La Mesa/Mt. Helix

ECM FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS: NOA SCORES THREE TOUCHDOWNS AS HIGHLANDERS EXCOMMUNICATE DONS 45-27

By Liz Alper

 

Photos by P.J. Panebianco

 

September 14, 2019 (La Mesa) - Week four of ECM Friday Night Lights promises to be a good one.  We went to Helix High School, where senior running back and all-time Helix career rushing leader Elelyon Noa and the Highlanders hosted the Dons of Cathedral Catholic.  Helix is 1-1 coming off of a bye week. Helix has Noa. The Dons have Catholics and some of the best athletes in San Diego. Let’s dive right in.

A FISHY FIRE IN LA MESA

By Miriam Raftery
 
September 13, 2019 (La Mesa) – A pump in an aquarium overheated and caught fire yesterday, sparking a fire inside an office building at 8911 La Mesa Blvd. near Grossmont Blvd. in La Mesa.
 
Heartland Fire & Rescue responded quickly to the early morning blaze, which was reported shortly before 7:40 a.m. and forced their way inside the smoking building.  A search for the source of the smoke led them to a small office, where they located the pump in a fish tank.

SAN DIEGO GREEN BUILDING COUNCIL ANNOUNCES 10TH ANNUAL GREEN HOMES TOUR ON OCT. 19-20

Public tour expands to two days to showcase San Diego County’s most innovative eco-friendly residences

East County News Service

Photo: Straw bale home in Jamul

September 11, 2019 (San Diego) -- The San Diego Green Building Council (SDGBC), a nonprofit organization promoting sustainable building and community practices in San Diego, will host its 10th annual Green Homes Tour on Saturday, Oct. 19 and Sunday, Oct. 20. In response to growing public interest in the green movement and an abundance of groundbreaking projects in the region, the Tour has been expanded this year to two full days, showcasing a diverse collection of the most innovative eco-friendly homes in the San Diego region including several in East County.

LA MESA APPROVES COMMUNITY CHOICE ENERGY PLAN AS WRITTEN

Motion to amend voted down 3/2, final resolution passes unanimously

By Jonathan Goetz

September 11, 2019 (La Mesa) – The City of La Mesa is one step closer to competing with SDG&E on electricity acquisition, after approving the first reading of a resolution authorizing specifics on a joint power agreement, or JPA, with the cities of San Diego, Chula Vista, Encinitas and Imperial Beach at its September 10 meeting. It still requires a second reading in La Mesa and ratification in the other cities. The specifics can be found here. https://www.cityoflamesa.us/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Item/4095?fileID=8858

LA MESA HOSTS COMMUNITY WORKSHOP SEPT. 25 TO DETERMINE HOUSING AND COMMUNITY NEEDS

Source:  City of La Mesa

September 11, 2019 (La Mesa) - The City of La Mesa receives approximately $400,000 annually from the federal government through the Community Development Block Grant Program (CDBG) to fund housing, community development, and infrastructure projects. The city would like your input to help determine housing and community needs in the community for future funding.

HOW HOT WILL IT GET WHERE YOU LIVE?

By Miriam Raftery

 

Roger Coppock contributed to this story

 

September 8, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- Extreme heat is poised to rise steeply in frequency and severity over the coming decades, bringing unprecedented health risks for people and communities across the country. That’s the disturbing finding of the Union of Concerned Scientists in a just-issued report titled Killer Heat in the United States: Climate Choices and the Future of Dangerously Hot Days.

AND MISS REARDON DRINKS A LITTLE: LAMPLIGHTERS SHOW CELEBRATES IDIOSYNCRACIES

Review By Kathy Carpenter

Photos by Adriana Zuniga Williams

September 8, 2019 (La Mesa) - Life would be dull without the eccentricities that make us who we are. Pulitzer winner Paul Zindel presents us with the delightfully complex characters of three sisters in “And Miss Reardon Drinks a Little,” now playing at Lamplighters Theatre in La Mesa through September 22.  The story takes place on an October evening in the apartment of Catherine and Anna Reardon.

