October 2013 Articles

GOVERNOR SIGNS LAWS TO PROTECT IMMIGRANT WORKERS FROM ABUSE

 

October 17, 2013 —California Governor Jerry Brown has signed into law AB 263, a bill designed to stop employers from retaliating against immigrant workers who stand up for their rights. AB 263 provides the strongest anti-retaliation protections for immigrant workers in the country.  

Brown previously signed two other bills, SB 666 and AB 524, as parts of a package sponsored by the California Labor Federation to protect workers from abuse regardless of immigration status. AB 263 and SB 666  prohibit employers from using immigration-related threats when workers speak out about unfair working conditions. AB 524 clarifies that making immigration threats in order to get away with stealing workers’ wages may constitute criminal extortion.

LA MESA FARMERS' MARKET TURNS 20: CELEBRATION PLANNED OCT. 25

 

October 17, 2013 (La Mesa)--On Friday, October 25 from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m., the City of La Mesa will celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the La Mesa Village Farmers’ Market.

The weekly market, held at La Mesa Civic Center, has become a Friday gathering place for La Mesans and East County residents. The celebration will include all the usual market amenities, plus a live DJ, free face-painting for kids, a booth decorating contest for vendors, and prize raffles. Shoppers will receive free 20th Anniversary shopping bags while supplies last and the City will also unveil new street banners featuring a special 20th Anniversary logo. The City of La Mesa invites citizens and visitors from throughout the region to join in celebrating this milestone.

ALL ABOARD THE PUMPKIN EXPRESS

The 2013 Pumpkin Express returns at the  Pacific Southwest Railway Museum in Campo This is the tenth annual Great Pumpkin event at the Museum.

Travel to the Great Pumpkin's Pumpkin Patch and tour the Haunted Train, where kids will pick out their own pumpkin and decorate it in the display building.

These trains are very popular and seating is limited, so reservations are required. Trains depart Saturdays and Sundays in October at 10 a.m., 12:15 p.m, and 2:30 p.m.

CONGRESSWOMAN DAVIS TO HOLD NEIGHBORHOOD DAY AT GROSSMONT COLLEGE OCT. 21

 

October 17, 2013 (El Cajon)--Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) will host a Neighborhood Day in East County.  Residents are encouraged to come share their ideas, ask a question, and get an update about what's happening in Congress at her signature town hall style event.

Davis’s Neighborhood Day will be held in the Griffin Center on the Grossmont College campus in El Cajon on Monday, October 21, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.

PANELISTS URGE PREPARATION, SPEAK OF EARTHQUAKE TYPES AND DAMAGE

story courtesy Grossmont College

October 17, 2013 (El Cajon) -- With a statewide earthquake drill known as the "Great California Shakeout" planned for 10:17 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 17, panelists in Grossmont College's Griffin Center told students last week, where to expect earthquakes to repeatedly happen, how to best be prepared for them, and what it is like to experience their devastation.  Many of these tips are included in the story below.

The panel was a precursor to the Oct. 17 drill in which students, faculty and staff will be advised that in the event that they are inside a building during a real earthquake, they should drop to the floor, get under and hold onto a desk or a table, and cover their heads to prevent materials shaken loose from falling on them.  The Oct. 17 drill will last approximately two minutes after which normal classroom activities will resume.

13-YEAR-OLD GIRL MISSING SINCE AUGUST

 

October 16, 2013 (Chula Vista) -- The Chula Vista Police Department today asked public help to locate a  missing / runaway teen.  Venicia Ortiz, age 13, was last seen in the 4200 Block of National Avenue in San Diego on or around August 7, 2013.

According to police, she  did not leave under duress.  There has been no evidence to indicate foul play, however, the police are concerned about her well being.  She is Hispanic, 5 feet 3 inches tall, weight 150 pounds, with brown eyes and long, black curly hair. She was last seen wearing a dark gray hooded sweatshirt and dark pants.

Download a flyer here.

CONGRESS VOTES TO END SHUTDOWN

 

Update October 17, 2013:  President Obama signed the measure into law last night, ending the shutdown.

By Nadin Abbott

October 16, 2013 (San Diego)--Tonight both the House and the Senate voted to end the government shutdown and raise the debt ceiling—just in time to prevent the U.S. from defaulting on our national debt by tomorrow’s deadline. The measure will fund the Government until January 15 and raise the ceiling until February 17. Moreover, a conference committee between the House and the Senate to discuss the budget has finally been appointed.

Among San Diego’s Congressional delegation, only Republican Duncan Hunter was unwilling to prevent a default on America’s debts, casting a “no” vote.  Republican Darrell Issa joined with Democrats Susan Davis, Juan Vargas and Scott Peters to vote in favor of the continuing resolution to find the government and end the shutdown. Overall in the House, 285 voted yes and 144 voted no. 

