El Cajon

HOTEL FIRE IN EL CAJON INJURES MAN

 
 
By Miriam Raftery
 
May 6, 2019 (El Cajon) - Firefighters rescued a man in a burning hotel in El Cajon early this morning.
 
Heartland Fire & Rescue crews from El Cajon, with assistance from Santee Fire and San Miguel Fire, were dispatched to the fire at the Relax Inn in the 1200 block of W. Main Street at 5 a.m.  Fire crews arrived within five minutes to discover smoke and fire coming from a downstairs bedroom. 

LITTLE MERMAID REVIEW - BE A PART OF THE EL CAJON VALLEY HIGH SCHOOL WORLD THROUGH MAY 11

 

 

By Kathy Carpenter, reviewer sdtheatrereviews.com

May 5, 2019 (El Cajon) - More than a few teens can identify with Ariel, The Little Mermaid, who hates her dad because he won't let her do what she really wants to do. Her dad doesn't understand or love her.  The theme is brought to us in fun fairy tale fashion, The Little Mermaid, based on the Disney version and yes, Disney does everything possible to entertain.

BEATLES 50TH ANNIVERSARY ABBEY ROAD TRIBUTE CONCERT MAY 19 IN EL CAJON

 

 

East County New Service

May 4, 2019 (El Cajon) – It’s been 50 years since the Beatles completed their final album, Abbey Road, in 1969.  In honor of the anniversary, a 50th Abbey Road Concert will be held Sunday, May 19 at 7:30 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church of El Cajon, 500 Farragut Circle, El Cajon.

POWAY RABBI MAYOR GOLDSTEIN AND EL CAJON MAYOR BILL WELLS JOIN PRESIDENT TRUMP AT NATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER

President forcefully denounces violent attacks at churches, synagogues and mosques

By Miriam Raftery

 

May 4, 2019 (Washington D.C.) – The National Day of Prayer service hosted by President Donald Trump at the White House rose garden on May 2nd included two local VIPs: Rabbi Ysroel Goldstein of Poway and El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells.

22 APPLICANTS SEEK TO FILL EL CAJON COUNCIL VACANCY: INTERVIEWS SET FOR MAY 14

By Miriam Raftery

May 2, 2019 (El Cajon) – The vacancy left on the El Cajon City Council by the resignation of Ben Kalasho has generated strong community interest.  Applications have been received from 22 residents, all seeking to fill the seat. They range from prominent individuals including a former mayor to community activists, members of the planning commission, and a retired police officer who received a Medal of Valor. They bring a diverse range of views and visions for  El Cajon as well.

The City Council will interview applicants at the May 14 meeting at 7 p.m.  Earlier, at the 3 p.m. meeting, Council members will discuss procedures for choosing the next Councilmember, who will fill the at-large seat held by Kalasho until the 2020 election.

The applicants are, in alphabetical order, are listed below along with highlights from their applications:

HOMELESS COUNT SHOWS 6% DROP COUNTYWIDE: HOMELESS RISES IN RAMONA AND EL CAJON BUT DROPS IN SPRING VALLEY

 

Updated with corrected figures for El Cajon, where homelessness rose and a higher percentage are without shelter than last year.

By Miriam Raftery

May 2, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) – For the second year in a row, the annual Point-in-Time homeless count for 2019 found a 6% drop in the number of homeless people living on the streets and in shelters across San Diego County.  The count found a 1% increase in those who are sheltered and a 10% decrease in those left unsheltered.

CAJON VALLEY SCHOOL BOARD PRESIDENT OTERO FAILS TO DISCLOSE SON OWNS COMPANY THAT GOT $655,000 CONTRACT

Outbid contractor claims irregularities with bid process

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor

April 30, 2019 (El Cajon) - A $655,000 construction contract for a new modular building at Los Coches Creek Middle School  was awarded on March 26 to the son of Cajon Valley Union School District Board of Trustees President Tamara Otero.  In total, 37 contractors “pulled plans” for the project and eight actually submitted bids.

Prior to the vote Otero was asked by fellow board member Jill Barto, “It looks like….is this your husband’s company?” Hear audio. Otero replied, “No,” and immediately brushed off the question, saying the internet connection to her computer on the dais was disconnected. (Barto says she asked about the family connections but her phrase, “and your family” was masked by Otero’s response.)