DISCOVER THE VEGAN LIFESTYLE OCT. 4 AT GROSSMONT CENTER’S FIRST FRIDAY NIGHT MARKET

East County News Service

 

Photo: Vegan burger, courtesy of Grossmont Center

 

September 6, 2019 (La Mesa) – You’re invited to taste how delicious a vegan lifestyle can be at the First Friday Night Market at Grossmont Center on Friday, October 4 from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Sponsored by Vegan San Diego, this free event gathers the most exceptional vegan vendors all in one spot so that you can savor and sip delectable plant-based food and beverages.

WATCH THE MOON RISE AND MORE: ASTRONOMY NIGHT ON MT. HELIX SEPT. 14

By Miriam Raftery

 

September 3, 2019 (Mt. Helix) – The San Diego Astronomy Association will be setting up telescopes in Mt. Helix Park on September 14 starting at 6 p.m. for free astronomical viewings.  

GINA CHAMPION-CAIN CHARGED WITH SECURITES FRAUD, HAS EAST COUNTY TIES

By Miriam Raftery

September 3, 2019 (San Diego) – Gina Champion-Cain has long been hailed as one of San Diego’s most powerful women business leaders.  But on Thursday, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announced charges against her and her company, ANI Development, calling it a “multi-year $300 million scheme” that allegedly defrauded some 50 retail investors, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports.

TALKING TRANSPORTATION: HEAR OUR INTERVIEWS WITH COLIN PARENT AND KRISTINE ALESSIO

By Miriam Raftery

August 30, 2019 (La Mesa)  The future of transportation has sparked debate across our region. SANDAG and MTS are both moving forward on goals to boost transit access with options such as better trolley and bus service with high-speed rail as a long range option.

But what about reducing traffic gridlock and meeting transportation needs of residents in areas that currently lack adequate transit options?  Should building massive housnig projects in the backcountry that add to traffic gridlock be curtailed? 

Recently,  East County Magazine’s radio show interviewed La Mesa Councilmembers and attorneys Colin Parent and Kristine Alessio on transit issues. Parent  is director of Circulate San Diego and Alessio is the Vice Chair of SANDAG’s regional planning committee.  

Click here to hear our full interview, originally aired on KNSJ radio, and scroll down for highlights.

Audio: 

LA MESA WEIGHS LEGALIZING ADULT-USE CANNABIS SALES AND MANUFACTURING SEPT. 10: HEAR OUR INTERVIEW WITH COUNCILMAN BABER

Hear our interview with Councilman Bill Baber

By Miriam Raftery

September 1, 2019 (La Mesa) – After years of battling illegal marijuana dispensaries and recently licensing the city’s first legal medicinal cannabis dispensary, La Mesa is considering an ordinance to legalize recreational adult-use sales and manufacturing. 

Councilman Bill Baber and Mayor Mark Arapostathis served on a subcommittee that recently held a meeting with cannabis industry representatives. Next up, staff is preparing ordinance language for the City Council to consider on September 10th, when the public can weigh in with comments.

We sat down for an interview with Councilman Baber that originally aired on KNSJ radio.  You can hear the full interview by clicking the audio link, or scroll down for details.

Baber says if the measure is approved Sept. 10 and at a second reading Sept. 24, La Mesa could see its first legal recreational cannabis sales starting as early as January 2020. The first sales of recreational marijuana would be through dispensaries already approved for medical marijuana sales, providing they have operated without significant complaints or legal issues.

Audio: 

GOT BITES? INVASIVE MOSQUITOS PLAGUE LOCAL RESIDENTS

County asks public’s help to report and eradicate invasive mosquitos that can transmit dangerous diseases including Yellow Fever and Zika

By Miriam Raftery

August 28, 2019 (San Diego) – Lakeside resident Dennis Richardson was appalled to discover that “thousands” of Yellow Fever mosquitos were breeding in water dishes under potted plants at his home.  His grandfather was a sanitation engineer who worked to eradicate Yellow Fever so that Americans could build the Panama canal and later battled a Yellow Fever epidemic in Peru. Richardson says, “This work was deadly for most who did the work, as most got yellow fever.”

