A DIVERSE FIELD OF EL CAJON CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATES: BALLOT STATEMENTS ARE NOW AVAILABLE

DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: FESTIVALS AND EVENTS AUG. 25-OCT. 2

HEAR OUR INTERVIEW WITH COLIN PARENT: ATTORNEY, ENVIRONMENTALIST AND AFFORDABLE HOUSING ADVOCATE RUNS FOR LA MESA CITY COUNCIL

HELP THE ENVIRONMENT--BE GREEN! DISPOSE OF HOUSEHOLD CHEMICALS FREE ON SEPT. 17 IN POTRERO

ECM WORLD WATCH: NATIONAL AND GLOBAL NEWS

LA MESA WINE WORKS GRAND OPENING PARTY AUGUST 27

ALPINE MAN ARRESTED FOR PHOTOGRAPHING GIRL IN WALMART BATHROOM; SHERIFF SEEKS OTHER POSSIBLE VICTIMS

OPEN SEATS IN SANTEE DRAW 2 MAYORAL AND 3 COUNCIL CANDIDATES: BALLOT STATEMENTS AVAILABLE

OPEN SEATS IN LEMON GROVE ATTRACT 3 MAYORAL CANDIDATES AND 5 COUNCIL CANDIDATES; BALLOT STATEMENTS NOW UP FOR PUBLIC REVIEW

UNSUNG HEROES OF FIRE RECOVERY BRING PRICELESS RELIEF

43RD ANNUAL LA MESA OKTOBERFEST SEPT. 30 - OCT. 2

ESCAPED PRISONER HAS TIES TO COLLEGE GROVE, CHULA VISTA

News

1,000 STRUCTURES THREATENED

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo by Richard Edwords

Update June 22, 2016 7:45 a.m.:  The size of the fire is 6,500 acres as of 7 a.m. today and it is now 15% contained.

June 21, 2016 (San Diego's East County) -- 9 p.m.--Tonight Cal Fire indicates the Border Fire has been mapped at a reduced acreage estimate of 6,020 acres.  The fire is now 10% contained. Approximately 1,000 structures remain threatened but no homes have burned, though 4 outbuildings were lost.



Our media outlet has learned from multiple sources of a desperate need for water and food for people, pets and livestock in Potrero, where many animals have already perished. People who evacuated and were unable to bring animals with them, or who were away when the fire started, were not allowed entry by authorities into the evacuation area due to concerns over shifting winds and the potential for fire to return. One chicken ranch has had many thousands of birds die, multiple sources told ECM. Dogs, pigs, horses and other animals remain at risk, some with no food and no water. In response to our inquiry, Michele Clock with the County called and said the County will try to get help tomorrow.

PASSAGES: RICK ALEXANDER, FORMER GROSSMONT-CUYAMACA COMMUNTY COLLEGE DISTRICT BOARD MEMBER AND REALTOR

 

East County News Service

June 21, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) – Rick Alexander, a prominent East County realtor, long-time member of the Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District Board, and active member in community organizations passed away June 13th.  A memorial service is scheduled for Saturday, July 9th at 10 a.m. in the Performing Arts Theatre at Cuyamaca College. All are welcome to attend.

LARGE ANIMAL SHELTERS OPEN IN DESCANSO AND BOULEVARD

Source: County of San Diego

June 21, 2016 (San Diego's East County) --The County of San Diego Office of Emergency Services announced this afternoon that large animal shelters are  available at the Boulevard Customs and Border Protection station located at 2463 Ribbonwood Rd., Boulevard, and Circle T Ranch at 24215 Viejas Grade Rd., Descanso.

If you need emergency assistance evacuating, call 9-1-1. If you need additional information, visit sdcountyemergency.com or call 2-1-1.

For assistance evacuating animals, call County Animal Services dispatch at 619-236-2341.

HUMANE SOCIETY RESCUES ANIMALS IN DISTRESS,PROVIDES RESOURCES AND HELP TO PET OWNERS IN BORDER FIRE

 

Source: San Diego Humane Society

June 21, 2016 (San Diego's East County) --As the #BorderFire continues to grow in East County, many people have been forced to evacuate, uncertain of options for their pets. San Diego Humane Society’s Humane Officers and Animal Rescue Reserve volunteer team have important information for pet owners in need of assistance.