Tamara Otero is the mother of Dryw Ortero, the owner of Otero Construction, Inc., State Contractors License #1025227, with offices located on the 8400 block of Magnolia Street in Santee. The young company has been in business less than two years, founded in April 2017.

Audio: 

Cajon Valley 3-26-2019

DRIVER SENTENCED TO THREE YEARS FOR INJURING BOY ON BIKE

 

 

By Miriam Raftery 

April 29, 2019 (El Cajon) - Courtney Webber has been sentenced to three years in prison for hitting a 9-year-old bicyclist in El Cajon on October 5, 2018, then fleeing the scene, Times of San Diego reports.  Webber pled guilty to the crime.

REALTORS TRADE GROUP HONORED FOR HELPING EAST COUNTY HOMELESS POPULATION

 

 

East County News Service

Photo:  (from left to right) Tracy Morgan Hollingworth, Joe Mackey, Robert Calloway, Kay LeMenager, Carol Lewis, Anna Marie Piconi Snyder.

April 26, 2019 (El Cajon) – The Pacific Southwest Association of Realtors (PSAR), a real estate trade group for San Diego-area realtors, recently presented a $5,000 check to the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce Foundation to help pay for a website featuring resources to assist homeless people in the East County.

TWO MAYORS TO MISS THEIR OWN EAST COUNTY MAYORS PRAYER LUNCHEON, THURSDAY, MAY 2 IN EL CAJON; BOTH WILL BE IN WASHINGTON, D.C. AT SEPARATE EVENTS

 

 

East County News Service

April 26, 2019 (El Cajon) – The East County Mayors Prayer Luncheon will be held on the National Day of Prayer, Thursday, May 2, at Foothills Christian Church, 365 West Bradley Ave., El Cajon. The public is invited to attend.

DEADLINE TO APPLY FOR EL CAJON COUNCIL VACANCY IS APRIL 26

 

 

East County News Service

April 24, 2019 (El Cajon) -- El Cajon’s City Council will be choosing a new Councilmember to fill the vacancy left by the resignation of Ben Kalasho.

 

The Council will make its decision at its regularly scheduled May 14th meeting.

ECPAC TO BE RENAMED MAGNOLIA PERFORMING ARTS CENTER

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 23, 2019 (El Cajon) – When the East County Performing Arts Center reopens later this year under management of Live Nation, it will have a new name:  Magnolia Performing Arts Center. Magnolia is the city of El Cajon’ official flower and its image appears in the city’s logo. The center, located on Main Street, is accessed off the Magnolia Avenue exit from Interstate 8.

EL CAJON HONORED FOR PROJECTS

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

April 23, 2019 (El Cajon) – El Cajon has received projects awards from  the Construction Management Association of America (CMAA), the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), and the American Public Works Association (APWA).   The new animal shelter was honored by all three organizations.  Other projects honored including Stony’s Neighborhood Park improvements, sewer and traffic light projects. City Manager Graham Mitchell advised the City Council and Mayor that the city has received the following awards:

CONGRESSIONAL SUBCOMMTTEES TO HOLD JOINT HEARING ON STUDENT VETERANS WEDNESDAY AT GROSSMONT COLLEGE

 

 

East County News Service

 

April 23, 2019 (El Cajon) -- On Wednesday, April 24, the Congressional Committee on Education and Labor’s Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Investment and the Committee on Veterans Affairs’ Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity will hold a joint field hearing entitled, “Protecting Those Who Protect Us: Ensuring the Success of our Student Veterans.”

 

WOMAN PEDESTRIAN KILLED IN EL CAJON

 

 

East County News Service

April 22, 2019 (El Cajon) – A woman struck by a Ford Explorer on April 19th in El Cajon succumbed to her injuries at a local hospital.  

El Cajon Police and paramedics responded to the accident in the 800 block of South Mollison Ave. around 7:50 p.m.  Witnesses told officers that the woman, 69, stepped off the curb outside of a marked crosswalk and was struck by the Ford Explorer. The driver of the Explorer, a 58-year-old El Cajon resident, remained on scene and cooperated with authorities, says Lt Stephen Kirk.  Drugs or alcohol are not suspected as factors in the collision.