The vote in the Senate was overwhelming, with 81 of 100 Senators voting for the bill, including most Republicans.  California Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein both voted yes.

HALLOWEEN SPOOKTACULAR OCT. 26 AT MISSION TRAILS

 

October 16, 2013 (San Diego's East County ) -- The Third Annual Family Friendly Halloween Spooktacular will be presented by renowned storytellers Cynthia Griffin and Mary Holma from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. in the Mission Trails Regional Park Amphitheater. Children are encouraged to come in costume, and each child will receive a bag of Halloween treats.

BOO! SDBA FALL FESTIVAL & HOWL-O-WEEN CONTEST OCTOBER 19

 

October 16, 2013 (Alpine) – The San Diego Business Associates presents Fall Festival October 19 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Albertsons Parking Lot, 2955 Alpine Blvd., Alpine.  This free family friendly event will benefit The Heights Charter School.  Come out and enjoy children’s entertainment & games, silent auction, food and local merchants.

D-DAY: WILL THE U.S. DEFAULT ON DEBT?

 

By Miriam Raftery and Nadin Abbott

October 16, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – If Congress and the President don’t pass a spending bill and raise the debt ceiling, tomorrow the United States will default on its debts for the first time in our nation’s history. 

The heads of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce representing businesses, the AFL-CIO representing labor unions, and the nonprofit United Way have all urged Congress to end the shutdown and avoid a default. 

If the nation defaults on its debts, economists warn this could trigger a stock market crash, soaring interest rates, and a global recession.  The U.S. would be unable to borrow money and would be able to spend only cash on hand creating an uncertain future for all who rely on federal money, including Social Security and Medicare recipients.  Foreign creditors could seek to cash out their U.S. bond holdings, leaving the government unable to pay its debts.    Standard and Poors has downgraded the U.S. credit rating in reaction to the stalemate in Washington, CCN.

FILNER PLEADS GUILTY TO FELONY AND MISDEMEANOR CHARGES

Plea agreement ends his political career

By Miriam Raftery; photo courtesy ECM news partner 10 News

October 15, 2013 (San Diego) – Just hours after California Attorney General filed charges against Mayor Bob Filner, the former mayor pled guilty to felony false imprisonment and two misdemeanor counts of battery. Under a plea agreement, Filner will never seek public office again.

The victims were not named, identified only as “Jane Does.”  The felony case entailed Filner kissing a woman against her will and using the “Filner headlock” to restrain her.  Prosecutor Melissa Mandel  stated that the midsdemeanors  included kissing a woman on the lips without consent at a “Meet the Mayor” event and fondling another woman’s buttocks while having a photo taken at a rally.

EXPLOSIONS IN EL CAJON

By Miriam Raftery

October 15, 2013 (El Cajon) – The Sheriff’s Bomb Arson squad has been dispatched to 1518 Sams Hill Road in unincorporated El Cajon following a report at 7:13 p.m. of explosions and a smell of sulfur.

“The reporting party heard loud booms coming from the roof of an apartment complex,” Lieutenant Jason Vickery told East County Magazine.

SDSU TROLLEY STATION REOPENED AFTER EVACUATION

The San Diego State University Transit Center was shut down and the Adams Humanities building was evacuated at 9:45 a.m. due to fire alarms sounding. Trolleys where shut down going both directions between Grantville & 70th Street.  Substitute buses where put in place. The alarms where triggered by fumes being released by a leaking battery inside one of SDSU’s trolley operating rooms.

PHOTOS OF THE WEEK: BOBCAT ON THE PROWL

 

By Miriam Raftery

October 15, 2013 (Descanso) – Debbie Ekhaml had just finished a horseback ride near Descanso and was eating lunch shortly after noon recently when a surprise visitor emerged. 

“This beautiful male Bobcat appeared and caught a gopher while we quietly sat under an oak and watched,” she told ECM. “ He hung around for about 50 minutes and tried to get a second one (unsuccessfully).  We were amazed not only to get to watch him, but to see him hunt in the middle of the day!”

TIGER PATRIARCH, RAJA, LAID TO REST AT LIONS, TIGERS AND BEARS

 

 

“Raja’s spirit will continue to live on as we uphold our promise to provide a safe haven for the unwanted and abused. Rest in peace Raja, you will forever be in our hearts.” -- Bobbi Brink

By Miriam Raftery

October 15, 2013 (Alpine) – Last week, Lions Tigers and Bears in Alpine held a memorial service for Raja, the beloved tiger patriarch who resided at the facility since his rescue from a Texas owner in 2002.  The 17-year-old tiger died October 7 of complications from chronic renal failure, a common cause of death in elderly felines.