THRIVE REAL ESTATE IN EAST COUNTY CHANGES FROM INDEPENDENT TO AFFILIATE OF COMPASS, BECOMES COMPASS LA MESA

East County News Service

August 29, 2019 (La Mesa) – Thrive Real Estate, an independent real estate brokerage in the East County, has announced it is now affiliated with Compass, Inc., one of the fastest growing real estate brokerages in the U.S.

CHP SEEKS WITNESSES TO SHOOTING ON I-8 IN LA MESA

By Miriam Raftery
 
August 27, 2019 (La Mesa) – California Highway Patrol is seeking the identity of a shooter who opened fire from a white or silver SUV on eastbound Interstate 8 near State Route 125 at 9:30 last night.  The gunshots  injured a man and woman in a Nissan Sentra car.

LA MESA PARENTS CHARGED WITH MURDER OF BABY BOY

By Miriam Raftery

Photo courtesy of ECM news partner 10 News

August 26, 2019 (La Mesa)   Parents in La Mesa are charged with murdering their infant son, as well as assault and child abuse. Joel Dwayne Rodriguez-Brownell and Jalena Robin Rodriguez were arrested August 18th after their 8-month-old son, also named Joel, suffered life-threatening injuries. Murder charges were added after the child died a day later.

DUI CHECKPOINT IN LA MESA TONIGHT, EXTRA PATROLS THROUGH LABOR DAY

East County News Service

August 24, 2019 (La Mesa) – La Mesa Police Department’s traffic unit will conduct a DUI checkpoint tonight in the 4900 block of Spring Street from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m.  LMPD will also have extra officer on the road now through Sept. 2 over Labor Day weekend looking for drivers suspected of being under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

The Department is partnering with law enforcement agencies nationwide in the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” enforcement campaign over Labor Day weekend.

Labor Day Weekend remains one of the deadliest times of year for alcohol-involved crashes. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 376 deadly crashes nationwide during the 2017 Labor Day holiday period (Sept. 1 to Sept. 5). Among those crashes, more than one-third (36%) involved a drunk driver. Last year, two people were killed, and 31 others injured in California on Labor Day alone.

La MESA COUNCIL APPROVES FOUR-STORY HOUSING AND BUSINESS PROJECT AT BALTIMORE AND UNIVERSITY

By Miriam Raftery
 
August 21, 2019 (La Mesa) – For years, La Mesa residents fought to halt the 18-story Park Station high-rise project proposed at Baltimore and University on a site occupied by auto, RV and motorcycle businesses.  Residents later came together to work with a new developer, JPI, on a project more acceptable to the community. The result is Jefferson La Mesa, a four-story mixed-use development that the City Council has now approved. 
 

SHEA HOMES TO DEVELOP 36 HOMES ON 28-ACRE MOUNT HELIX SITE

By Chris Jennewein

Reprinted with permission from Times of San Diego, a member of the San Diego Online News Association

Photo:  Fuerte Ranch Estates property on Mount Helix. Courtesy Colliers

August 20, 2019 (La Mesa) - Shea Homes has acquired a 28-acre parcel on Mount Helix for $6.5 million with plans develop a community of 36 estate homes.

The new community, named Fuerte Ranch Estates, will be located at the southeast corner of Fuerte Drive and Damon Lane in unincorporated El Cajon.

SMART LEAK DETECTOR REBATES FOR HELIX WATER AND SWEETWATER CUSTOMERS CAN HELP REDUCE BILLS

By Miriam Raftery

August 18, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) – Through a new pilot program, customers of Helix Water and Sweetwater Authority can received a $100 rebate on a qualifying smart leak detector purchased August 1st or later, while supplies last.  Learn more and apply here.