THE CITY OF EL CAJON ELIMINATES MEETING VIDEO STREAMING FAILURE WITH THE HELP OF SWAGIT

 

 

Swagit Productions, LLC provides EASETM hands-free Webcasting system for optimal meeting video delivery to the citizens of El Cajon

Source:  Swagit

April 18, 2019 (El Cajon) - The City of El Cajon provides their residents with an improved City Council meeting viewing experience via Swagit Productions and their EASE™ streaming solution. 

“The City of El Cajon had an existing video streaming product that was not meeting our needs,” said Sara Diaz, Director of Information Technology for El Cajon.  “The system had a high failure rate and our staff had to spend a lot of time on the phone with their support trying to get the system functional and videos uploaded from our personal copies. 

EL CAJON VALLEY HOST LIONS AND WINCHESTER WIDOWS PRESENT 'GUNSMOKE IX' MAY 18

 

 

East County News Service

April 16, 2019 (El Cajon) - The El Cajon Valley Host Lions and the Winchester Widows present their annual fundraiser Gunsmoke IX on Saturday, May 18 at El Cajon Elks Lodge 1812 (1400 E. Washington Ave., El Cajon) from 6:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.

GROSSMONT COLLEGE LITERARY ARTS FESTIVAL STACKED WITH BOOK AND POETRY READINGS, PRESENTATIONS

 

 

Source:  Grossmont College

April 16, 2019 (El Cajon) - An April 22 panel presentation by a trio of local writers on the modern era of agent-free self-publishing, and later in the evening, student readings and performances of original work kick off Grossmont College’s 23rd annual Literary Arts Festival.

PACIFIC COAST CONFERENCE CHAMPIONS AGAIN: GROSSMONT COLLEGE WOMEN'S TENNIS CAPTURES CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP FOR SEVENTH CONSECUTIVE YEAR

 

 

Source:  Grossmont College

Photo courtesy grossmont.prestosports.com

April 8, 2019 (El Cajon) - Grossmont College women's tennis sealed the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference Championship after its final conference match against Southwestern College April 4, 2019. The Griffin women defeated the Jaguars 9-0 and arrived home with their seventh consecutive conference title.

CAJON VALLEY SENDS RESPONSE TO CALAWARE, ADDS OPEN GOVERNMENT ACTION TO APRIL 30 AGENDA

 

 

By Miriam Raftery 

April 2, 2019 (El Cajon)  Cajon Valley Union School District’s board president Tamara Otero has sent a formal response letter to Californians Aware (CalAware) agreeing to comply with demands in a legal cease and desist order that the watchdog organization had sent the district on East County Magazine’s behalf. The board’s April 30, 2019 meeting will include the compliance issue on the agenda, the letter added.  

A SMOKIN’ HOT CELEBRATION AT BUCKBOARD’S BARBECUE & BREW





By Miriam Raftery

March 31, 2019 (El Cajon) – Slow-cooked, wood-smoked meats barbecuing on an old wagon base, or buckboard, filled the air with mouth-watering aromas at a ribbon-cutting held March 20th at Buckboard’s Barbecue & Brew in El Cajon by the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce.

The restaurant specializes in California smokehouse barbecue, which owner Fadi Shihadeh describes as “Santa Mara-style with a twist” that includes smoke flavor in all meats. They also do catering, if you've got a hankering for barbecue at your next outdoor gathering.

Now located at 975 Greenfield Drive, Buckboard’s moved to El Cajon from San Diego, where it was originally owned by Padres pitcher Randy Jones. The Shihadeh family bought it and ran it for many years, before moving recently to El Cajon at 975 Greenfield Drive.

“This really is a homecoming for us. It feels great to be back,” Shihadeh told ECM during the Chamber event.

HOME OF GUIDING HANDS CLIENTS LOVING ON THERAPY DOGS; PAW SHAKES, KISSES, LOTS OF AFFECTION

 

 

East County News Service

April 1, 2019 (El Cajon) – The Home of Guiding Hands (HGH), a non-profit organization that provides services, training and advocacy to people with developmental and intellectual disabilities and their families, recently hosted its second annual “Pizza and Pets” event at its Verbeck Center headquarters in El Cajon.

