January 2018 Articles

January 2018 Articles

GONZALEZ FLETCHER BILL WOULD BAN GUN BUY-BACK PROGRAMS FROM GIVING VOUCHERS TO STORES THAT SELL GUNS

 

East County News Service

January 23, 2018 (San Diego) -- California State Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher (D-San Diego) introduced a bill this week that would prohibit public agencies during gun buy-back events from handing out taxpayer-funded vouchers to any store that sells firearms.


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CALIFORNIA INSURANCE COMMISSIONER WANTS INSURERS TO PASS FEDERAL TAX SAVINGS ON TO CUSTOMERS

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 23, 2018 (Sacramento) — The federal tax reform measure recently enacted reduces the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent.  California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones observes, “That means that nationally insurers will now be able to retain even more of policyholder premiums as profit. However, in California the prior approval process that applies to property and casualty insurance rates limits insurer profits.”


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GUHSD HONORS CIF CHAMPION TEAMS FROM HELIX, STEELE CANYON AND MONTE VISTA

 

Board also names West Hills Gymnasium for David C. Hunter

By Jonathan Goetz

Photo: Steele Canyon High School 2017 CIF-SDS Football Champions - Division II, 2017 CIF SoCal Regional Football Champions - Division 3-A and 2017 CIF State Champions – Division 3A, January 22, 2018

January 23, 2018 (El Cajon) - At Monday’s Grossmont Union High School District (GUHSD) Board Meeting, recognition was given to top sports teams for their victories and their “sportsmanlike” conduct.

Helix Charter, Monte Vista and Steele Canyon high schools all won CIF-SDS 2017 Champions, and West Hills Gymnasium is named in honor of David C. Hunter after a GUHSD vote, while the Steele Canyon 2017 SoCal Regional Football Champions and “West Hills Way” were accoladed as being “sportsmanlike.”


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SHUTDOWN AVERTED WITH SHORT-TERM FUNDING BILL THROUGH FEB. 8: CHILDREN’S HEALTHCARE FUNDING RESTORED, BUT NOT PROTECTION FOR YOUNG IMMIGRANTS

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 23, 2018 (Washington D.C.) – Both houses of Congress have approved a short-term spending bill to reopen the federal government, but only until February 8th

The compromise measure includes six years of funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program which had expired at year’s end.  But Democrats failed to win Dream Act protection from deportation for young immigrants or Dreamers, settling on a mere promise from Republican  Majority Mitch McConnell to address the issue in a separate immigration bill with no guarantee of passage.


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RAMONA PLUMBER-TURNED-AUTHOR DEBUTS NEW BOOK “ALL ABOUT WATER” FEB. 7

 

East County News Service

 

January 22, 2018 (Ramona) -- Ramona Author and local plumber Greg Chick will be at Unicorn Books and Gifts, 845 Main Street, Ramona, CA on Wednesday, February 7th from 4 to 6 p.m.  Chick will be available to sign copies and discuss his new book, All About Water: As Told by The Plumber Who's Seen It All.


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COLLEGE DISTRICT'S 14-YEAR RECORD OF SPOTLESS INDEPENDENT AUDITS REMAINS INTACT

 

Source: Grossmont Community College District

Photo:  An architectural rendering of Grossmont College’s new Performing and Visual Arts Center currently under construction

January 23, 2018 (El Cajon) -- Continuing a winning streak that would be envy of any sports franchise, the Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District’s excellent fiscal practices have once again received top marks from independent auditors for the 14th straight year.


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PHOTOS OF THE WEEK: WHITE PELICANS AND OSPREY AT LAKE JENNINGS

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 22, 2018 (Lake Jennings) – I went to Lake Jennings today hoping to see bald eagles recently spotted there. Instead, I found an osprey perched atop a eucalyptus tree. Nearby, a migratory white pelican in the lake was quickly joined by another pelican swooping in for a landing; I later saw several more.