NEW PROGRAM TO HELP PEOPLE OFF STREETS

 

By Jose A. Alvarez,

The San Diego County Board of Supervisors today accepted the Project One for All implementation plan that will provide people who are homeless and have serious mental illness access to a coordinated range of services, including housing and health care.

MAN FIRES SHOTS AS ANIMAL SERVICES ATTEMPTS RESCUE

 

By Gig Connaughton,

June 21, 2016 (Campo) - Things got hotter than they ever should have at the Border fire in the Campo area Monday when a man got a shotgun and fired shots to keep County employees from rescuing a burned emu.

MANDATORY EVACUATION ISSUED FOR LAKE MORENA

 

Update 3:10 p.m.  The San Diego County Sheriff’s Office has issued an additional evacuation order for the following area. The area of the evacuation order is within the following boundaries; Pacific Crest Trail to the south, Buckman Springs Road to the east from Lake Morena Dr. to Morena Valley Road, Moreno Stokes Valley Road (Corral Canyon) at Sky Ranch (Sky Valley Road) to the west and Moreno Stokes Valley Road (Corral Canyon) at Buckman Springs Road  to the east.

New road closure is located at Buckman Springs Road at Old Buckman Springs.

 

Additional public information regarding the Border Fire can be obtained by calling 2-1-1. Continue to follow updates of the incident on the twitter account  @calfiresandiego.

East County News Service

June 21, 2016 (San Diego's East County) - An update about the Border Fire has been issued.  Lake Morena residents on the Campo/Lake Morena Neighborhood Watch Facebook page have posted that they have received calls and text alerts that a mandatory evacuation has been issued for Lake Morena.

ANIMAL CONTROL OFFICERS, NEIGHBORS COME TO RESCUE OF PETS AND LIVESTOCK IN BORDER FIRE

 

Photos: Animal Control officers comfort rescue rabbits; dogs rescued from Border Fire

By Miriam Raftery

June 21, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) - County animal control officers have carried out dozens of rescues of animals threatened by the Border Fire including everything from dogs and cats to sheep, horses and chickens. View video of rescue efforts: https://youtu.be/6lE-IwzbO04?t=16 . If you have animals left behind in the evacuation area that need food and water, call the county’s 24-hour emergency dispatch unit at 619-236-2341. 

EVACUATION WARNINGS ISSUED FOR LAKE MORENA, CAMPO: 800 STRUCTURES STILL THREATENED

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Border Fire, Day 1, by Leon Thompson

June 21,2016 (Lake Morena/Campo) 1:30 p.m. – An evacuation warning has been issued for Lake Morena and Campo, Cal Fire has announced.  Mandatory evacuations remain in effect for Potrero,Forrest Gate, Star Ranch, Cowboy Ranch,Dog Patch and Canyon City.

800 structures remain threatened and 4 outbuildings have been destroyed. Highway 94 is closed west of Buckman Springs to state route 188. The Pacific Coast Trail is also closed to hikers. 

“The fire continues to move to the north and northeast,threatening portions of the Pacific Crest National Scenic trail as well as surrounding communities,” a Border 3 Fire Update issued by Cal Fire states.

UPDATE ON SCHOOLS AND GRADUATION SERVICE IN MOUNTAIN EMPIRE DISTRICT

 

By Miriam Raftery

June 21, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) – All schools in the Mountain Empire school district remain closed today due to the Border Fire.   The Mountain Empire High School graduation is tentatively set to be held Thursday at 6:30 p.m. contingent on air quality and fire conditions. 

BORDER FIRE HOLDING AT 7500 ACRES, CAL FIRE REPORTS TODAY

 

By Miriam Raftery

June 21, 2016 (San Diego’s East County) – Cal Fire has issued an update at 11:32 a.m. advising the Border Fire is holding at 7500 acres, but still only 5% contained. Evacuation orders remain in place for Forest Gate, Star Ranch, Cowboy Ranch, Dog Patch and Canyon City.  The Red Cross has an evacuation shelter set up at Los Coches Creek Middle School at 9669 Dunbar Lane in El Cajon.