HIT-AND-RUN DRIVER WHO STRUCK BOY ON BICYCLE PLEADS GUILTY

 
 
By Miriam Raftery
 
March 30, 2019 (El Cajon) - Courtney Webber has pled guilty and will be sentenced next month for hitting a 9-year-old bicyclist in El Cajon on October 5, 2018, then fleeing the scene, Times of San Diego reports.
 
ECM photographer Robert Gehr witnessed the accident near West Main and Sunshine.  He raced to comfort the young victim, also providing a description of the vehicle to police.

SUSPECT KILLED IN EL CAJON HAD ATTACKED A SECURITY GUARD, VIDEO AND WITNESS STATEMENTS REVEAL

 
 
By Miriam Raftery
 
March 29, 2019 (El Cajon) – Surveillance video, a cell phone video and witness interviews are providing new details on a man shot dead yesterday in the 1300 block of East Main St. in El Cajon.
 
The evidence indicates the man was likely trying to burglarize and then carjack a vehicle, says Lt. Royal Bates.  When an off-duty security guard reported the vehicle break-in, the suspect tried to “violently attack” the guard.  The guard told police he then pepper-sprayed the suspect, but it had no effect.

CAJON VALLEY SCHOOL BOARD AMENDS POLICY ON ACCESS TO RECORDINGS OF PUBLIC MEETINGS—AFTER LEGAL DEMAND ON ECM’S BEHALF

CalAware warns district after CVUSD destroys requested school board meeting recordings

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor

Updated with CVUSD letter to CalAware)

March 28, 2019  (El Cajon) -- The Cajon Valley Union School District Board of Trustees voted 3-2 on Tuesday to change its policy on board meeting audio recordings. The action came after the district received a legal warning letter from Californians Aware (CalAware) regarding the district’s destruction of recordings from the Dec. and Nov. public meetings requested in a California Public Records Act request by East County Magazine in December.

Instead of destroying audio of board meetings after 30 days, the district will now keep them for one year and will make them available to the public on request on compact disc (CD). The measure, spearheaded by board trustee Jill Barto, was affirmed by Barto along with trustees Karen Clark-Meija and Jim Miller. Cajon Valley Union School District (CVUSD) trustees President Tamara Otero and Jo Alegria voted “no” on the new policy.

The letter addressed to Otero accused the CVUSD of violating multiple sections of the California Government Code relating to its refusal to permit inspection and copying of audiotape recordings made by the District of open and public meetings. The government act violated is more commonly known as the “Ralph M. Brown Act” which legally obligates government agencies and bodies to abide by specific rules regarding open meetings and access to public documents.

Audio: 

GROSSMONT COLLEGE TAKING THE LEAD TO CUT HIGH TEXTBOOK COSTS

 

 

Students saving nearly $1.3 million during 2018-2019

Source:  Grossmont College

March 28, 2019 (El Cajon) - Grossmont College Counselor and Professor Dave Dillon will pick up a national textbook excellence award in Philadelphia in June, but it is his passion for providing free textbooks to all students that gives him the greatest satisfaction.

NEW CAPTAINS IN CHARGE AT RANCHO SAN DIEGO AND ALPINE STATIONS

 
 
By Miriam Raftery
 
Photo by Ron Logan: Sheriff Bill Gore
 
March 28, 2019 (San Diego) – Sheriff Bill Gore today announced promotion of three lieutenants to captains. 
 
Captain Richard Williams will be in charge of the Rancho San Diego station, replacing Captain Charles Cinnamo. Cinnamo had been temporarily assigned since Captain Marco Garmo was placed on administrative leave amid to a federal criminal arms sales investigation.

SUSPECT SHOT, KILLED BY MOTORIST IN EL CAJON

 
 
East County News Service
 
March 28, 2019 (El Cajon) – An off-duty security guard interrupted a possible vehicle burglary or carjacking this morning in the 1300 block of East Main Street. The vehicle’s owner became involved and during the altercation, “the vehicle owner fired a handgun, striking and killing the suspect,” says Lt. Royal Bates with the El Cajon Police Department.

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