FORMER MANZANITA TRIBAL POLICE CHIEF ADMITS TO STEALING OVER $300,000 FROM LOCAL TRIBE BY SELLING FAKE BADGES

EAST COUNTY MAGAZINE WINS 11 AWARDS FROM SAN DIEGO PRESS CLUB’S 2021 EXCELLENCE IN JOURNALISM AWARDS

LEMON GROVE COUNCIL HOST WORKSHOP WITH RESIDENTS ON STREET REPAIR PRIORITIES

FAMILY ASKS HELP TO FIND MISSING MAN LAST SEEN IN KENSINGTON OVER TWO WEEKS AGO

SHAKESPEARE CALL AND RESPONSE: GLOBE FOR CALL COMES TO LEMON GROVE NOVEMBER 10

INTERVIEW WITH DR. WILLIAM TSENG, KAISER PERMANENTE’S VACCINE EXPERT, ON NEW COVID-19 BOOSTER SHOTS AND UPCOMING VACCINES FOR KIDS

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS OCT. 28 - NOV. 21

75TH ANNUAL MOTHER GOOSE PARADE WILL BE VIRTUAL NOV. 21

MARINES MAKE FIRST-EVER WATER DROPS IN ANZA-BORREGO DESERT TO SAVE BIGHORN SHEEP DURING DROUGHT

COVID-19 BOOSTERS OF ALL THREE VACCINES NOW APPROVED BY THE FDA; CONSUMERS CAN OPT FOR A BOOSTER OF A DIFFERENT VACCINE

LOCAL ARAB GROUP CALLS ON SUPERVISOR ANDERSON TO APOLOGIZE FOR REMARKS LINKING CAIR TO TERRORISM

A SHADY DEAL: LEMON GROVE JOINS TREE CITY USA

News

COMMUNITY CHAMPIONS CELEBRATED AT EAST COUNTY MAGAZINE’S AWARDS PRESENTATION

 

Photos:  Left: Secretary of State Dr. Shirley Weber with East County Magazine Editor Miriam Raftery.  Center: Slack Key Ohana.  Right: Jamul Casino Manager Mary Cheeks accepts Community Benefactor Award on behalf of Chairwoman Erica Pinto; Paul Gomez speaks at presentation of Briana Gomez Award for racial and social justice.

 By Miriam Raftery

October 1, 2021 (San Diego’s East County) – A sell-out crowd turned out on September 25th at Jamul Casino’s “The Rooftop” venue to honor East County Magazine’s Community Champions awards recipients.

The awards, presented during a tropical-themed Party in Paradise, included winners and honorable mentions in Healthcare, Public Safety, Environmental and Wildlife Protection, and Humanitarian categories, as well as a special Community Benefactor Award for Jamul’s tribal Chairwoman Erica Pinto.

In addition, the Briana Gomez Racial and Social Justice Award (named after ECM’s multicultural journalist who lost her life in a car accident) was presented to three recipients: Secretary of State Dr. Shirley Weber, Rev. Shane Harris with the People’s Association of Justice Advocates, and Buki Domingos, a founder of San Diego’s Racial Justice Coalition and an advocate for human trafficking survivors.

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BIDEN TAKES STEPS TO PROTECT DREAMERS, AIMS TO REOPEN DACA APPLICATIONS

By Miriam Raftery

Photo via San Diego Immigrants Rights Consortium

October 1, 2021 (Washington D.C.) – A federal district court judge in July declared the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program illegal in part because the Obama administration did not allow public comments by publishing the rule in the Federal Register. Judge Andre Hanen let stand the program for those already enrolled, but blocked new applications.

So now the Biden administration’s Department of Homeland Security has published the regulation, which is open for public comments until November 29.  The department has also appealed the court decision.

MARCH FOR REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS SATURDAY, LEGISLATION IN CONGRESS AIM TO PROTECT ABORTION ACCESS

By Miriam Raftery

October 1, 2021 (San Diego) – In the wake of restrictive laws and fears that the Supreme Court may overturn Roe v. Wade, a March for Reproductive Rights is slated to be held Saturday, October 2 at 10 a.m. at San Diego’s Waterfront Park. The march is one of 500 marches planned nationwide in the wake of restrictive laws in several states and fears that the Supreme Court may overturn Roe v. Wade. Details are available on the event’s Facebook page.