MAIL DISRUPTIONS FROM FIRE

June 20, 2016 (Campo)--Campo's  Postmaster has posted the following message on Facebook for those whose mail service was disrupted there today: 

Mail Delivery: Campo/Lake Morena area had partial mail delivery today. Your carriers were pulled back due to the current hazards and for employee safety. There is a possibility the same situation will occur tomorrow. If you have any concerns or questions, please contact me at 619-478-5466 or message me. All mail is being held at the Campo Post Office. If anyone has meds they are expecting to be delivered please call so we can help get them to you. Thank you. Stay safe. Please share this. I am also a Campo resident, so I am watching this fire as well. ---Postmaster Cindy

7,500 ACRES CONSUMED BY BORDER FIRE; 5%CONTAINED

By Miriam Raftery

Photo:  Sparks across roadway driving through the Border Fire, by Richard Edwords

New fires are burning in Mexico near the border

June 20,2016 (San Diego’s East County) – The Border Fire has swelled to 7,500 acres and is still only 5% contained, Cal Fire announced this evening, adding,  “Triple digit temperatures and single digit humidity is creating extreme fire behavior and increased activity is being experienced.”

Mandatory evacuations are in effect for Potrero,Forest Gate, Star Ranch, Cowboy Ranch. Dog Patch and Canyon City communities.  An overnight evacuation shelter is set up at Los Coches Creek Middle school at 9669 Dunbar Lane in El Cajon.

Two new fires, possibly ignited by sparks from the Border Fire, are now burning in Mexico within a couple of miles from the international border south of the Border Fire conflagration.

Jan Hedlun in Potrero warns that people who did not evacuate when instructed by authorities are now facing restrictions. “Once you leave they won't let you return and many of us have livestock or animals we're tending,”she says.”My well meter has melted so no water at the house but friends dropped off a bunch of water. The worst of times brings out the best in people!”

DIANNE JACOB BLASTS FOREST SERVICE FOR REFUSING TO FLY TANKERS FROM RAMONA AIR BASE, WHERE CAL FIRE IS LANDING SAME PLANES

 

East County News Service

June 20, 2016 (Ramona) --Supervisor Dianne Jacob  posted blisteringr remarks on her Facebook Page today, with the Border Fire raging out of control and forcing evacuations in multiple rural commnities: 

"The following is my statement in response to reports yesterday that United States Forest Service (USFS) air tankers were not utilizing the Ramona Air Attack Base, and instead were flying to San Bernardino in between drops on the Border Fire. The same Next Generation Air Tankers used by CAL FIRE were safely refilling at the Ramona Air Attack Base yesterday.

“The USFS and federal leaders are failing our region and unnecessarily putting lives and property at risk. The Board of Supervisors last summer called on the USFS and the federal government to land their Next Generation Air Tankers at the Ramona Air Attack Base in order to increase the frequency of drops on a wildfire. CAL FIRE has demonstrated that these types of planes can safely use the Ramona airport. Now we need the USFS to demonstrate that public safety is a higher priority than bureaucratic stubbornness. These planes can carry up to 3,000 gallons of retardant and increasing the frequency of drops gives us a better chance of knocking down dangerous wildfires,” Jacob concluded.

FEMA FIRE MANAGEMENT ASSISTANCE GRANTED FOR BORDER FIRE

 

East County News Service

Photo: Cameron Corners, March 20, by Joe Doe

March 20, 2016 (San Diego's East County) -- The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has authorized the use of federal funds to assist the State of California battle the Border 3 Fire burning in San Diego County.

The FMAG provides federal funding for up to 75% of eligible firefighting costs.  Eligible costs can include expenses for field camps; equipment use, repair and replacement; tools; materials; supplies and mobilization; and demobilization activities.

NEW SHELTER OPENS AT LOS COCHES; ADVISORY EVACUATIONS AT BUCKMAN SPRINGS

 

Update 4:30 p.m. - The Pacific Coast Trail near Campo is threatened. Hikers are advised to stay off the trail, Cleveland National Forest reports.  The fire is also threatening the Hauser Wilderness area.