HELIX WATER DISTRICT VOTES 4-1 TO APPROVE RATE HIKE FOR RESIDENTS AND BUSINESSES

Board President Dan McMillan votes against the measure

By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor

August 17, 2019 (La Mesa) -- Water from the Helix Water District (HWD), which serves some 276,000 residents throughout East County San Diego, is going to get a little more expensive in spite of ample water supply in storage.

A GREEN FUTURE DAWNS IN LA MESA: COUNCIL VOTES TO OFFER A COMMUNITY CHOICE ENERGY OPTION FOR RESIDENTS, JOINING SAN DIEGO AND CHULA VISTA

By Rebecca Jefferis Williamson and Miriam Raftery

August 16, 2019 (La Mesa) -- La Mesa City Council members voted unanimously 5-0 on August 13th for a landmark agreement to form a joint powers agreement (JPA) with the cities of San Diego and Chula Vista to create a Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) and give La Mesa residents an alternative to SDG&E for purchasing power.

La Mesa Vice Mayor William “Bill” Baber was on the subcommittee leading the efforts on this matter. “With this vote, La Mesa took another step forward on the path to 100% clean energy!” Baber told ECM via e-mail.

500 TURN OUT TO PARTY ON THE HILL AT THE HEART OF MT. HELIX

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo, left: Twilight atop Mt. Helix during auction at HeART of Mt. Helix

 

August 16, 2019 (Mt. Helix) – More than 500 art aficionados, philanthropists, food and drink fans, and people who like to party turned out at the 12th annual HeART of Mt. Helix  The event benefits the Mt. Helix Park Foundation which maintains the stone-stepped amphitheater, historic cross, surrounding park and wildlife habitat atop the mountain.

LA MESA POLICE DEPARTMENT AND HEARTLAND FIRE AND RESCUE'S EIGHTH ANNUAL SAFETY FAIR AUGUST 10

Source:  City of La Mesa

August 8, 2019 (La Mesa) - Continuing with the National Night Out celebration, the La Mesa Police Department and Heartland Fire and Rescue will be hosting the 8 th Annual Safety Fair on Saturday, August 10th, 2019. The event will run from 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. in the La Mesa Police Department parking lot.

HEALTHCARE LIBRARY IN LA MESA TO HOST FREE MEETING ABOUT PREVENTING DIABETES ON AUGUST 28

Source: Grossmont Healthcare District

Photo:  Marlayna Bollinger, Executive Director Skinny Gene

August 8, 2019 (La Mesa) -- The Dr. William C. Herrick Community Health Care Library will host a talk on lifestyle change and diabetes prevention from 10 to 11 a.m., Wednesday, August 28, 2019, as part of its monthly "Wellness Wednesday" health education series.

NIGHT OUT TO FIGHT CRIME: AUGUST 6 AT THESE SHERIFF STATIONS

East County News Service

August 1, 2019 (San Diego) -- National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer. Millions of neighbors take part in National Night Out across thousands of communities from all fifty states, U.S. territories and military bases worldwide on the first Tuesday in August—including a dozen locations in San Diego County.

You can come meet deputies who patrol your neighborhoods, learn about services the Sheriff’s department provides, and get crime prevention safety tips. You can also explore Sheriff’s programs such as senior volunteers, home vacation checks, the You Are Not Alone program for homebound seniors and the disabled, and Jr. Explorers. Visitors may also meet McGruff “The Crime Dog” and view a Sheriff’s K-9 demo. The events also offer free food and drinks, giveaways and a bicycle raffle at some locations.

Click on one of the communities below for an event flyer at each of these Sheriff's stations and substations including several  East County locations:

FULL HOUSE AT EAST COUNTY LEADERSHIP COUNCIL FORUM: IDEAS FOR SOLVING REGION’S BIGGEST ISSUES

By Miriam Raftery
 
August 1, 2019 (El Cajon) – “We’re not interested in headlines today  We’re interested in the long-term,” George Gastil, founder of the East Count Leadership  Council, told a capacity audience at the El Cajon Library at a July 27th regional issues forum.

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