SAN DIEGO FBI ASKS PUBLIC HELP TO PREVENT VIOLENCE RELATED TO THE CAPITOL INSURRECTION AND INAUGURATION

SUPERVISORS APPROVE HOUSING FOR MENTALLY ILL HOMELESS AND THOSE AT RISK

SANTEE COUNCIL SETS FANITA RANCH ELECTION FOR NOV. 2022, ALSO APPROVES DIVERSITY PROGRAM

NEW RANCHO HELIX DE ORO FIRE SAFE COUNCIL OFFERS FIRE-SAFE TIPS

CONGRESSWOMAN SARA JACOBS TO HOST INFORMATION SESSION ON COVID-19 VACCINES THURSAY AT 2 PM

SANTEE COLLABORATIVE LAUNCHES NEW CAMPAIGN PROMOTING DIVERSITY, EQUITY AND INCLUSION

10 HOUSE REPUBLICANS JOIN DEMOCRATS, VOTE TO IMPEACH TRUMP FOR INCITING INSURRECTION

VOEPEL STATEMENTS ON CAPITOL INSURRECTION PROVOKE CALLS FOR EXPULSION OR RESIGNATION

FORMER SANTEE COUNCILMAN HOULAHAN WILL RUN FOR CONGRESS

EX-GOV. SCHWARZENEGGER: TRUMP SOUGHT “COUP”, LIKENS CAPITOL INSURRECTION TO NAZIS IN HIS NATIVE AUSTRIA

PRO-TRUMP DEMONSTRATORS CLASH WITH ANTI-FASCIST COUNTERPROTESTERS IN SAN DIEGO

DRIVER WHO DRAGGED AND INJURED EL CAJON POLICEMAN IS ARRESTED AND CHARGED WITH ATTEMPTED HOMICIDE

READER’S EDITORIAL: CALIFORNIA SMALL BUSINESSESES NEED HELP

An open letter to Governor Gavin Newsom and state legislators signed by 81 Chambers of commerce and other business groups

Source:  Save Small Business Coalition

December 14, 2020 (San Diego) - Dear Governor Newsom, State Senators, Assemblymembers and All California Elected Officials:

As leaders of organizations serving businesses of California, we are deeply concerned about State policies that are severely impacting our local businesses.

'THE WILL OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE': OFFICIAL ELECTORAL COLLEGE VOTE FINALIZES THAT BIDEN WON AND TRUMP LOST

By Brett Wilkins, staff writer

Originally published by Common Dreams under a Creative Commons license

December 14, 2020 (Washington, D.C.) - Members of the Electoral College convened in state capitals across the nation on Monday to cast their official votes for president, and despite a desperate and doomed attempt by President Donald Trump to put forth a slate of "alternative electors," the official tallies put Joe Biden that much closer to becoming the 46th president of the United States.

EL CAJON POLICE OFFICER DRAGGED, STRUCK BY VEHICLE AND SERIOUSLY INJURED: SUSPECTS REMAIN AT LARGE

Update Jan. 11: El Cajon police announced the arrest of suspect David Francis Cepeda Pangilinan by the Los Angeles Rampart Narcotics Detail.
 
Update Dec. 18:  The officer has been released from the hospital and is expected to make a full recovery.
 
Update Dec. 14, 2020 10 p.m.:  The investigation by El Cajon Police has identified a suspect who is being sought for questioning:  David Francis Cepeda Pangilinan, from Guam is 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighs 200 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. 

 
By Miriam Raftery
 
December 14, 2020 (El Cajon) – An El Cajon Police officer is hospitalized in a trauma center in critical but stable condition due to serious injuries sustained at 8:30 a.m. during a traffic stop of a rented black Volkswagen SUV, CA license plate 8LC117.

SUPERVISORS DELAY DECISION ON RENEWABLE ENERGY OVERLAY OPTIONS UNTIL JAN. 27

East County News Service

 

December 13, 2020 (San Diego’s East County) – San Diego County Supervisors have voted to delay until January 27, 2021 a decision on Renewable Energy Overlay Options originally slated for Dec. 9, 2020.  The options aim to streamline approval of industrial-scale wind and solar projects across much of East County’s rural, mountain and desert areas.