By Miriam Raftery

Photo, Left by Richard Edwords, Kamps Propane

June 20, 2016 (San Diego's East County) 4 p.m. -- Per County Emergency Services:  The Sheriff's Department has issued an evacuation advisory near Campo and Buckman Springs due to the Border Fire. Evacuations are currently voluntary. Residents can go to Golden Acorn Casino, 1800 Golden Acorn Way, which has been set up as a temporary evacuation point. It is not a shelter.

The American Red Cross has opened an overnight shelter at Los Coches Creek Middle School (9969 Dunbar Lane, El Cajon) for residents impacted by the Border Fire.

EVACUATIONS ORDERED IN CAMPO, POSSIBLE EVACUATIONS NEXT IN LAKE MORENA

By Miriam Raftery

June 20, 2016 (Campo)--Cal Fire has ordered mandatory evacuations of Star Ranch, Forest Gate, Canyon City, Dogpatch and Cowboy Ranch in the Campo area due to the Border Fire.

Scanner traffic indicates an advisory evacuation in Lake Morena.

A red flag alert is in effect per the National Weather Service. 

Below is more info from the Sheriff earlier today on the fire that has scorched 1900 acres and is 5% contained:

BORDER FIRE 5% CONTAINED, 1900 ACRES: SCHOOLS CLOSED, 3 INJURED

By Miriam Raftery

Photo courtesy of Cal Fire via Twitter

June 20, 2016 (Potrero) -- The Border Fire has charred 1,900 acres and is now 5% contained as of 9 a.m. according to Cal Fire.  The community of Potrero remains under evacuation order. Highway 94 remains closed through the area.

Scanner traffic indicates a second fire has been reported in Mexico close to the Border Fire; we are awaiting confirmation and details.

Mt. Empire School District has announced all schools districtwide will be closed today due to the fire. Three people have been injured including a firefighter. Several outbuildings have burned, per Cal Fire. Hundreds of firefighters from across Southern California are battling the blaze in steep, rugged terrain that has burned in many years and is dry from years of drought during triple-digit heat.

The emergency shelter for today is at Campo Elementary School, 1654 Buckman Springs Road.

BORDER FIRE IN POTRERO NOW 1,500 ACRES, EVACUATION CENTERS OPEN

Update 10 p.m. The fire is 5% contained and a firefighter has been injured, CalFire reports. An emergency overnight shelter is open at Campo Elementary School, 1654 Buckman Springs Rd.in Campo.

By Miriam Raftery

Photo, left: air tanker battles the Border Fire, by Leon Thompson

June 19, 2016 (Potrero) --As of 7:20 tonight, the fast-growing Border Fire has charred 1,500 acres and led to mandatory evacuation orders for the entire town of Potrero, per Cal Fire.  Structures are threatened. 

Residents fleeing the Border Fire can now go to these evacuation centers:  Campo Community Center ( Cool Zone )  at 300 Sheridan Rd, Campo Elementary School ( Red Cross Shelter ) at 1654 Buckman Springs Rd, or the Dulzura Community Center at 1136 Community Building Road off State Route 94 (note corrected address). This information has been verified through Red Cross and Campo Community Center employees.  The Sheriff reports a third evacuation center opened at Campo Elementary School, 1654 Buckman Springs Road, Campo.

If you need emergency assistance in evacuation, call 9-1-1. If you need additional information, check the San Diego County Emergency website at www.sdcountyemergency.com or call the San Diego Sheriff's Department non-emergency line at 858-565-5200.  For help with large animal evacuations due to , call the San Diego County Animal Services at (619) 236-2341.  Follow additoinal updates on Twitter at .

Road closures in effect on Highway 94 are changing rapidly as the fire moves.  Get the latest traffic and road closure information at https://cad.chp.ca.gov/Traffic.aspx.  Here are closures as of now:

BRUSH FIRE IN POTRERO: EVACUATIONS AND HIGHWAY CLOSURE

 

NOTE: We have posted a new article with the latest updates on this fast-growing fire.  New updates will be posted here:  http://www.eastcountymagazine.org/border-fire-potrero-now-1500-acres-eva...