Numerous other states have enacted abortion restrictions and Missippi is reportedly preparing to ask the conservative majority on the Supreme Court to overturn Roe vs. Wade. These actions have galvanized both anti-abortion activists and abortion rights supporters.

Meanwhile, the House of Representatives has passed legislation that aims to protect most abortion access. Among San Diego’s Congressional delegation, Democrats Sra Jacobs, Mike Levin, Scott Peters, and Juan Vargas voted in favor, while Congressman Darrell Issa voted against.

SUPERVISORS CONSIDER CHANGE TO WITHDRAW PERMITS AFTER TWO YEARS OF INACTIVITY

Source: County of San Diego

September 30, 2021 (San Diego) - The County of San Diego has provided notice of intent to amend the County Zoning Ordinance and County Subdivision Ordinance to automatically withdraw inactive permits after two consecutive years of inactivity. The proposed ordinance amendments can be reviewed at https://www.sandiegocounty.gov/content/sdc/pds/Public_Review_Non-CEQA.html

EAST COUNTY CHAMBERS JOIN COALITION OPPOSING PROPOSED VEHICLE MILEAGE TAX

East County News Service

September 30, 2021 (San Diego) – The San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) is considering a proposal to tax drivers for every mile driven.  SANDAG leaders say the plan would help fund future transportation needs and encourage use of mass transit. But opponents say it unfairly penalizes motorists in areas such as East County, where many communities lack access to mass transit and drivers have no choice but to commute long distances to work, shop, or attend college.

D.A.’S HATE CRIMES PROSECUTOR SPEAKS OUT ON HATE CRIMES IN REGION AND EFFORTS TO COMBAT THEM

By Miriam Raftery

September 29, 2021 (La Mesa) – Hate crimes in California rose 30% in 2020 over 2019, when 1,015 hate crimes were reported, according to Leonard Trinh, lead hate crime prosecutor with the San Diego District Attorney. Hate crimes have been on the rise for several years, following a sharp spike after the election of Donald Trump as president.

NEWSOM SIGNS ELECTION REFORMS, INCLUDING TO MAKE MAILING BALLOTS TO ALL REGISTERED VOTERS PERMANENT

East County News Service

September 28, 2021 (Sacrament) -- Governor Gavin Newsom signed a package of legislation yesterday to increase voter access and strengthen integrity in elections, including a bill to send all registered voters a vote-by-mail ballot.  Voters will have options to mail-in ballots, drop off ballots at designated locations, or still vote at polling places if they prefer.

RAPID COVID-19 TESTS IN SHORT SUPPLY IN CALIFORNIA

By Kristen Hwang, CalMatters

CalMatters is a public interest journalism venture committed to explaining how California’s state Capitol works and why it matters

Photo:  Maria Jimenez swabs her daughter, Glendy Perez, 7, for a COVID-19 test at Canal Alliance in San Rafael on Sept. 25, 2021.

September 27, 2021 (San Diego) - Sarah Voit likes to keep 10 to 15 rapid test kits on hand in case any of the residents of the Family Emergency Shelter Coalition in Hayward need to be tested for COVID-19. They’ve had some infection scares, and the antigen tests — which return results in minutes — have been crucial to curbing the virus in the family shelter.

NEWSOM'S CALL NOW: CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE PASSES TOP 21 BILLS OF '21

By CalMatters staff, CalMatters

Photo:  Andre m., CC SA 3.0

CalMatters is a public interest journalism venture committed to explaining how California’s state Capitol works and why it matters

September 24, 2021 (Sacramento) - The second year of the coronavirus pandemic in California was shaped by two political undercurrents at the state Capitol: a budget awash with cash, thanks to a booming stock market and federal aid, and a looming recall election asking voters to throw Gov. Gavin Newsom out of office.  