COUNTY HAS ABOUT $4 MILLION FOR NON-PROFITS SERVING PEOPLE IMPACTED BY COVID-19

By Jose A. Alvarez, County of San Diego Communications Office

Image credit:  Shutterstock

December 13, 2020 (San Diego) - Do you run a non-profit organization which serves low and moderate-income people who’ve been impacted by the novel coronavirus pandemic?

NO ROOM IN THE ICU FOR CENTRAL CALIFORNIANS; SOUTHERN CA ICU AVAILABILITY DROPS TO 5.3%

By Jonathan Goetz

Photo: ICU medical worker, via Bing

December 13, 2020 (California) – The San Joaquin Valley region in Central California, comprised of Calaveras, Fresno, Kern, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Merced, San Benito, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Tulare, and Tuolumne counties, had zero available ICU beds, as of Saturday, 16 days after Thanksgiving. Only one day prior, according to the California Department of Public Health, that figure had been 4.5%.

The Southern California region's ICU availability is at 5.3%, according to ECM News Partner 10News.

At this rate, San Diego and Los Angeles may have no ICU availability as early as Tuesday.

LEMON GROVE RESIDENT WINS 10TH ANNUAL HOEHN MOTORS LUXURY CAR RAFFLE TO BENEFIT RONALD MCDONALD HOUSE

East County News Service

Photo courtesy of Hoehn Motors: Winner Thomas A. Schaefer had a choice of these vehicles

December 12, 2020 (Lemon Grove) --  Raising $320,000 for Ronald McDonald House Charities® of San Diego to support families with a child in a medical crisis, the 10th Annual Hoehn Motors Luxury Car Raffle concluded last week, naming Thomas A. Schaefer of Lemon Grove, the grand prize winner. 

POLICE SEEK WITNESSES TO FATAL SHOOTING AT LAKE MURRAY VILLAGE SHOPPING CENTER

By Miriam Raftery
 
December 12, 2020 (La Mesa) – A 29-year-old man was found dead of gunshot wounds in the parking lot of the Marketplace at Lake Murray Village, 5600 Lake Murray Blvd. in La Mesa last night.  Police seek witnesses as well as a dark sedan, possibly a two-door, seen leaving the scene at a high rate of speed.

FORMER LA MESA MERCHANT ARRESTED FOR VIOLATING RESTRAINING ORDER

By Miriam Raftery
 
Photo: Peter Carzis, right, was earlier charged with battery among other charges, after allegedly attacking journalists outside of his La Mesa store.
 
December 11, 2020 (La Mesa) – Peter Carzis was arrested Tuesday and charged with violating a domestic restraining order, after authorities were called to an apartment in the 8200 block  Lemon Avenue in Lemon Grove, 10 News reports. Carzis had been ordered to stay at least 100 feet away from the protected party’s address, but was arrested sitting outside.
 
Carzis, the former owner of Peter’s Men’s Apparel in La Mesa, was previously arrested in January and charged with committing a lewd act in public, misdemeanor battery and felony vandalism.  He pleaded not guilty and was ordered to undergo a medical examination at that time.
 

COYOTE CLAUS: A DESERT TWIST ON A CLASSIC HOLIDAY TALE

East County News Service
 
December 11, 2020 (San Diego’s East County) -- Celebrate the holiday season with Coyote Claus: A Southwestern Desert Tale by Cory Cooper Hansen. This original manuscript brings the cultural heritage of the Sonoran Desert to life through the familiar poem by Clement C. Moore, A Visit from St. Nicholas. Through this rollicking holiday adventure, readers discover the uniqueness of the Southwestern United States. Each page features non-fiction facts to help deepen the reader’s knowledge of the Southwest by connecting the story of the poem to factual information about the area.  

CA EDUCATION ADVOCATES PRESS FOR BIG CHANGES UNDER BIDEN ADMINISTRATION

By Suzanne Potter, California News Service

December 11, 2020 (Sacramento) --  With the prospect of a new Biden administration on the horizon, California groups that advocate for education reform are hoping for big changes in 2021.

Ed Honowitz is a former Pasadena school-board member who now runs the California Labor Management Initiative for the nonprofit Californians Dedicated to Education. Honowitz thinks the first priority should be aid to the states, which have lost billions during the pandemic.

