SDSU MEN'S BASKETBALL IS A MOUNTAIN WEST CHAMP ONCE AGAIN

ROCK CHURCH GIVING AWAY FREE FOOD TO FAMLIES IN NEED N EL CAJON, CITY HEIGHTS AND SAN MARCOS

COUNTY REPORTS 376 NEW VIRUS CASES AS AVAILABLE VACCINE DOSES RISE TO OVER 100,000

AFTER FDA APPROVES JOHNSON & JOHNSON COVID-19 VACCINE, BIDEN INVOKES DEFENSE PRODUCTION ACT TO SPEED UP MANUFACTURING

COUNTY OPENS EMERGENCY RENTAL AND UTILITY AID: TENANTS AND LANDLORDS HAVE THREE WEEKS TO APPLY

SANTEE FIRE DEPARTMENT NEW ISO RATING IS NOW IN EFFECT AND COULD LOWER YOUR INSURANCE RATES

COUNTY RELEASES ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS FOR NEW COVID-19 VACCINATION GROUPS

SANTEE DELAYS RESPONSE ON COUNTY NEEDLE EXCHANGE PROGRAM, AMENDS CURRENT FISCAL YEAR BUDGET UPWARDS

HOUSE PASSES COVID RELIEF BILL; MEASURE ADVANCES TO SENATE

BODY OF CHRISTOPHER PAUL PARKHURST, MISSING SINCE DEC. 23, FOUND IN DULZURA

SAN DIEGO COUNTY TO START VACCINATING TEACHERS, OTHER ESSENTIAL WORKERS ON SATURDAY

BIDEN OPENS NEW FUNDING ROUND FOR SMALL BUSINESSES WITH UNDER 20 EMPLOYEES AND SELF-EMPLOYED WORKERS: 2-WEEK APPLICATION PERIOD STARTS FEB. 24

DA HOSTS CRIMINAL RECORD RELIEF CLINIC JAN. 29

East County News Service

 

January 27, 2021 (San Diego) – San Diego District Attorney Summer Stephan’s office will hold a Criminal Record Relief Clinic on January 29 from 10 a.m. - 11:30 a.m..  You can learn about options for clearing a person's criminal record, creating a fresh start that can make it easier to find employment in the future. 

The event will be virtual and free.  Register to attend here.

PHOTO OF THE MONTH: COOL POOL

East County News Service

January 27, 2021 (Descanso) – How cold was it this week in East County? Cold enough to freeze over a swimming pool in Descanso.  Thanks to Allen Walker Entertainment for sending in this startling image of lawn chairs perched atop the iced-over pool that resembles an outdoor skating rink.

Readers, please send us your winter pics to editor@eastcountymagazine.org

MISSING TEEN, 13, LAST SEEN ON SCOOTER IN VISTA

 

UPDATE:  THE VISTA TEEN HAS BEEN REUNITED WITH HER FAMILY AS OF TODAY, JAN. 28, 2021.

Source:  San Diego County Sheriff

January 27, 2021 (Vista) -- The Vista Sheriff's Station wants your help in locating a missing teenager who ran away from home. Natalie Munoz, 13, was last seen just after 2:00 p.m January 26th in the 1900 block of Yettford Road in Vista.  Her family told deputies she ran away from home after she got into an argument with her father.  Munoz does not have a history of running away and did not take a cell phone with her.  It is not known where she may be headed.

CARVANA TO BUILD A VENDING MACHINE SALES ROOM TOWER IN ESCONDIDO

By Rebecca Jefferis Williamson

(Photo courtesy of Carvana, Inc.) 

Jan. 24, 2021 (Escondido) -- Carvana, Inc., a used car online dealership, will be expanding with a vending machine style car tower in Escondido. Last fall zoning was approved for the unique car “sales room” by city officials. 

Most associate vending machines with candy and chips but the proposed tower, at Hale Avenue and Tulip Street in Escondido, will feature cars and to some, it is the new school way of car shopping. The vending machine used car “lot” will be a 75-foot-tower and hold 32 cars, on eight levels, according to Carvana officials. 