PASSAGES: JULIAN NEWS PUBLISHER MICHAEL HART LOSES BATTLE TO CANCER

By Miriam Raftery

September 22, 2021 (Julian) – Michael Jon Hart, long-time publisher of the Julian News and past president of the San Diego County Umpires Association, died September 14 after battling brain and lung cancer. His wife, Michelle Harvey, confirmed Hart’s passing on her Facebook page.

“Mike and I have so many friends,” Harvey posted. “I am glad that we spent our lives working to help others.”

The newspaper has been for sale for months; Hart’s death leaves the future of Julian’s newspaper in limbo.  A newspaper listing in July asked $300,000 for the publication, which was described as “highly profitable” despite pandemic lockdowns.

Hart and Harvey acquired the independent weekly newspaper on July 4, 2004; the paper has been the voice of Julian, CA since 1984. It’s been a labor of love for Hart, who covered major news stories ranging from the 2007 Witch Creek Fire that ravaged the region to controversies involved the county’s acquisition of Julian’s formerly all-volunteer fire department. Hart sometimes took heat for his coverage but took pride in covering all sides of community issues, according to Harvey.

NOT VACCINATED? NEW SURVEY FINDS YOU MAY HAVE TROUBLE GETTING HIRED

National survey by ResumeBuilder finds 63% of hiring managers prefer candidates who list vaccine status—and many reject unvaccinated applicants

Source:  ResumeBuilder.com

September 22, 2021 (Seattle, Wash.) – If you’re looking for a job, you may want to roll up your sleeve and get the “jab” first.  A nationwide survey of 1,250 conducted by  ResumeBuilder.com, a resource for professional resume templates, found that one-third of hiring manages will ignore resumes without a COVID-19 vaccine status – and 63% say they prefer candidates who list vaccine status on their resumes.  A growing number of companies are now requiring vaccines and/or giving first preference in hiring to those job-seekers who are fully vaccinated.

OCOTILLO WIND TURBINE COLLAPSES--AGAIN

By Henri Migala and Miriam Raftery

Photos courtesy of Ocotillo Wind Turbine Destruction on Facebook

September 20, 2021 (Ocotillo) – Residents in Ocotillo are voicing concerns after yet another wind turbine collapse at the Ocotillo Wind Energy facility. There were no injuries or damage to other structures when the 300-foot-tall turbine crashed to the desert floor at the trouble-prone facility on Thursday, September 16. But residents are raising serious questions over public safety at the site, which produces energy to SDG&E to power the San Diego region.

STEVEN PRUSKY, RESCUE TASK FORCE, SPEAKS OUT ON COORDINATOR TRAPPED IN AFGHANISTAN WITH HIS FAMILY

 

September 19, 2021 (San Diego) -- Rescue Task Force (RTF), a nonprofit founded in San Diego's East County and now headquartered in Temecula, provides disaster relief response and medical aid around the world.  They also started schools for girls and women in Afghanistan. But since the U.S. troop withdrawal and Taliban takeover, the RTF team has had to close its schools, dimming hopes of students under the Taliban's brutal regime and endangering the lives of RTF's coordinator and his family, who remain trapped and in hiding inside Afghanistan.

East County Magazine editor Miriam Raftery today interviewed Steven Prusky, a director with Rescue Task Force, on the Afghanistan situation as well as other projects around the world in which RTF is currently involved ranging from water purification to disaster relief and more.

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SEQUOIA NATIONAL PARK WRAPS GIANT TREES, STRUCTURES IN FOIL AS FLAMES APPROACH

By Miriam Raftery

September 18, 2021 (Sequoia National Park) – Two wildfires, the Colony and Paradise fires, have merged into one dubbed the KNP Complex Fire. Estimated at 18,000 acres, the blaze has been burning for a week inside Sequoia National Park and has now reached the edge of a historic grove of ancient giant redwoods. 

I-8/CRESTWOOD ROAD RAMP SIX-WEEK CLOSURE NEAR GOLDEN ACORN CASINO BEGINS MONDAY

Source: Caltrans

September 17, 2021 (San Diego’s East County) -- Caltrans crews anticipate closures at Interstate 8 (I-8) and Crestwood Road for four to six weeks beginning Monday to replace guardrail systems. The work will require full closures of the westbound I-8/Crestwood Road on-ramp and the eastbound I-8/Crestwood Road off-ramp near the Golden Acorn Casino, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. through early November. Advance notification signs have been placed to inform motorists about the closures. See map below for closure areas.