KING TIDES, RIP CURRENTS AND WINDY WEATHER FORECAST FOR REGION

East County News Service
 
December 11, 2020 (San Diego) – Santa Ana winds could return this weekend and early next week, bringing elevated fire conditions but likely only moderate wind gusts up to 30 miles per hour in mountain areas, the National Weather Service forecasts.
 
But along the coastal areas, flooding is possible in low-lying areas during high tides, with dangerous swimming conditions and high risk of rip currents. Dramatic king tides with waves up to nearly seven feet are forecast Sunday through Tuesday.

REGION’S ICU CAPACITY DROPS TO 7.7%; SOME LOCAL HOSPITALS ARE NEARLY FULL

By Miriam Raftery

December 11, 2020 (San Diego) – San Diego County reported 2,040 cases on Dec. 9, as the availability of ICU beds (ICU capacity) in the Southern California region dropped to just 7.7%.  While San Diego still has just over 20% of ICU beds available, Orange and Imperial Counties are at or near capacity, meaning patients may be turned away or diverted to hospitals in adjacent counties, further stressing San Diego’s medical care system.

Nationwide, at least 200 hospitals are at full capacity and a third are nearly out of ICU beds, with over 90% of ICU beds occupied, CNN reported Dec. 10, based on data from the  US Department of Health and Human Services.

A database now available to the public now shows capacity of all hospitals in San Diego County. Although it does not list ICU beds, it does reveal that some hospitals are filling up. Sharp Hospital in Chula Vista has 93% of its adult inpatient beds in use (just 7% available); Palomar Medical Center has 91% in use, Sharp Grossmont Hospital and UCSD Medical Center each have 85% of all beds for adult inpatients occupied.

LOCAL NONPROFIT AND SMALL BUSINESS EXPERTS UNITE TO SUPPORT BUSINESSES AFFECTED BY COVID-19

Source: RISE San Diego

COVID-19 pandemic continues to negatively impact small businesses and nonprofits 

RISE San Diego to host interactive workshops providing support resources

Local business experts to discuss better business practices and tools 

December 10, 2020 (San Diego Webinar) -- Small businesses and nonprofits have been hit especially hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to the rise in cases and updated state restrictions, businesses in San Diego need increased support.  

During the month of December, RISE San Diego will host several virtual workshops as part of the organization’s Nonprofits and Small Business Trainings series. The workshops will offer free training for staff, board members, and volunteers from local nonprofits and small businesses who are interested in building their organizational capacity and ways to ensure sustainability. By offering training workshops, RISE San Diego will support those affected, with creative resources and expanded networks.

COUNTY HAS ABOUT $4 MILLION FOR NON-PROFITS SERVING PEOPLE IMPACTED BY COVID-19

By José A. Álvarez, County of San Diego Communications Office

Photo credit: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Do you run a non-profit organization which serves low and moderate-income people who’ve been impacted by the novel coronavirus pandemic?

If so, you may qualify for a share of about $4 million from the County Housing and Community Development Services’ Community Development Block Grant (CDBG).

The funds are available for projects in the following areas:

AMTRAK PACIFIC SURFLINER IMPLEMENTS TEMPORARY ADJUSTMENTS FOR THOSE WHO NEED TO TRAVEL FOR THE HOLIDAYS

Source: AMTRAK

Photo provided courtesy of LOSSAN Rail Corridor Agency

Reservations will be required on Pacific Surfliner trains traveling between San Diego and San Luis Obispo on December 23-28, 2020.

December 10, 2020 (San Diego) -- To safely manage travel on the Amtrak® Pacific Surfliner® route around the Christmas holiday, reservations will be required on trains that travel between San Diego, Orange County, Los Angeles, Ventura, Santa Barbara, and San Luis Obispo counties. Customers are encouraged to travel only for essential purposes in observation of the statewide stay-at-home order, and to familiarize themselves with local health and safety regulations that may vary by region.

A reservation will be required to travel on Pacific Surfliner trains beginning Wednesday, December 23 through Monday, December 28, 2020, to help manage capacity and allow customers to distance themselves from each other onboard. Additionally, the Rail 2 Rail program will be suspended during this period - monthly Metrolink and COASTER passes will not be accepted onboard Pacific Surfliner trains on these dates.