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ANZA BORREGO DESERT STATE PARK RECEIVES INTERNATIONAL DARK SKIES DESIGNATION

 

 

Backcountry hidden pleasures:   Our guide to unique lodging adventures in San Diego’s beautiful backcountry

By Miriam Raftery, East County Magazine

Photos credited to ©Dennis Mammana/dennismammana.com

January 22, 2018 (Borrego Springs) – Night sky photographer Dennis Mammana made this announcement Friday on Facebook: “Proud to announce that our thousand-square-mile Anza-Borrego Desert State Park has just received its official designation as an International Dark Sky Park. That means that the Dark Sky Community of Borrego Springs is now completely surrounded by an official Dark Sky Park!”


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READER'S EDITORIAL: AN OPEN LETTER TO THE CITY OF EL CAJON ON THE FOOD SHARING BAN

 

By Raymond Lutz, Citizens Overnight

January 22, 2018 (El Cajon) - Greetings:

I am writing today about the failed policy to cite or arrest people who are sharing food at parks, and the related Hepatitis A outbreak.

El Cajon is getting a national reputation, and it isn’t a good one. I noticed a recent Facebook video on the subject – https://www.facebook.com/NowThisNews/videos/1778159485607501/ – received more than three million views. We can’t afford to get this type of publicity!


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HEARING ON LAKE JENNINGS MARKETPLACE BEFORE SUPERVISORS ON WEDNESDAY

 

 

Update January 24, 2018:  Supervisors voted 4-0 yesterday to approve this, with Supervisor Horn absent due to leaving early.

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Joe Brunetto, owner of Marechiaro's Italian Restaurant and Jack Shu, president of Cleveland National Forest Foundation, speak out against retail project proposed for land visible in background

January 22, 2018 (Lakeside)—San Diego County Supervisors will hold a hearing Wednesday on Lake Jennings Marketplace, a proposed retail strip shopping center on Olde Highway 80 in Lakeside.  The project by South Coast Development requires approval of an environmental impact report,  a General Plan amendment and rezoning  of residential land  to commercial.

But opponents say the developer earlier promised to build multi-family housing on the site, not a shopping center.  Cleveland National Forest Association (CNFF) and a local restaurant owner are heading up opposition to the project, saying what the community needs is housing, not more retail. 


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COURT REJECTS FEDERAL QUOTAS, RULES ANCHOVY OVERFISHED

 

By Suzanne Potter, California News Service

January 22, 2018 (Monterey) -- A conservation group is declaring victory, as a U.S. District Court judge in Northern California has ruled that the federal government's allowable catch for northern anchovies, set in November, is far too high.


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HELP SAVE AND RECONSTRUCT THE FORMER ALPINE MINE TRAIN EXHIBIT

 

Source: Campo Railroad Park & Museum

January 22, 2018 (Campo) -- The Campo Railroad Park & Museum has set up a donation page to help offset the costs of relocating and reconstructing the former Alpine train lovingly operated for children of all ages by Roy Athey. 

The Museum is committed to keeping the legacy alive in Campo with a dynamic exhibit of not only the train ride but also to include a faux mine complete with mining equipment to explain San Diego County’s many gold and precious metal mines.  Moving the train and setting it up was an unexpected gift and funds are simply not available today to put it back together. 


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USE OF FORCE AGAINST HELIX CHARTER HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT DRAWS PROTESTS

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 21, 2018 (La Mesa) – A video showing a La Mesa Police officer  slamming a handcuffed 17-year-old  female student at Helix Charter High School to the ground Friday afternoon has drawn over 17,000 views on social media, with a protest planned Monday morning on campus.


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READER’S EDITORIAL: AN OPEN LETTER TO GILLESPIE FIELD NEIGHBORS: A DAUNTING YEAR AHEAD WITH AIRPORT EXPANSION AND MORE

 

By Sue Strom, Advocates of Safe Airport Policies (ASAP)

January 21, 2018 (El Cajon) -- We hope your year is off to a happy and healthy start.  However, for those of us concerned about heavy local traffic, safety, noise, toxic air and lead overhead, with protections for homeowners few and far between, the new year is already daunting.

FAA approval for an increase in air traffic... a state of the art flight training center... the lengthening of the 27L training runway...the redesign and enlargement of the Bradley Street interchange off hwy 67... and the development of 9 five acre parcels of land for aviation usage called the Cajon Air Center are all coming together step by step over the next several years to form the perfect storm.