7.2 EARTHQUAKE HITS THE ISLAND OF BOHOL IN THE PHILIPPINES

 By Nadin Abbott

 October 14, 2013 (San Diego) Reports are coming in from the Philippines that the southern island of Bohol was hit with a magnitude 7.2 earthquake this evening, according to the United States Geological Service.  At least 20 people have died, according to the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council.

According to Earthquake report, this was a shallow earthquake, which has caused building collapse, including the main church in Bohol, with Mindanao affected as well. USGS has a notice that due to the shut down, operation are at a minimum.

NEW LAW REQUIRES CHARTER CITIES TO PAY PREVAILING WAGES

By Miriam Raftery

October 14, 2013 (San Diego’s East County ) – Governor Jerry Brown today signed into law Senate Bill 7, which requires charter cities to pay prevailing wages for public works construction projects or lose state funds. 

In East County, the measure will impact El Cajon, which last year passed a ballot measure to become a charter.  Now projects such as a new animal shelter will have to be built by workers paid the region’s prevailing wage.

CREWS RESCUE TRAPPED VICTIM AFTER HEAD-ON CRASH IN DEHESA

 

 

 

 

 

Photos: Lakeside Fire District

 

October 13, 2013 (Dehesa) – Uppdated October 15, 2013 -- A critically injured patient was freed from wreckage of a  high-speed, head-on crash in Dehesa and air-lifted to a hospital. The collision occurred at 8:13 a.m. at the junction of Dehesa Road  west of Sloane Canyon Road. 

According to the California Highway Patrol, a Ford Explorer driven by a 46-year-old man from Spring Valley crossed the center line while traveling eastbound and struck a Nissan Titan driven by a 21-year-old man from El Cajon.  

  “The driver of the Nissan had no time to react,” said CHP officer Kevin Pearlstein.

MAYOR AND RIVAL TO REV UP AT SOAP BOX DERBY RACE NOV. 2

 

October 13, 2013 (La Mesa) -- Boosted by sponsorship of Drew Ford,  La Mesa Kiwanis Club will conduct its annual Soap Box Derby Rally Race on Saturday, November 2 in La Mesa.

"Families with kids from throughout Southern California, Arizona and Nevada are expected to make the trip," Blake said.  "Rally race winners in stock, super stock, and masters division cars earn points to help them qualify for the national race held each July in Akron, Ohio."

SHOPPER SURPRISES INTRUDER IN VEHICLE AT GROSSMONT CENTER

 

October 13, 2013 (La Mesa) – A shopper returning to his Ford Ranger  at 7:32 p.m. last night saw a man inside the vehicle going through belongings in the parking lot at Grossmont Center. 

The victim confronted the intruder, who fled.  An officer responding near Walmart pursued the suspect on foot and apprehended him. Lance Rodgers of El Cajon, 31, was booked into County jail on charges or burglary, possession of burglary tools, and resisting arrest.

JAMUL INDIAN CASINO PLANS MOVE FORWARD; NEIGHBORS COMPLAIN OF CLOSED DOOR MEETINGS

 

Labor and business groups voice support for casino jobs;  residents ask why community was excluded from meetings with Governor's staff, including a site visit

By Miriam Raftery

October 12, 2013 (Jamul) – A senior advisor to Governor Jerry Brown, Jacob Appelmith, has confirmed in a letter to Jamul Indian Village Tribal Chairman Raymond Hunter that the tribe has met requirements of the Tribal-State Gaming compact for a proposed casino on Highway 94 in Jamul.  “As you are aware, the State supports the Tribe’s efforts to mitigate any and all of the significant off-Reservation impacts,” the letter continued.

‘ONCE IN A BLUE MOON’ IN LAKESIDE ON OCTOBER 20

 

October 12, 2013 (Lakeside) – Lakeside’s River Park Conservancy’s Once in a Blue Moon Dinner and Auction will take place October 20 from 4 – 8 p.m. at Hazy Meadow Ranch, 15466 El Monte Road, Lakeside.  Discover the beauty of El Monte valley while enjoying live entertainment, sipping cocktails and eating Santa Maria Style barbeque.

20TH ANNUAL ALPINE FIRE DEPT. OPEN HOUSE ON OCTOBER 19

 

October 12, 2013 (Alpine) – The Alpine firefighters will be holding their 20th Annual Open House on October 19 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 1364 Tavern Rd., Alpine.  It will be a fun day for the whole family with Fire K9 Pyro, Smokey the Bear, McGruff the crime dog and Sparky the fire dog.  The kids can enjoy face painting, balloons and a snake display.  Child I.D. and fingerprinting will be available courtesy of the Kiwanis Club.  There will also be food, fire displays, free gifts and raffles.