SUPERVISORS COOK UP RECIPE FOR SMALL HOME KITCHEN BUSINESSES

East County News Service

Image Credit: Shutterstock 

 

September 15, 2021 (San Diego) -- The County Board of Supervisors voted today to move forward with plans to legalize microenterprise home kitchen operations, or MEHKOs. MEHKOs are defined by California law as a small retail food facility, operated from a private home.

MORE AMERICANS FREED FROM AFGHANISTAN, ISSA’S OFFICE CONFIRMS

San Diego couple, both in their 80s, repeatedly blocked by the Taliban

East County News Service

September 15, 2021 (San Diego) - Congressman Darrell Issa (R-San Diego) announced today that his office has facilitated the release of two more American citizens from Afghanistan. The Congressman’s constituents, a couple in their 80s, are on their way home and have officially left Kabul.

NEWSOM WINS BIG: RECALL FAILING BY 2 TO 1 MARGIN

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Gavin Newsom earlier today, via his Twitter feed

September 14, 2021 (San Diego) – Major networks including CNN, CBS and NBC have called California’s gubernatorial recall election, with voters statewide resoundingly rejecting efforts to recall Governor Gavin Newsom. As of 8:30 p.m., the recall is failing by a 67.8% “no” to 32.1% “yes” margin with more than half of all votes tallied.

The recall is losing by wide margins even in conservative counties such as Orange, Riverside, and San Bernadino. In San Diego County, early results show 60.63% voted against recalling Newsom, with 39.37% in favor of the ouster effort.

PEDESTRIAN KILLED BY MERCEDES IN SPRING VALLEY

East County News Service

September 14, 2021 (Spring Valley) – A 60-year-old man died at the scene after being struck by a Mercedes Benz C350 last night in Spring Valley at 9:42 p.m. last night.  The Mercedes was traveling west on Jamacha Blvd. just west of Gillespie Drive when it struck the pedestrian.

FEDERAL PANDEMIC PROGRAM GIVES DISCOUNTS ON INTERNET AND LAPTOPS FOR SENIORS: EXTRA BENEFITS FOR TRIBAL MEMBERS

By Suzanne Potter, California News Service

September 12, 2021 (Sacramento) --  Advocates for older Americans are working to spread the word about a federal program to cut people's internet bills.

The Emergency Broadband Benefit program gives people who qualify a $50 credit on their monthly internet bill and a $100 voucher toward a laptop or other mobile device.

Joe Garbanzos, state president for AARP California, said for tribal communities the program goes further, providing a $75 subsidy per month.

COUNTY GRANTS NOW AVAILABLE TO IMPROVE NEIGHBORHOODS, COMMUNITIES

 

playground structures in a park

The County is now accepting proposals for grants to improve neighborhoods and communities in San Diego’s unincorporated area.

Funding for the projects comes from the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program, which provides an annual grant to County department of Housing and Community Development Services.

The purpose of the grant is to allow residents and nonprofits to submit projects that benefit low- to moderate-income residents if the project aligns with the County’s Consolidated Plan. Grant applications for the 2022-2023 CDBG awards are now open and will be accepted through Nov. 1, 2021 at 5 p.m.

FACT-CHECKING RECALL CLAIMS: MASKS, VACCINES, CLIMATE CHANGE AND MORE

By Sameea Kamal, CalMatters

CalMatters is a public interest journalism venture committed to explaining how California’s state Capitol works and why it matters

Photo:  John Cox showed off Tag the bear on Harbor Island during his campaign. Photo by Chris Stone

September 12, 2021 (San Diego) - Everyone’s entitled to their own opinions, but not to their own facts.

That holds true for politicians, including the candidates in California’s Sept. 14 recall election and Gov. Gavin Newsom. Campaigning during a resurgent COVID-19 pandemic and deadly, unprecedented wildfires, their approaches to the state’s problems can vary.

