Santee, two incumbent members of the City Council were appointed to another four-year term and will avoid the November election, because no challengers in either district filed papers to challenge them.


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A TASTE OF THAILAND: THAI THAI RESTAURANT IN SANTEE

On the road with the East County Eater

Story and photos by Shiloh Ireland

August 26, 2022 (Santee) -- On the road and in Santee-Yesterday I returned to my favorite Thai restaurant. When I have Thai Cuisine, it has to be authentic, fresh and delicious. Thai Thai Restaurant is located at 10251-B, Mast Blvd; Santee. Phone:  619.335.3453. Thai Thai features dine-in and carry-out, offers reservations and has reasonable prices.

What I especially enjoy, too, is the friendliness of staff and willingness to explain or recommend any dish as there are many. I love curries and their yellow, red and green is a pleasant surprise. One month ago, they added a sushi bar to their operation and it looks very popular also. Thai beer is also on the menu.


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