ARREST MADE IN SANTA SOPHIA CHURCH ARSON CASE

By Miriam Raftery; photo courtesy ECM news partner 10 News

October 12, 2013 (Spring Valley ) – Eugene William Volk, 45, has been arrested and charged with arson in connection with the fire at Santa Sophia Church on October 8. 

Detective Calvert, lead investigator from the San Diego Sheriff's Department, developed sufficient probable cause to arrest Volk, said Detective Portillo-with the Sheriff’s Bomb Arson unit which located Volk walking less than a quarter mile from the church at the intersection of Campo Road and Conrad Drive  on October 13.  Authorities have not revealed what evidence they believe links Volk to the crime.

CONGRESSWOMAN DAVIS MOVES TO FORCE VOTE TO OPEN FEDERAL GOVERNMENT

 

October 12, 2013 (Washington D.C.) --As the economically damaging government shutdown entered its 12th day, Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) took an extraordinary legislative step to bypass the Speaker of the House and force a vote to open the government.

“A majority of the Congress wants to end the government shutdown and stop the economic harm it is causing,” said Davis. “Legislation to open the federal government is sitting on the Speaker’s desk, having passed the Senate two weeks ago. Unfortunately, he won’t let the House vote. This move will apply the necessary pressure to force a vote to end the shutdown.”

Davis joined her House colleagues in signing what is known as a discharge petition to require the Speaker to bring the Senate-passed government funding bill to the House floor for an immediate vote. If a majority of the House signs the petition, a vote would be scheduled.

PALOMAR MOUNTAIN STATE PARK HOSTS APPLE FESTIVAL OCT. 27

 

 

 

 

 

October 12, 2013 (Palomar) -- Palomar Mountain State Park' invites the public to its 3rd Annual "Apple Festival", Sunday October 27th from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Admission is free to the park for this fun and educational occasion.

The Park has apple trees planted by homesteading pioneers over 100 years ago--and they're still producing delicious apples to this day.  Come spend the day at the Park to enjoy food, love folk music, square dancing, games, arts and crafts with an apple harvest theme.

NEW CALIFORNIA GUN LAWS SIGNED, OTHERS VETOED

 

By Miriam Raftery

October 11, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – If you leave a loaded gun where a child can access it, you’ll be committing a crime in California. If you store a loaded gun where someone prohibited from owning a gun has access and injures someone, you'll be guilty of criminal storage.  These are among nearly a dozen new gun laws signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown.

If you own a long gun, you’ll need to earn a safety certificate under a bill authored by Senator Marty Block (D-San Diego).

Pscyhotherapists will be required to report a serious threat of violence made by a patient against any specific victims to police within 24 hours. Police must notify the California Justice Department within a day after getting the report. The bill seeks to prevent a tragedy such as the Aurora, Colorado theater massacre; the shooter had threatened violence to his psychiatrist but doctor-patient confidentiality law prohibited the psychiatrist from notifying police.  A patient who threatens a psychotherapist will be banned from owning a gun for five years (currently the limit is six months). 

CONTROVERSIAL NET METERING MEASURE SIGNED INTO LAW BY GOVERNOR BROWN

 

By Paul Kruze

“The way everything has turned out, the energy hogs are being rewarded…Now, no matter how much you conserve energy, no matter how much you generate, the residential ratepayers are stuck with this.” – Pete Hasapopoulos, San Diego Sierra Club

October 11, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) -- Amid a chorus of cheers and jeers, Governor Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 327 reflecting the first change to electric rates and how  major power utilities account for residential rooftop solar systems.

Introduced by Fresno Democrat Party Assemblyman Henry T. Perea, the legislation directs the California Public Utilities Commission to design a new net metering program that would take effect within four years. The bill also gives the CPUC authority to require utilities to source more than 33 percent of their power from renewable sources like wind and solar. In addition, the new law will replace the electric rate restrictions adopted by  California during the state’s energy deregulation crisis in 2000.

GARDENING SAN DIEGO STYLE: PLANTSTRAVAGANZA NOV. 2

 

 

 

 

Dorcas E. Utter Butterfly Pavilion and diverse plant sale at Water Conservation Garden

October 11, 2013 (Rancho San Diego) -- Considering fall and winter as prime gardening months would be scoffed at in many parts of the United States, but not in San Diego, with its Mediterranean climate characterized by mild-to-cool wet winters, and warm-to-hot dry summers.  The Fall Planstravaganza!, held at the Water Conservation Garden from 9am-4pm on Saturday, November 2, 2013, helps San Diegans make the most of the region’s fall-to-spring planting season and save water while they do it.

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