June 23, 2019 (Sacramento) --- Starting July 1st, California’s tax on gasoline will rise to over 60 cents per gallon, up from 55.2 cents currently, as a result of legislation signed by former Governor Jerry Brown. That will make the state’s gas tax the highest in the U.S., so you may want to fill your tank before the end of June.
June 23, 2019 (Santee) -- The board for the Padre Dam Municipal Water District has voted unanimously for a financing package that clearly outlines the costs to each of the four agencies building the East County Advanced Water Purification Project.
June 22, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) – The city of San Diego ranked second worst in the nation for rent hikes on a one-bedroom apartment in 2018, at 17% with an average rent of $2,300, according to Rent.com. By contrast, the national average rent increase nationwide was 2.69% and California averaged a 4.48% increase in rents on one bedroom apartments during the same time period.
Rents are also skyrocketing in East County, where some communities had double digit rent hikes from March 2018 through March 2019 for 1 BR units:
El Cajon+ 5.04%
Santee, by contrast, had only a modest 1.25% increase.
Spring Valley, the only unincorporated community in San Diego County with enough inventory to provide statistically valid data, had a 9.6% increase.
June 22, 2019 (San Diego) - The first two debates among Democratic presidential candidates vying to run against Pres. Donald Trump will be held on Wed. and Thurs., June 26 and 27 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Pacific Standard Time on NBC News, MSNBC and Telemundo. The debates can also be viewed live on the three networks’ websites and via their mobile apps.
June 22, 2019 (San Diego) – Short-term rentals through Airbnb and similar services have provided lucrative side incomes for some residential property owners. But vacation rentals have also caused complaints from neighbors, including concerns over wild parties that in some cases also caused serious damage to the hosts’ properties as well as resulting in theft, drug use, and violent crimes including fatal shootings.
June 21, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) – A generation ago, San Diego County was considered a bastion of conservatism and East County was solid red Republican territory. But that’s changing. First the city of San Diego turned blue and now has nearly twice as many Democrats as Republicans. Then the county flipped; today 35.7% of all county residents are Democrats and 27.2% are Republicans, with 31.6% no-party-preference voters. Two of East County’s four incorporated cities now have more Democrats than Republicans, one is evenly split, and a fourth is still staunchly Republican.
June 20, 2019 (Sacramento) -- Governor Gavin Newsom has issued an apology through executive order on behalf of California to Native American people for the many instances of violence, mistreatment and neglect inflicted upon California Native Americans throughout the state’s history.
East County News Service; Times of San Diego contributed to this report
Photo: Michael A. Schwartz of Santee, executive director of San Diego Gun Owners applauds judge’ decision
June 20, 2019 (San Diego) – U.S. District Judge Cathy Ann Bencivengo recently issued a preliminary injunction in favor of B&L Productions, Inc., operators of the popular Crossroads of the West Gun Show, which has annually drawn hundreds of thousands of people from all parts of San Diego County for decades to the Del Mar Fairgrounds.
Summer lunch sites are free to children struggling with hunger
Source: Feeding San Diego
June 19, 2019 (San Diego) - This summer, Feeding San Diego will host 26 distribution sites for the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP), a critical part of its summer hunger-relief programs. This program provides critical support throughout the summer months to ensure children are getting the nutrition they need to grow and thrive.
June 18, 2019 (Sycuan) – Members of sovereign tribes from across North America convened at the Sycuan resort in San Diego’s East County June 9-11 for the Missing and Murdered Indigenous People and Trafficking Awareness Conference.
June 17, 2019 (San Diego) – Congressman Duncan D. Hunter’s trial on 60 counts of federal corruption charges is scheduled for September. He has pleaded not guilty. However, last week his wife, wife, Margaret, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy and is now cooperating with prosecutors. Court documents reveal that she has implicated Rep. Hunter in serious crimes and affirmed that the campaign treasurer told the Hunters that their actions were illegal, but his advice was ignored. Hunter is accused of spending $250,000 of campaign funds for personal use and falsifying federal campaign finance filings to cover up the thefts.
If Congressman Hunter is convicted and either resigns or is expelled by the House of Representatives, a vacancy would be declared and a special election could be called. When or if that could occur, however, depends on several factors.
June 17, 2019 (San Diego) – The San Diego Press Club will present “We're All Interviewers Here: Why Asking Better Questions Will Get You Better Answers In All Professions,” a program on interviewing techniques with Dean Nelson, founder and director of the journalism program at Point Loma Nazarene University from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Wednesday, June 19, at the San Diego Downtown Central Library, Neil Morgan Auditorium, 330 Park Blvd., San Diego. The public is invited to attend.
By Donald H. Harrison, San Diego Jewish World, a member of the San Diego Online News Association
June 15, 2019 (San Diego) -- Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) surprised and mollified a restive crowd of environmentalists Saturday when she announced that when she returns to Washington for Tuesday’s Congressional session she will “be signing onto the Green New Deal.”