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READER’S EDITORIAL: KEEP ALPINE’S SMALL TOWN CHARM

 

An open letter to County Planning and Development Services by Mary Harris

January 21, 2018 (Alpine) -- I don't want future development projects in Alpine to include designs that are not consistent with keeping the small town charm of Alpine. We have already seen many developments in Alpine that make our town resemble our nearest city, El Cajon. I do not want to see conformity in designs that lack character. Examples of this that we have already been forced to accept are the Albertson's shopping center.Albertson's design shows no attempt to fit in to our towns historic rural feel, but instead looks like a typical store one would see in El Cajon. No effort was made to include creative facades, water features, or shade bearing trees.


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AZTECS WOMEN'S TENNIS NABS 6-1 VICTORY OVER UC RIVERSIDE

 

SDSU opens season with first dual match win

Source:  goaztecs.com

Photo courtesy goaztecs.com

January 21, 2018 (San Diego) - The San Diego State women’s tennis team opened its regular season Sunday at the Aztec Tennis Center where they put together an exciting 6-1 win over UC Riverside by claiming the doubles point and nabbing five of six singles matchups.


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PHOTOS OF THE WEEK: WOMEN’S MARCH 2018 SAN DIEGO

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 21, 2018 (San Diego) - An estimated 37,000 people took to the streets of downtown San Diego for the second annual women’s march protesting policies of the Trump administration, according to San Diego Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman.  Zimmerman tweeted photos of the large crowd, adding, “All of us thank you for saying hello throughout the rally and walk.”


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6.3 EARTHQUAKE IN GULF OF MEXICO

 

 

By Miriam Raftery, East County Magazine

 

January 21, 2018 (San Diego) -- A 6.3 earthquake struck in the Gulf of California at 8:17 a.m. approximately 48.4 miles North-Northeast of Loreto and 76.5 miles southwest of Pueblo Yaqui in Mexico, according to an alert sent by the U.S. Geological Survey.  The quake is not yet posted on the USGS quake events webpage, perhaps due to the furlough of federal employees during the government shutdown.

There have been several smaller quakes in the past week along the same fault line, including some farther north and one small tremor north of the border in Seeley. 


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SONORA STRIKES QUICK IN OVERTIME TO EDGE SOCKERS 12-11


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PLANNING COMMISSION RECOMMENDS APPROVAL OF COUNTY CLIMATE ACTION PLAN

 

The San Diego County Planning Commission voted 6-1 Thursday to recommend that the County’s Board of Supervisors approve the County’s revised Climate Action Plan, with some modifications.


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CALIFORNIA MAY BUCK CONGRESS WITH ITS OWN HEALTH INSURANCE REQUIREMENT

 

By Elizabeth Aguilera, CALmatters

Photo:  A hospital emergency room entrance. Photo by M.O. Stevens via Wikimedia Commons

January 20, 2018 (Sacramento) - With Congress ending the requirement that all Americans have health insurance, California leaders are preparing to counter that move by securing health care for as many residents as possible in a fortified state insurance exchange.


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CONTEST TO NAME WHITE TIGER CUB

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 20, 2018 (Alpine) – Lions, Tigers in Bears in Alpine is having a contest to name its newest resident:  a recently rescued white tiger cub. 

Here are the choices:


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FANITA RANCH DEVELOPERS REVAMP DESIGN TO BUILD MORE HOUSES AND OPEN SPACE

 

Traffic impacts remain key concerns

By Mike Allen

January 20, 2018 (Santee) -- HomeFed Corp., the developer of Fanita Ranch in north Santee, says its plan will preserve about three quarters of the 2,600-acre parcel as open space, while nearly doubling the number of houses it seeks to build on the site.


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READERS & WRITERS CALENDAR OF EVENTS JAN. 21 - FEB. 4, 2018

 

Copyright 2018 by Sam Warren

"Every man's life ends the same way and it is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguishes one man from another." — Ernest Hemingway

January 20, 2018 (San Diego) – Find the latest literary happenings across our region, from book signings to lectures and writers’ chats. 