STRANGER THAN FICTION: WALTER G. MEYER RELEASES NEW BOOK OF FASCINATING YET TRUE STORIES

Meyer’s new anthology-memoir explores all shades of humanity through personal anecdotes

 

East County News Service

 

December 10, 2020 (San Diego) -- For many people, the COVID-19 shutdown allowed ample time to work on personal projects, spend time on social media, or simply reflect on one’s life. San Diego author Walter G. Meyer did all three, and the result was his new book, If You Weren’t Here, This Would Not Be Happening: plogs from my life. Featuring dozens of humorous, tragic, and touching anecdotes from his self-described weird life, the book emerged from Meyer’s attempts to distract himself from a crazy world. As it so happens, life is stranger than fiction.

NEW CA LAW MAY NOT GO FAR ENOUGH TO PROTECT AGAINST DANGEROUS CHEMICALS USED IN FIREFIGHTING

By Rebecca Jefferis Williamson

(Stock Photo courtesy of Pixaboy on Stockvault.net) 

December 10, 2020 (San Diego’s East County) -- Amazon Prime announced on Dec. 8 that it will ban products that contain “forever toxics” or PFAS/PFOS in their Amazon Kitchen Products. But the same banned chemicals remain in many products – including foam used to fight industrial and airport fires, as well as in firefighting gear and more.

The movie “Dark Waters” illustrates the dangers of these chemicals, which are contained in many consumer products, have been linked to cancer and never break down in the environment.

Senate Bill (SB)1044 makes changes to the PFAS levels allowed in fire-fighting foam, will go into effect Jan. 1, 2022 in California. 

John “Jack” Sexton, with Pyrocool Technologies, alleges that the bill does not go far enough in protecting firefighters from the toxins in competitors’ firefighting foams. His company produces firefighting foams without PFAS/PFOS, but though he contends the products are effective, they have not been authorized by federal authorities.  

COUNTY REPORTS 2,104 NEW VIRUS CASES AND 15 DEATHS AS PANDEMIC SURGES

By Chris Jennewein, Times of San Diego, a member of the San Diego Online News Association 

December 10, 2020 (San Diego) - San Diego County public health officials reported the second highest daily increase in coronavirus cases on Wednesday and pleaded with residents to follow the stay-at-home order to avoid overwhelming the health system.

There were 2,104 new cases and 15 deaths, with 8.4% of the latest tests coming back positive.

Supervisor Nathan Fletcher told a media briefing that projections showed all county ICU beds would have been occupied before Christmas without the regional lockdown, which is now in its third day.

“When you have as many cases as we have, and it is spreading as fast as it is, there are very few settings that are safe,” warned Fletcher.

HUNDREDS OF SAN DIEGO FAMILIES TO RECEIVE MUCH NEEDED GROCERIES AT ROCK CHURCH EL CAJON AND CITY HEIGHTS FOOD DISTRIBUTION

Partnering with local businesses to connect resources with those in need

East County News Service

December 10, 2020 (San Diego’s East County) -- On Thursday, December 10 the Rock Church City Heights campus will also host a food distribution and on Tuesday, December 15th, the Rock Church East County campus will also host their food distribution. All events are free and open to the community.

JAMUL INDIAN VILLAGE OF CALIFORNIA'S CHAIRWOMAN, ERICA M. PINTO, ELECTED CHAIR OF SOUTHERN INDIAN HEALTH COUNCIL, INC.

Chairwoman expands efforts to improve lives of Native peoples

East County News Service

December 10, 2020 (Jamul) - On Monday, November 30, Erica M. Pinto, Chairwoman of The Jamul Indian Village of California (JIV), was elected Chair of the Southern Indian Health Council, Inc. (SIHC).  The SIHC, founded in 1982, is a Native American organization which aims to protect and improve the physical, mental, and spiritual health of the Native American community.  Having intermittently served on the 14-member SIHC board since 2004, Ms. Pinto will begin her two-year term as Chair in January 2021.  The Chairwoman, who was honored last month with the American Indian Chamber of Commerce of California’s highest honor, the Warrior Award, has become a recognized leader in the effort to improve the lives of Native peoples.