June 14, 2019 (La Mesa) – Why can’t the La Mesa Village Association produce a federal tax ID number required of all organizations? Why has it never filed either a tax return or an application for tax exempt status with the state Franchise Tax Board?
Click here for a video explaining how Level Pay works.
Summer electricity prices in effect as of June 1
June 14, 2019 (San Diego) - With summer just around the corner, SDG&E is encouraging customers to enroll in a Level Pay program that will help them avoid spikes in their energy bills and provide them with more predictable payment amounts throughout the summer and beyond.
June 14, 2019 (In-Ko-Pah) – Native Americans running from the Fort Yuma Indian reservation in Arizona to the Sycuan reservation in San Diego’s East County, a 150 mile journey, sought to draw attention to the plight of missing and murdered sovereignNative American women. On Friday morning, they wound up saving the lives of two women whose vehicle plunged off of I-8 east into a rugged canyon.
June 14, 2019 (Santee) -- Santee’s finance director, Tim McDermott, rolled out a balanced budget for the next fiscal year for the City Council to review at the June 12 Council meeting, but warned the city is facing future deficits unless changes are made.
Photos: President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin
June 14, 2019 (Washington D.C.) – President Donald Trump has sent shockwaves through the nation’s capital after he told ABC news that if a foreign government offered him dirt on a political opponent in the 2020 election, “I think I’d want to hear it…I think I’d take it.”
June 14, 2019 (El Cajon) – A transient pushing a shopping cart in traffic lanes on southbound State Route 67 at 3:37 a.m. on June 9th near the I-8 interchange stepped “directly into the path” of a Ford F-150 pickup. The driver, a 27-year-old El Cajon man, was unable to avoid striking the pedestrian and shopping cart, says Officer Jeff Christy with the California Highway Patrol.
June 13, 2019 (El Cajon) -- At its June 11th meeting, the El Cajon City Council received a presentation from Hasan Ikhrata, Executive Director of the San Diego Regional Association of Governments (SANDAG) about the new vision being formulated by the regional planning agency. After Mr. Ikhrata presented SANDAG’s “Five Big Moves” presentation, the City Council unanimously voted to support Mayor Bill Wells, sending a letter to SANDAG spelling out El Cajon’s position on the TransNet future spending.
Photo: Rep. Duncan D. Hunter and his wife, Margaret, in 2014
June 12, 2019 (San Diego) — Congressman Duncan D. Hunter’s wife, Margaret, is scheduled in court Thursday morning before Judge Thomas Whelan to change her plea to guilty in a federal corruption case, according to the court calendar. The Hunters are charged with 60 counts of stealing campaign funds for personal use and falsifying campaign finance reports to hide the thefts.
June 12, 2019 (San Diego) - The County’s most vulnerable residents are the focus of a new recommended budget formally presented to the County Board of Supervisors Monday. The $6.21 billion budget for Fiscal Year 2019-2020 invests $112 million in new spending for residents struggling to get by in our region.
Photo: UFCW Local 135 is one of the biggest labor unions in San Diego County. Photo by Ken Stone
June 12, 2019 (San Diego) - Members of seven Southern California food workers locals, including San Diego’s, will vote June 24 on whether to authorize a strike against three major grocery chains, it was announced Monday via social media.
June 12, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- An excessive heat warning remains in effect through today. The heat wave which prompted an excessive heat wave on Tuesday brought record-breaking temperatures across East County. So how hot was it?
June 12, 2019 (Guatay) – How did Pine Valley Community Planning Group member Warren Larkin wind up with 10 broken ribs, a collapsed lung and broken clavicle? According to his wife, Ann, Larkin can’t remember what happened before a passerby found him in the middle of Olde Highway 80 near his home in Guatay on Saturday afternoon, June 8th.
June 11, 2019 (El Cajon) - The El Cajon Police Department will be hosting its 4th Annual Teen Academy beginning on June 17, 2018. The academy will run Monday through Friday for two weeks, concluding with a graduation ceremony on Friday, June 28, 2019. Classes will begin at 7:30 am every morning, and conclude at 3:30 pm every afternoon. There are a total of 27 teens in this year’s Teen Academy.
By Paul Kruze, Contributing Editor; Editor Miriam Raftery also contributed to this report
Photo: Board President Tamara Otero
June 11, 2019 (El Cajon) -- The high drama and hijinks which have been commonplace lately at Cajon Valley Union School District (CVUSD) board meetings continued at the May 28th session. At one point the meeting was adjourned during a fracas among individuals outside the board room, overshadowing reports on district accomplishments. The action of adjourning, then reconvening the meeting for subsequent discussion and voting on agenda items raises new legal concerns.
Listen to audio: CVUSD meeting 5-28-19 adjourns in mid-session before reconvening