CLICK TO SCROLL DOWN FOR A LIST OF BOOK EVENTS


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SDSU WOMEN'S HOOPS OUTLASTS NEW MEXICO 97-89

 

Fort, Murray finish with career-high point totals

Source:  goaztecs.com

Photo:  McKynzie Fort scored 23 of her career-high 32 points in the second half on Saturday vs. UNM.  Courtesy goaztecs.com

January 20, 2018 (San Diego) - The San Diego State women’s basketball team stormed back from an early 10-point deficit to produce its highest point total of the season in a wild 97-89 victory over New Mexico on Saturday in a Mountain West showdown at Steve Fisher Court.


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FEDERAL GOVERNMENT SHUTS DOWN AFTER SENATE FAILS TO PASS SPENDING BILL

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 20, 2018 (Washington D.C.) – Congress failed to pass a short-term spending bill by Friday night’s deadline that would have funded the federal government only until February 16th. As a result, the federal government is starting a shutdown effective today—the first anniversary of President Donald Trump’s inauguration.

The key sticking point was Republicans’ failure to protect Dreamers, or young people brought here as children of undocumented immigrants.  Trump cancelled former President Barack Obama’s executive order protecting Dreamers but gave Congress six months to pass legislation to protect them before deporting them. That timeline is nearly up. The shutdown also means no renewal of funding for the Children's Health Insurance Program, which has expired.


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DEER MOUSE IN SANTA YSABEL TESTS POSITIVE FOR HANTAVIRUS

 

A California deer mouse caught in routine trapping in the Santa Ysabel area has tested positive for the potentially deadly hantavirus, the first positive testing of the virus in San Diego County in 2018.


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SDSU SWIMMING & DIVING DEFEATS USD 151-131 TO FINISH REGULAR SEASON

 

Aztecs finish 2017-18 season 11-1 in dual meets

Source:  goaztecs.com

Photo courtesy goaztecs.com

January 19, 2018 (San Diego) - The San Diego State swimming and diving team defeated San Diego, 151-131, in a dual meet at the Aztec Aquaplex on Friday to conclude the regular season. The Aztecs finish the 2017-18 dual meet schedule with an 11-1 record and now look towards the 2018 Mountain West Championships on Feb. 14-16 in San Antonio, Texas.


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EDITORIAL: BORDER PATROL AGENTS SABOTAGING WATER BOTTLES IN DESERT SHOULD BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR DEATHS OF MIGRANTS

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 19, 2018 (San Diego’s East County) – A new report by humanitarian organizations  reveals that Border Patrol agents  have been systemically destroying water bottles left in desert areas for undocumented immigrants in the Arizona desert, condemning people to die of thirst.  While its unknown if this is occurring in California, this article in Britain’s The Guardian hit home for me in a visceral way, reminding me of an experience that brought me to tears.

On the 4th of July In 2008, I rode alongwith Border Angels founder Enrique Morones. We discovered sabotage of water bottles his group had left in rugged locations--all slashed open, empty. My article, Dying to Come to America, was published in our very first edition of East County Magazine. Morones vividly described what it is like for people to die of dehydration – hallucinating, throwing off clothes and shoes. We saw the signs of this torment – a woman’s high-heeled shoe cast aside, a man’s crumpled shirt.  The heat was triple digits.

I went along to learn about experiences faced by people so desperate to come to America that they rely on water left by benevolent strangers to survive. I learned that coyotes, or human traffickers, often lie to the migrants, telling them it's just a short walk to freedom; some women dressed up to meet their husbands are unaware of the dangers. I choked up, imagining their pain. My story included photos of those slashed water bottles and graves of people--some so very young--who died crossing East County's rugged border mountains in their failed quest to find freedom.


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LAMPLIGHTERS BRINGS US AGATHA CHRISTIE'S MOUSETRAP - THROUGH FEBRUARY 4

 

By Kathy Carpenter

Associate Reviewer sdtheatrereviews.com

Freelance Writer Splash Magazine

www.http://losangeles.splashmags.com/

January 19, 2018 (La Mesa) - If you are wondering whether you have seen this play as a movie, you have not. Mousetrap opened at the Ambassadors Theater in London on November 25, 1952 and never closed. The show has run over 65 years and 27,000 performances.


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