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March 23,  2016 (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:



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


Study: Sex offenders, criminals hit home prices in 7 San Diego County ZIP codes (10 News)

A high number of sex offenders and other registered criminals are taking a toll on home prices, according to a new report released Thursday.

Want these public records? Pay $202,500 (San Diego Union-Tribune)

 Sunshine Week project finds some governments don't make it cheap to retrieve public documents.

Parks staff shares plans for county preserves (Ramona Sentinel)

Future plans for more public access to county-owned preserves in Ramona was the focus of a presentation at Ramona Trails Association’s (RTA) March meeting. County Parks and Recreation’s District Manager Dave Holt talked about the work underway in the Ramona Grasslands Preserve for a staging area and trail off Montecito Way, the success of docent-led hikes on Old Survey 97, plans for public meetings on the Boulder Oaks Preserve, and a call for volunteers to help with trail maintenance.

Church, other buildings catch fire in Spring Valley (10 News)

Emergency crews were on scene of a second alarm fire at a church in the Spring Valley area Friday night.

Sea World ending killer whale breeding program (10 News)

SeaWorld announced Thursday it will immediately stop breeding killer whales, essentially phasing out the iconic orcas from its theme parks following years of controversy over keeping them in captivity.

Witness Takes The Stand In Filner Sexual Harassment Case (KPBS)

A woman who claims she was the victim of sexual harassment at the hands of former Mayor Bob Filner testified Tuesday that she felt "doomed" after she was accosted in 2013 at De Anza Cove.

2 SD legislators dominate the Uber debate (Voice of San Diego)

…(Lorena) Gonzalez also last week introduced a bill, AB 1727, to help “gig economy” workers like those Uber drivers …Known as the California 1099 Self-Organizing Act, the legislation would allow independent workers who do their work based on a technology platform (like the Uber app) to have some employment rights..nother San Diego legislator, one with many of the same constituents as Gonzalez, is less friendly toward Uber: Liam Dillon wrote this week about  Sen. Ben Hueso’s family ties to the taxi industry and whether those tied have influenced how he deals with ride-share companies.

San Diego Hospice Could Have Been Saved (KPBS)

The hospice, considered a pioneering organization in end-of-life care, closed in 2013 amid a Medicare audit that alleged it owed the federal government more than $110 million in false claims.

Republican Party makes endorsements (SD Rostra)

From GOP Chairman Tony Krvaric: On Monday night the Republican Party of San Diego County met to finish up June endorsement considerations and get a head start on the November elections. For the June election these candidates were endorsed: CA Assembly, District 76: Rocky Chavez (majority vote) U.S. Congressional, District 51: Juan Hidalgo, Jr. (majority […]

Developer trying ballot route to win approval for Lilac Hills project (KPBS)

The recent defeat of Measure A, which would have led to the development of lagoon-front property in Carlsbad, has not discouraged the developer of the proposed Lilac Hills Ranch in Valley Center from trying the citizens initiative approach… Back in rural Valley Center, former county Planning Commissioner Patsy Fritz worries that more than a decade of public meetings on the General Plan could be wiped out by a November initiative, and with it, their rural lifestyle.

Lilac Hills initiative includes several ‘get out of lawsuit free’ cards for developer (Voice of San Diego)

With its decision to have voters weigh in on Lilac Hills Ranch, a sprawling housing project in Valley Center, the project’s developers don’t just see a more viable path to approval – they also see a way around many of the issues that have long dogged the project.


Obama-Backed Solar Plant Could Be Shut Down For Not Producing Enough Energy (Daily Caller)

California regulators may force a massive solar thermal power plant in the Mojave Desert to shut down after years of under-producing electricity — not to mention the plant was blinding pilots flying over the area and incinerating birds. The Ivanpah solar plant could be shut down if state regulators don’t give it more time to meet electricity production promises it made as part of its power purchase agreements with utilities, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Battle Over California Drug Pricing Initiative Could Be One Of The Most Expensive (KPBS)

The battle over a fall ballot measure that aims to control the price of prescription drugs has already attracted more than $50 million in contributions, mostly in opposition.

California water cutbacks draw flood of complaints as reservoirs rise (Reuters)

 Rick Williams stood on his dead front lawn near Sacramento, California, wondering why he still pays a drought surcharge on his water bill and cannot run his sprinklers as often as he needs when a nearby reservoir is so full it could overflow come spring.

Southern California takes security measures after Brussels blast (Times of San Diego)

The terror attacks at the international airport and a subway station in Brussels that claimed at least 34 lives have resulted in heightened security on transit lines in Los Angeles as authorities monitor the situation. No changes in security were immediately announced for airports in San Diego and Los Angeles, but the Department of Homeland Security said it “will not hesitate to adjust our security posture, as appropriate, to protect the American people.”

Lufthansa reports near miss with drone over Los Angeles (Reuters)

The pilot of a Lufthansa passenger jumbo jet reported a drone aircraft nearly collided with the airliner on Friday on its landing approach to Los Angeles International Airport, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

In California, Dealing With A Drought And Preparing For A Flood (NPR)

Why are some California reservoirs releasing water even though the state is going through an extreme drought? Turns out it's to prevent an even bigger disaster. But the strategy may change soon.

California college attacker inspired by ISIS, acted alone: FBI (Reuters)

 A teenager who injured four people in a stabbing spree on a California university campus before he was shot dead by police last year was inspired by the Islamic State militant group but acted alone, the FBI said on Thursday.

The California desert is dying, and people seem to think that’s okay (Newsweek)

You may think you know the desert. Sand and cacti, spread over an expanse of infinite flatness, baked by relentless sunlight. Roadrunners chased by wily coyotes. Rattlesnakes lurking under rocks. And meth labs, just as in Breaking Bad. Meth labs guarded by rattlesnakes.


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