The company already has vending machines in other locations in the country. This will be the their third location in California. Currently, Carvana has towers in Ontario and Westminster.  

The estimated opening date is late 2021 or early 2022. The Escondido City Council approved zoning changes last fall that facilitated the project.

ADVANCING HEALTHY COMMUNITIES: LEGALIZED MARIJUANA’S UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES

By David R. Shorey, East County Program Manager, Institute for Public Strategies

 

January 27, 2021 (San Diego’s East County) -- In June of last year, Sheriff’s deputies raided six illegal cannabis dispensaries in Lakeside, unincorporated El Cajon, and parts of the City of San Diego seizing more than $221,000 in cash, six firearms and more than 1,000 pounds of marijuana, marijuana edibles and concentrated cannabis. 

SAN DIEGO REPORTS 1,434 COVID CASES, 46 DEATHS AS POSITIVE TESTING RATE TRENDS DOWN

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

Photo:  A man is tested for coronavirus at a drive-up site. Courtesy County News Center

January 27, 2021 (San Diego) - San Diego County public health officials reported 1,434 new COVID-19 cases and 46 more deaths Tuesday as the positive-test rate continue to trend down.

BIDEN BOOSTS COVID VACCINE PRODUCTION, WILL REOPEN ACA ENROLLMENT

By Miriam Raftery

January 27, 2021 (Washington D.C.) – President Joe Biden’s national strategy to combat COVID-19, includes orders to purchase 200 million more vaccine doses from Pfizer and Moderna, boosting supply to 600 million. He also announced ramped up distribution of vaccines by next week to states and tribal governments.

This week he also plans to sign an executive order to reopen open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act health insurance policies, since so many out of work Americans have lost healthcare during the pandemic. Biden also plans to make it easier for low-income people to join Medicaid by rolling back certain restrictions imposed by the Trump administration, CNN reports.

In addition, Biden has ordered increased production of the vaccines  with the expectation that all of the 368 million Americans who want to be vaccinated will have vaccines available this spring, a pace dramatically accelerated over the prior administration both in numbers of vaccines available and pace of distribution.

MISSING OFF-ROAD MOTORCYCLIST FOUND IN BORREGO SPRINGS

East County News Service

January 26, 2021 (Borrego Springs) -- A man who went missing while off-roading in Borrego Springs over the weekend has been found safe and will soon be reunited with his family, the Sheriff’s Department reports.

James Richard Rawlins III, 55, was spotted just after 7:00 a.m. this morning by drivers along Highway 78 near the Desert Ironwood Resort in Borrego Springs.  Rawlins was in good spirits and taken to a medical facility in Brawley, according to a press release from the Sheriff’s department, which adds, “Once he gets a clean bill of health, Rawlins will be reunited with his family”.

SAN DIEGO GO RED FOR WOMEN EFFORT RAISES AWARENESS AND FUNDS FOR HEART DISEASE FEB. 5-26

Source: Mission Fed Credit Union

January 26, 2021 (San Diego) -- Mission Fed Credit Union is proud to be a local supporter of the San Diego Division of American Heart Association’s (AHA), “San Diego Go Red for Women,” campaign.  Go Red for Women began January 18, 2021, includes National Wear Red Day on February 5th, and runs through February 26, 2021, concluding with a much anticipated Go Red for Women Digital Experience. 

SEARCH UNDERWAY IN NORTH COUNTY FOR MISSING MAN AT RISK IN ESCONDIDO

Source: San Diego Sheriff
 
 
January 27, 201 (Escondido) - Be on the lookout for a missing person at-risk in the North County.   Steve Mesa Turrey was reported missing to the San Marcos Sheriff's Station on Wednesday, January 27th.  He was last seen walking away from the All Seasons RV Park in Escondido on Tuesday, January 26th around 11:00 p.m. 

INVASIVE WEEVILS KILLING PALM TREES

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photos: UC Riverside: Top row, healthy palms. Bottom row, infested palms.

January 26, 2021 (San Diego) – The invasive South American palm weevil has destroyed an estimated 10,000 palm trees in our region, according to researcher Mark Hoddle at the University of California, Riverside.  Locally, it’s been found in El Cajon, Bonita, San Diego and South Bay communities. Left untreated, it will ultimately kill the trees best known for lining waterfronts along some of San Diego’s most prominent destinations.