GROUNDBREAKING REPORT ON SAN DIEGO’S OLDER ADULT HOMELESS RELEASES FINDINGS, MAKES RECOMMENDATIONS

By Gayle Lynn Falkenthal

September 11, 2021 (San Diego) -- One in four of San Diego’s homeless adults is over the age of 55. More than 40% are experiencing homelessness for the first time in their lives.

PSYCHEDELIC MUSHROOM LAB, HASH OIL AND HAZARDOUS CHEMICALS FOUND IN WARRANT SEARCH AT WARNER SPRINGS SITE

Illegal drugs likely destined for unlicensed marijuana dispensaries in region, investigators believe

By Miriam Raftery

 

Photo: hallucinogenic mushrooms by Arp; Image Number 6514 at Mushroom Observer, a source for mycological images. CC-by SA 3.0 via Wikimedia.

 

September 11, 2021 (Warner Springs) – A San Diego County Sheriff’s warrant search related to a Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) extraction lab early Friday morning at 28519 Highway 79 in Warner Springs also found a psilocybin (psychedelic mushroom) lab. 

LOCAL RESIDENTS SHARE MEMORIES OF SEPTEMBER 11, 2001

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: World Trade Center burning on September 11, 2001; screenshot from video taken by San Diego County resident Mar Tomic

September 11, 2021 (San Diego) – Twenty years after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks claimed thousands of lives in New York, Washington D.C. and  Pennsylvania,  San Diego County residents shared their memories of the tragedy in response to inquiries from East County Magazine and on social media.

Sheriff Bill Gore posted on Twitter, “The images are seared into our memories. We watched in disbelief as passenger planes turned into weapons. It was a time of great pain and heroism. Honor guard members reflect on 9/11 and how it transformed their purpose into a life of service. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yLuKaoVAH1M “  Many of those in the honor guard spoke of how the attacks inspired them to protect their country.

Others reacted differently. Local resident Mar Tomic was in New York City to witness first hand the worst terrorist attack on U.S. soil.  “I had a chance to see it on TV but also from my apartment in Brooklyn. I took my camera and wandered the streets for many days after the tragedy. I edited this video 7 days after 9.11.”  View video:  https://vimeo.com/29079284.   Tomic’s video captured not only the chaos and sorrow in the days following the attacks, but at a time when the nation was gearing up for war to retaliate against Afghanistan for harboring Al Qaeda leader bin Laden, Tomic’s footage also showed some New Yorker’s rallying for peace  even amid candlelight vigils for those lost.

SUPERVISOR ANDERSON ASKS PUBLIC TO TAKE SURVEY ON IMPROVING COUNTY TRANSPARENCY

By Miriam Raftery

September 11, 2021 (San Diego’s East County) -- For his first initiative as County Supervisor, East County’s representative Joel Anderson established the Transparency Subcommittee to solicit ideas from the public to improve access and participation with their County government. At a recent hearing, over 60 people attended and hundreds sent in comments with “great suggestions to ensure the public’s interest is best served,” says Anderson.

He adds,  “I’d love your feedback on the input we have heard so far. Please take this survey and let me know which ideas you support. There’s also room for you to write in your own ideas if you don’t see them listed in the survey,” says Anderson.

Click here to take the survey.

CALIFORNIA GOVERNOR’S OFFICE LAUNCHES 9/11 DAY OF SERVICE

East County News Service

Sign up for #CaliforniansForAll to serve and volunteer in your community

September 11, 2021 (Sacramento) – The 20th anniversary of September 11th - an important time for us to reflect, says Josh Fryday, Chief Services Officer for Governor Gavin Newsom.  Fryday is heading up a statewide day of service for Californians to volunteer, a model backed by the Legislature and Governor as a model to build back trust and create a culture of service for our communities.

CUYAMACA COLLEGE PRESENTS REMEMBRANCE OF 9/11 ATTACKS

Source: Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District

September 10, 2021 (El Cajon) -- On a cloudless morning with the San Miguel Fire & Rescue’s massive 70-foot flag serving as a backdrop, the Cuyamaca College campus community and East County firefighters gathered Friday for an early commemoration of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

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