EAST COUNTY ROUNDUP: LOCAL AND STATEWIDE NEWS

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December 16, 2015 (San Diego's East County) -- East County Roundup highlights top stories of interest to East County and San Diego’s inland regions, published in other media. This week’s top “Roundup” headlines include:

LOCAL

STATE

For excerpts and links to full stories, click “read more” and scroll down.

LOCAL

Drinking water starts flowing from Carlsbad desalinization plant (KPBS)

The Carlsbad Desalination Plant will turn 50 million gallons of seawater a day into drinking water. Plant operators will draw in ocean water, pressurize it and force the salty water through dense filters. The filters will remove the salt and produce drinking water that will be treated and added to the local water supply. The San Diego County Water Authority has agreed to buy the water at set rates for 30 years. At the end of the contract, the water authority will assume the plant’s ownership.

Public weighs in on ambulance service (Ramona Sentinel)

Speakers at Ramona Municipal Water District’s Dec. 8 workshop regarding the future of paramedic transport services in the community said they do not want the district to subcontract with a private ambulance company.

Police arrest homeless man for living in donated house given to him by good Samaritans (10 News)

A group of San Diegans are outraged after building a tiny house for a homeless man only to have police arrest him for living in it.

Protests filed over SDG&E’s move to lobby against energy choice (KPBS)

Environmentalists and San Diego County political leaders are protesting SDG&E's decision to take the only legal option it has to allow the utility to lobby on the alternative energy program called community choice aggregation.

Biometric test begins at Otay Border (San Diego Union-Tribune)

New technology scans faces, irises to identify non-U.S. citizens.

Dianne Jacob asks state to block SDG&E’s plan to lobby against community choice (Jacob letter on Facebook)

I'm asking state regulators to reject SDG&E's latest ploy to sidestep the law and kill prospects for community choice energy. We need to end SDG&E's stranglehold on the energy market and give consumers real choices.

Border Report: For Affordable Homes, San Diegans Go to Tijuana (Voice of San Diego)

Home is where the heart is, and in this case, it just might be across the border.

STATE

Natural gas leak in California raises health, environmental concerns (NPR)

Southern California Gas Co. says it detected a gas leak on Oct. 23 in its Aliso Canyon storage facility. A month and a half later, it still hasn't been able to stop it....

Gun and bomb attack threats close Los Angeles schools in likely hoax (Reuters)

Los Angeles shut more than 1,000 public schools on Tuesday over a threatened attack with bombs and assault rifles, sending hundreds of thousands of students home as city leaders were criticized for overreacting to what authorities later said was apparently a hoax.

10-year old Wukchumni boy’s refusal to sing derogatory song leads to its removal from school(Native News Online)

Fourth-grader Alex Fierro, a member of the Wukchumni (Yokut) tribe, proves one person’s action–or lack of action–can make a difference. He is already at his young age a catalyst for change in his school district. Alex, 10, refused to sing “21 Missions” in his music class. “21 Missions” is a song that glorifies all 21 Catholic missions in California.

Sources: Farook planned another attack years ago (CNN)

Investigators say San Bernardino gunman Syed Rizwan Farook was planning another attack years ago.

Fire at Southern California mosque ‘intentional act’ (KNSD)

… The case is being investigated as a possible hate crime, according to the Riverside County Sheriff's Department.

Brown is no stranger to CPUC involvement (San Diego Union-Tribune)

A new batch of emails released by the City of San Bruno last week show Gov. Jerry Brown supervising his appointees on the California Public Utilities Commission closely.  That interaction could be seen as routine and necessary political oversight, especially now, or it could have deeper implications for Brown given that the agency has been tainted by scandal and is under criminal investigation.

San Onofre: Gov. Brown, PUC inspire public cynicism (San Diego Union-Tribune)

What role did Gov. Jerry Brown play in the California Public Utilities Commission’s 2014 decision to make ratepayers cover 70 percent of the $4.7 billion cost of shutting down the San Onofre nuclear power plant?