GOING UNDERGROUND: CALIFORNIA BUSINESS OPERATES IN SECRET AMID PANDEMIC RESTRICTIONS

By Kate Cimini, CalMatters

CalMatters is an independent public interest journalism venture covering California state politics and government.

Photo:  John adjusts the covers on his massage table. Photo by Ayrton Ostly, The Salinas Californian

January 25, 2021 (Salinas) - When the COVID-19 pandemic shut down his Bay Area region massage business, John went 93 days without income.  

In March, John and his business partner, Dee, packed away their massage tables and locked up their office. (Both John and Dee are going by pseudonyms for fear of legal repercussions.) 

STATE LIFTS STAY-HOME ORDER: SOME BUSINESSES CAN REOPEN

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Creative Commons via Bing

January 25, 2021 (San Diego) – At a press conference this afternoon, San Diego County leaders announced changes to allow some businesses to reopen after the state lifted a regional stay-home order. The change comes due to a four-week regional projection that ICU capacity will rise above 15%.  Our County is now back in the purple tier, but with some modifications.

ATTORNEY GENERAL BECERRA ESTABLISHES BUREAU OF DISABILITY RIGHTS

Bureau to protect Californians with disabilities from discrimination and other harms

Source:  California Department of Justice

January 25, 2021 (Sacramento) - California Attorney General Xavier Becerra today announced the establishment of the Bureau of Disability Rights (Bureau) within the Civil Rights Enforcement Section (Section) of the California Department of Justice. The Bureau will focus on matters that seek to ensure that the rights of persons with disabilities are advanced through specific investigations and litigation. The Bureau will also expand on the Section's work to vindicate the rights of persons with disabilities on issues including discrimination in education, healthcare, employment, access to public services, and with regard to law enforcement involvement. 

DETECTIVES ASK HELP TO FIND POTRERO MAN MISSING SINCE DEC. 23

East County News Service
 
January 24, 2021 (Potrero) – The San Diego Sheriff’s Department seeks public help to find Christopher Paul Parkhurst, who has been missing for over a month.  Parkhurst, 47, was last seen by an acquaintance in the 23000 block of Horizon View Drive in Potrero on December 23. His family has not seen or heard from him since then.  The famliy notified the Sheriff's Dept. January 3, according to the Sheriff's department. 
 
"Deputies have conducted a limited search of the area for Parkhurst, but the terrain in the area is rugged and expansive," says Lt. Thomas Siever. "This morning, about 80 volunteers with Sheriff's Search and Rescue, Homicide detectives, and deputies assigned to the Campo Substation conducted an exhaustive search of a large area around Horizon View Drive. Parkhurst was not located and his whereabouts is still unknown."
 
Parkhurst is 5’5” tall, weighs 120 pounds and has blond hair and blue eyes.  He has sleeve tattoos and the word “Campo” tattooed on his stomach.According to a Facebook page, Help Find Christopher Paul Parkhurst, he is at medical risk due to recently having a stroke and being diabetic.

STAR TREK ACTOR BEAMS INTO LA MESA COUNCIL MEETING TUESDAY TO HONOR JAPANESE-AMERICAN CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST FRED KOREMATSU

By Miriam Raftery

January 24, 2021 (La Mesa) – This Tuesday, January 26th, the city of La Mesa will proclaim January 30th as Fred Korematsu Day of Civil Liberties. The proclamation honors the late civil rights activist, who fought for the rights and freedoms of Japanese-Americans sent to internment camps during World War II.

During a 6 p.m. City Council meeting held via Zoom, special guests beaming in remotely will include Korematsu’s daughter, Dr. Karen Korematsu, Founder and Executive Director of the Fred T. Korematsu Institute as well as actor George Takei, best known for portraying Lieutenant Hikaru Sulu (right) in the original Star Trek TV series and later, Captain Sulu in Star Trek: Voyager. 

