EAST COUNTY ROUNDUP: LOCAL AND STATEWIDE NEWS

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January 23, 2020 (San Diego) -- East County Roundup highlights top stories of interest to East County and San Diego's inland regions, published in other media.  This week's round-up stories include:  

LOCAL

STATE

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

LOCAL

Family raises concerns about integrity of SDSU investigation into student’s death (San Diego Union-Tribune)

San Diego State University freshman Dylan Hernandez was determined to do well on a midterm exam in early November, telling one of his sisters he planned to stay sober at a fraternity party the night before the test. It did not turn out that way.

Valle de Oro Commission says too many issues with Liberty Charter plan (San Diego Union-Tribune)

A plan by Literacy First Charter Schools to build a new high school on undeveloped land in Rancho San Diego has received tremendous pushback by residents in the Valle de Oro part of East County. Citing traffic congestion along Chase Avenue near Jamacha Road, where the organization has planned to build Liberty Charter High School since 2014, nearly two dozen residents told the local planning group that makes recommendations to the county that they did not want it to support the charter’s request for a permit to build.

Pechanga Resort Casino turning food into fuel (NBC 7)

Ever wonder what happens to the endless amounts of food at big casinos and resorts? One San Diego County establishment collects its food scraps and gives them a transformative second use to be more environmentally responsible.

Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez meets with AB 5 protestors (KUSI)

Out of work freelancers and critics of new gig worker bill Assembly Bill 5 protested Thursday outside Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez’s office. AB 5 is the new law that requires independent and contract workers to be considered employees of a company, rather than independent workers.

La Mesa names Greg Humora as new city manager (San Diego Union-Tribune)

… Humora, 49, has been La Mesa’s assistant city manager since 2016. He started working for the city as an engineering project manager in 1999, and in 2004 was promoted to Public Works director/city engineer.

Caught on camera: Thief snatches $70,000 worth of gold chains from El Cajon jewelry store (10 News)

A family jewelry shop in El Cajon is out tens of thousands of dollars after a brazen robbery Friday. Friday evening, a couple entered Ishtar Jewelry Store on Avocado Avenue and began browsing around….

STATE

California bill would make utilities pay for some blackout costs (AP)

Californians left in the dark by electric companies that shut off their power to prevent wildfires could get paid for things such as lost wages or spoiled food under a bill being considered in the Legislature.

California’s AB 5 leaves women business owners reeling (Forbes)

Aimee Benavides has built a thriving career as a translator and interpreter while homeschooling her nine-year-old daughter, who has autism, and 11-year-old son, who is heavily involved in STEM enrichment classes. What makes it all possible is the home-based business she started in 2010, after leaving a full-time job in the court system…Translators and interpreters are among many fields affected (by AB 5). Faces of AB5, a Twitter account that critics of the law started, includes many tweets from self-employed people in California who say they have lost work—or their entire businesses—as a direct result of the law.  

Impact of gig worker bill AB 5 on meeting and event planners (KUSI)

… Sheryl Schane is a San Diego based certified meeting and convention planner, with over 25 years in the Hospitality and Tourism industry. She has provided meeting planning for corporations, Business Trade Associations and Chambers of Commerce all over Southern CA.. .In 1997, she represented the Downtown San Diego Partnership as a Business Community Liaison and member of the Superbowl Host Committee…Sheryl says that colleagues have received notices from agencies or longtime clients making a tough call to no longer contract with CA based independent meeting planners because of AB5. Instead, these agencies and clients have chosen to hire our colleagues from neighboring states ...

Oh, What a Relief It Isn’t – AB 5 and the B2B Exemption (Capitol Insider/Cal Chamber)

The new law governing independent contracting, AB 5, includes what can be described as a business-to-business (B2B) exemption. But a close examination of the actual language shows that the B2B exemption is virtually inoperable. The author of AB 5 consistently states that the B2B carve-out provides relief to freelancers and sole proprietors to continue operating in the state and not be subject to AB 5’s ABC test. However, even if a service provider can establish that it meets all of the factors, misclassification liability on the hiring entity is so great that no one wants to take the risk..

Firefighters who died in Australia were on California tanker  (Associated Press)

California’s governor says the three American flight crew members who died when their aerial water tanker crashed while battling wildfires in southeastern Australia were part of a crew on a California-based tanker. Gov. Gavin Newsom in a statement on Thursday did not identify the crew members but called them heroes. 

Trump administration opened California land to fracking. Now the state is suing  (Sacramento Bee)

The state of California is suing President Donald Trump’s Bureau of Land Management in an attempt to block the opening of more than 1 million acres of public land to oil and gas drilling, including hydraulic fracturing or fracking.

Judge halts California labor law AB 5 as it relates to truckers (AP)

A federal judge on Thursday indefinitely blocked a new California labor law from applying to more than 70,000 independent truckers, deciding that it is preempted by federal rules on interstate commerce.

Gavin Newsom wants to put real money behind his Native American apology (Sacramento Bee)

California Gov. Gavin Newsom wants nearly half a million dollars per year to fund the Native American council he created in June, according to public documents detailing the governor’s state budget plans.