 

Follow us on Twitter at EastCountyAlert for the most timely updates. Please post any info you have in the comments section below our story.  You can email photos to editor@eastcountymagazine.org.

EL CAJON POLICE PARTNERING WITH EAST COUNTY AGENCIES TO HELP REDUCE HOMELESSNESS

 

East County News Service

June 18, 2016 (El Cajon) -- During Tuesday’s City Council meeting, El Cajon Police Chief Jeff Davis addressed the City Council to make them aware of the police department’s new partnership with other East County agencies for a homeless outreach program. The actions come after the County Grand Jury issued a report recommending East County cities take actions to improve help for the homeless, as ECM reported earlier this week.

MORE PLACES TO COOL OFF ON SUNDAY

 

By Miriam Raftery

June 17, 2016 (San Diego's East County) -- A reader e-mailed us to point out that many of the Cool Zones listed on the County's map are not open Sundays. So we did some research to find a few more options on some cool places to go, such as shopping malls, bowling alleys, ice rinks, movie theatres, casinos, aquatic centers, libraries and more. 

We also have some tips on how to beat the heat at home and keep your cool. Plan ahead, since SDG&E says Flex Alerts (temporary power outages) are possible during the extreme heat starting Sunday. 

Check out our list below of cool places  that are open Sunday and beyond:

EXTREME HEAT WARNING-- AND COOL ZONE LOCATIONS

 

Update: See our list of fun places to cool off that aren't on the county's list of cool zones -- we found bowling alleys, ice rinks, theaters, malls, casinos, splash parks and more,plus tips on how to coll down at home:http://www.eastcountymagazine.org/more-places-cool-sunday

Flex power outages are possible, SDG&E warns, so be prepared!

East County News Service

June 17, 2016 (San Diego's East County) -- Extremely high temperatures forecast for the valleys, mountains, and desert areas of San Diego County have prompted the National Weather Service to issue an excessive heat warning.  The warning is in effect from 11 a.m. Sunday, June 19th, through 8 p.m. Wednesday, June 23rd across our county.  Temperatures could reach 25 degrees higher than normal in some locations, with deserts hitting 120 degrees and many inland areas in triple digit temperatures.

The County operates a Cool Zones program and has designated more than 115 air-conditioned buildings as cooling centers.  For a complete listing of Cool Zone locations, see the Emergency Map. Additionally, the following two Cool Zones have extended hours for Sunday 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Monday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.:

  • Borrego Springs Library, 587 Palm Canyon Drive, Suite 125
  • Potrero Library, 24883 Potrero Valley Rd.

PARALLELS FROM THE PAST: EXHIBIT ON INTERNMENT OF LOCAL JAPANESE-AMERICAN STUDENTS IN WWII EVOKES FEARS “IT COULD HAPPEN AGAIN,” SAYS HISTORIAN

 

By Chisato Iverson and Miriam Raftery

 

June 16, 2016 (La Mesa) –For Donna Neimeier at the La Mesa Historical Society, preparing an exhibit on Grossmont High School students forced into internment camps during World War II provided troubling memories from her own childhood.

“I was in first or second grade when all of this happened. I knew that my Japanese friends were gone…We didn’t know where they went,” she recalled.  After  her friends returned, she recalls, “They were very withdrawn and they never talked about it..”

Now she reflects, “Here I am, 75 years later, learning about this whole thing…I think with prejudice and the way we all feel about prejudice now, it’s something that is very upsetting to me personally, that it happened.”   The most important reason for the museum’s exhibit, she believes, is to teach people about the past, in hopes that it will never be repeated.

HIGHWAY 67 CONSTRUCTION UPDATE

 

East County News Service

June 14, 2016 (Ramona) -- Motorists traveling along SR-67 at Dye and Highland Valley Road in Ramona may have already noticed indications of construction at the intersection as part of a major upgrade project that includes road widening and more.  Crews placed construction signs the first week of June and the speed limit has been reduced from 55 to 45 mph for the safety of commuters and highway workers. For a description of the project click here.  

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