SDSU WOMEN'S BASKETBALL UPENDED BY AIR FORCE 58-55

Source:  goaztecs.com

Photo courtesy goaztecs.com

January 24, 2021 (San Diego) - The San Diego State women’s basketball team (5-8, 3-4) fell to Air Force (4-9, 2-6) Sunday afternoon inside Viejas Arena. The Aztecs led by as much as 10 points in the fourth quarter but saw the Falcons finish the game on a 19-6 run.

SDSU MEN'S BASKETBALL: AZTECS BOMB AIR FORCE 98-61

Source:  goaztecs.com

Photo courtesy goaztecs.com

January 22, 2021 (Colorado Springs) -  Nearly six minutes into the first half, the San Diego State men's basketball team trailed 6-5 at Air Force, but then ignited the afterburners and went on a 47-10 run to end the half en route to a 98-61 victory over the Falcons on Friday night in Clune Arena.

EL CAJON POLICE ARREST MAN WITH ILLEGAL WEAPONS CACHE

By Miriam Raftery

January 22, 2021 (El Cajon) – El Cajon Police officers conducting a traffic stop in the 1200 block of Main Street led to the arrest of Neil Alequin, 37, of El Cajon on numerous charges of possessing illegal weapons and drugs.

A probation search of his vehicle and residence found numerous weapons including six illegally possessed handguns (several loaded), illegal high-capacity magazines, various calibers of ammunition, parts and machining equipment used to assemble illegal firearms, several stun guns, brass knuckles, and a pistol suppressor. The search also found narcotics.

HOW THE PANDEMIC LED TO HORSES AND SECOND ACTS

By Mimi Pollack
 
January 22, 2021 (El Cajon) -- 2020 was a strange, difficult, and even transformative year for so many. In my case, the pandemic made me feel very mortal and I decided to start checking things off my “bucket list.” First up was going back to horseback riding after 20 years of not riding or being in the horse world.

MAN ARRESTED FOR ATTEMPTED MURDER; WOMAN ASSAULTED WITH WRENCH IN EL CAJON

By Miriam Raftery

January 22, 2021 (El Cajon) – A man who allegedly assaulted a woman walking in El Cajon by striking her in the head with a wrench has been arrested and charged with attempted murder.

On January 20 at 10:37 a.m., El Cajon Police officers and paramedics responded to a report of assault with a deadly weapon in the 800 block of Fletcher Parkway. The suspect,  Christian Fernando Graciano, fled on foot and was arrested nearby.

SANDAG ADOPTS RESOLUTION TO INCREASE BROADBAND ACCESS AMID GROWING NEED DURING PANDEMIC

Regional taskforce formed to bridge the digital divide gap in the San Diego region

Source:  SANDAG

Photo: Creative Commons by SA

January 22, 2021 (San Diego) - At its meeting Friday, the SANDAG Board of Directors adopted a resolution to support increased broadband access throughout the region to help bridge the digital divide – the gap that exists between those with and without access to information and communications technology such as broadband, computers, and smart phones. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the issues caused by the digital divide, limiting people’s ability to work from home or participate in virtual classroom settings.

CHP ISSUES "SNOW ETIQUETTE" GUIDELINES

East County News Service

File photo by Billy Ortiz

January 22, 2021 (San Diego’s East County) -- With heavy snow forecast in our local mountains over the next several days, the California Highway Patrol asks the public to practice good “snow etiquette” when visiting the Mount Laguna/Julian area.

The advisory aims to protect public safety, assure that travelers have chains or snow tires, respect private property, and help keep our mountain areas clean for residents. Law enforcement will be present enforcing these guidelines and laws.

HUMBERT CABRERA FACES POSSIBLE OUSTER OFF EL CAJON PLANNING COMMISSION

By Miriam Raftery

January 22, 2021 (El Cajon) – The January 26 agenda for the El Cajon City Council includes a proposal to remove Planning Commissioner Humbert Cabrera over alleged conflicts of interest and ethical concerns.

According to a report by Mayor Bill Wells and Mayor Pro Tem Gary Kendrick, the City Council has received complaints about Cabrera in emails and public comments.  The report raises three main areas of concern.