LMPD FIRED MATT DAGES, OFFICER IN AMAURIE JOHNSON INCIDENT, ON AUG. 7, CITY REVEALS AFTER APPEALS BOARD UPHOLDS ACTION

By Miriam Raftery

December 10, 2020 (La Mesa) – The city of La Mesa today revealed that before retiring, Police Chief Walt Vasquez terminated the employment of Officer Matt Dages. Dages was fired due to his actions during the controversial stop of Amaurie Johnson at a trolley station on May 27. Three days later, on May 30, a protest against La Mesa Police erupted into a night of looting, rioting and the burning down of three buildings.

Dages had accused Johnson, 23, of assault but the charge was dropped after body camera footage failed to substantiate Officer  Dages' version of the incident.  A video that went viral on social media prompted accusations of racial profiling by Dages.

WARNER SPRINGS SCHOOL BOARD RACE ENDS IN TIE, CAPPING OFF A WILD WEEK

By Miriam Raftery
 
Photo via CC by NC-ND:  a coin toss or other game of chance will determine the outcome in this race
 
Update December 16, 2020:  Gene Doxey won the coin toss -- and the seat on the Warner Sprngs Unified School District board.
 
December 9, 2020 (Warner Springs) – It’s been a wild week in Warner Springs.  First, an earthquake centered near the tiny mountain town jolted residents awake on Sunday morning. Then high winds prompted SDG&E to shut off power in the area for multiple days, forcing closure of schools in the Warner Springs Unified School District.
 
Now, an election for one of three seats on the school board has ended in a draw. Gene Doxey and Terry Cox each got 352 votes, tying for third place. There’s an important lesson to be learned for parents and students:  every vote counts!

TIME RUNNING OUT FOR VALLEY FIRE SURVIVORS TO APPLY FOR FEMA ASSISTANCE

By Donnie Ryan, County of San Diego Communications Office

Photo: Valley Fire, by Ron Kasper Dronesystems

December 9, 2020 (San Diego's East County) -There is only one week left for San Diego County homeowners and renters affected by the Valley Fire in September to apply for a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) grant, as the assistance program is scheduled to end Dec. 15.

The FEMA grant program is designed to help with serious disaster-related expenses not covered by insurance such as rent, home repair or replacement, medical or dental costs, transportation or other personal property losses.

PREVENT CHIMNEY FIRES

East County News Service

Photo: Creative Commons image via Bing

December 9, 2020 (Sacramento) – Home heating fires caused over 48,000 fires last year, killing 500 people and causing $1.1 billion in damages. Most of those tragedies resulted from chimney fires, according to the National Fire Protection Association. With power outages in winter weather, many residents in East County’s mountain and rural areas are relying on fireplaces to stay warm. Many others enjoy fireside family time during the holiday season.  But before you light the Yule log or hang stockings with care, in hopes that St. Nicholas soon will be there, you should take some simple safety precautions.

The California Office of Emergency Services has provided these tips from the Federal Emergency Management Agency on how to prevent chimney fires.

COUNTY LIBRARIES MOVE TO DOOR-SIDE SERVICE

By Gig Conaughton, County of San Diego Communications Office

Photo: Alpine Branch Library, courtesy Jonathan Goetz

December 9, 2020 (San Diego County) - With the state’s new COVID-19 Stay Home order in effect, the County of San Diego’s 33 libraries have moved to door-side service to help county residents practice social distancing and still enjoy all the library books, digital magazines, music, movies and other fare they love.

People can still check out all library materials and safely pick them up right at their library’s door. No appointments are necessary.

GROSSMONT HEALTHCARE DISTRICT ANNOUNCES MORE THAN $210,000 IN SCHOLARSHIPS FOR THOSE WORKING IN OR ENTERING THE HEALTHCARE FIELD

Source: Grossmont Healthcare District
 
Photo: The district’s pledge to award these scholarships assists students and professionals in their educational and professional focus on hands-on healthcare field studies.
 
December 9, 2020 (La Mesa) – The Grossmont Healthcare District (GHD) recently announced new scholarship opportunities worth more than $210,000 for local students and professionals working in or entering the healthcare field.
 
Each year, a portion of the overall agency grants and sponsorships budget has been allocated for scholarship programs offered to local students living, working, or attending school within GHD boundaries.
 
The programs are designed to meet the demand to maintain a robust and diverse local healthcare workforce, particularly in professions where shortages have been projected in the coming decade even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. The application deadline for all programs is February 12, 2021.

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