HEAVY SNOWFALL FORECAST FOR MOUNTAINS, POSSIBLE FLOODING IN URBAN AREAS

File photo: San Diego County snow plow in the Laguna mountains

January 22, 2021 (San Diego’s East County) – Two cold winter storms are forecast to sweep into our region.  The first will bring widespread rain this weekend with snow at higher elevations. The second, a much stronger storm, is forecast to bring heavy rains and possible urban flooding, also dropping the snow level down to below 3,000 feet in mountain and high desert areas Monday and Tuesday.

The first storm Friday night and Saturday could bring 1 to 5 inches of snow and possible thunderstorms. Storm two could bring up to 10 inches of snow in the mountains as well as heavy rainfall downpours in urban areas. Both storms will also bring gusty southwest winds and near-gale force winds over coastal waters as well as high surf and hazardous marine conditions.

AMERICA'S FINEST CITY: HISTORY RECALLED IN SAN DIEGO MEMORIES III

 

San Diego Memories III: A Time Of Change – The 1960s and 1970s, by The San Diego Union-Tribune (Pediment Publishing, 2020, 176 pages).

Book Review by Dennis Moore

January 21, 2021 (San Diego) - Roger Showley, who provided the chapter introductions and captions, as well as the foreword to this fantastic book, San Diego Memories III: A Time of Change – The 1960s and 1970s, puts this book in perspective by stating: “This pictorial history of San Diego in the tumultuous 1960s and 70s is coming out at an extraordinary time of a pandemic, when life seems just as uncertain and unpredictable as it was 50 years earlier. A generation that came of age back then thought it would change the world, that no one over 30 could be trusted. They reveled in sex, drugs, and rock and roll, led civil rights marches, demonstrated against the Vietnam War, and were drafted to fight in it. In many ways the now – aging Baby Boomers in their 60s and 70s are seeing another social upheaval led by their children and grandchildren who are ready to throw out the norms and follow a different path.”

BIDEN-HARRIS INAUGURATION BRINGS CHANGE, CALLS FOR UNITY AND HISTORIC FIRSTS

By Miriam Raftery

Photos: screenshots via C-Span

January 21, 2021 (Washington D.C.) – Under the heaviest security since the Civil War, one week after a violent attack on our nation’s Capitol, President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris were sworn into office on January 20.

It was a day of historic firsts. Harris is the first woman, first African-American and first Asian-American to become Vice President. Her husband, who is Jewish,became First Gentleman. The nation’s youngest Poet Laureate, 22-year-old Amanda Gorman, delivered a powerful rendition of her poem, “The Hill We Climb”, a message of unity, healing and courage written after she witnessed the insurrection at the Capitol.

Chief Justice John Roberts swore in President Biden. In his inaugural speech, Biden said the day represents “A day of history and hope” adding, “Democracy has prevailed.   So now on this hallowed ground where just days ago violence sought to shake this Capitol’s very foundation, we come together as one nation, under God, indivisible, to carry out the peaceful transfer of power as we have for more than two centuries.”

GROUPS “FLOORED” BY BIDEN IMMIGRATION PROPOSAL

By Suzanne Potter, California News Service

Photo: Creative Commons by SA

January 20, 2021 (Sacramento) -- On his first day in office, President Joe Biden is pressing for bold immigration reform, proposing a path to citizenship for an estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants.

The proposal would apply to people who have a clean criminal record and were in the United States before Jan. 1. If approved, this would be the first so-called "mass legalization" since 1986, during the Reagan administration.

Carlos Guevara, associate director for immigration policy for the group Unidos US, said there's a lot of pent-up demand for change in the immigration system.

IN FIRST 24 HOURS AS PRESIDENT, BIDEN TAKES DOZENS OF MAJOR ACTIONS

By Miriam Raftery

January 21, 2021 (Washington D.C.) – Within hours after his inauguration, President Joe Biden has issued dozens of executive orders, announced ambitious efforts to combat the coronavirus, bring relief to struggling Americans including renters and students with loans, bring aid to local governments, fight climate change, reunite families separated at the border, and more. He also fired three Trump administration officials who had sought to undermine their agencies’ missions. In addition, he announced daily themes for his first month in office.

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