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10TH ANNUAL DUNCAN L. HUNTER WOUNDED MARINE GOLF CLASSIC MAY 4 AT COTTONWOOD

 

March 4, 2015 (Rancho San Diego)- - For the10th year, golfers will gather to support needs of wounded Army, Navy and Marine Corps  personnel  in the Naval Medical Center San Diego.

HOMELAND SECURITY FUNDED THROUGH SEPTEMBER

 

San Diego delegation splits on vote

March 4, 2015 (Washington DC)--The Department of Homeland Security won’t be shutting down.  Both houses of Congress have now passed legislation to fund the agency through September.

LEGISLATORS GRILL CPUC OVER HIRING OF CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYERS

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Michael Picker, CPUC Chairman

March 4, 2015 (Sacramento)--The California Public Utilities Commission needs criminal defense lawyers amid state and federal investigations of corruption allegations, the Commissions new chairman, Michael Picker told a legislative panel this week.

CONTROVERSY OVER CLINTON'S E-MAILS THROUGH PRIVATE ACCOUNT

 

Photo: Hillary Rodham Clinton at 2007 California Democratic Convention

By Miriam Raftery

March 2, 2015 (Washington D.C.) – A controversy has arisen involving Hillary Rodham Clinton over revelations that while serving as Secretary of State, she did not have an official government e-mail address and used only a personal e-mail address for all of her official government business.

ASSEMBLYWOMAN GONZALEZ PROPOSES ACCOUNTABILITY FOR PUBLIC UTILITY EXECUTIVE BONUSES

 

AB 1266 Would Force Utilities to Receive Public Approval for Bonuses After Ratepayers Hit With Billions in New Costs

March 1, 2015 (Sacramento)--California State Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) introduced Assembly Bill 1266 on Friday to require public utilities to justify executive bonus compensation at a public hearing of the California Public Utilities Commission following any federal safety violation that results in a cost of $5 million or more to ratepayers.

BAG BAN BLOCKED

 

February 27, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) A new state law banning plastic grocery bags won’t be taking effect this summer after all. That’s because opponents led by the plastic industry have obtained enough signatures to qualify a measure to overturn the bag ban for the November ballot, the Secretary of State has announced.

OBAMA VETOES KEYSTONE PIPELINE

 

East County News Service

February 28, 2015 (Washington D.C.)—President Barack Obama has vetoed the Keystone XL pipeline bill passed by the Republican-controlled Congress. In his veto message, he criticized the Congressional attempt to bypass his administration’s environmental review of the project and ““circumvent longstanding and proven processes for determining whether or not building and operating a cross-border pipeline serves the national interest.”

WILL HOMELAND SECURITY SHUT DOWN THIS WEEK?

 

East County News Service

February 24, 2015 (Washington D.C.)--The Department of Homeland Security is set to shut down if Congress doesn’t pass a funding bill by Friday. The White House says it is preparing for a potential shut down starting this weekend, the Washington Post reports.

OH BABY! BILL WOULD ELIMINATE TAX ON DIAPERS

 

By Miriam Raftery

February 25, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) – It’s rare for a labor leader and a tax fighter to agree on most issues.  But AB 717, a bill to eliminate sales tax on diapers in California, has accomplished just that.

SAN MIGUEL FIRE VOTES TO OPEN FINANCE COMMITTEE TO PUBLIC, PRESS

East County News Service

February 26, 2015 (Spring Valley) – As a result of an East County Magazine (ECM) inquiry, San Miguel Fire District’s Board voted this week to make its finance committee a permanent standing committee, which means that the committee’s meetings will now be open to the press and public.

Previously, the finance committee was deemed an ad-hoc committee by the district, which argued that it did not need to allow public access.  ECM contacted Californians Aware (CALAWARE), an organization that protects public access under Califoirnia’s sunshine laws.

MONSTAH SUPERPAC TAKES ON SAN ONOFRE NUCLEAR WASTE ISSUE, TARGETS ISSA

 

Click here to hear our interview on KNSJ with David Eisentein, the San Diegan who founded the Monstah SuperPac

Feb. 28 “Magic at Magicopolis” launch event planned

February 26, 2015 (San Diego) – Monstah Superpac, a San Diego-based political action committee dedicated to protecting public health and safety, aims to “make the nuclear waste at San Onofre disappear.”

The SuperPac’s first target?  San Diego Congressman Darrell Issa, over his failure to address the public safety hazards posed by those radioactive wastes, buried in canisters just 5/8 of an inch deep in an active earthquake zone. A nuclear disaster at San Onofre would place 20 million Southern Californians within a 50 mile radius at serious risk, potentially displacing residents in multiple counties including San Diego.

MonstahPac is rolling out its Network 2016, billed as the “final frontier in our fight against nuclear danger at San Onofre,” with a “Magic at Magicopolis” event Saturday, February 28th.

SENATOR ANDERSON’S OFFICE BANISHES VOTER WHO ASKED TOUGH QUESTIONS

Anderson running against Supervisor Jacob, but refuses to answer questions about his special interest ties

A podcast of this interview is now online. Listen now at:  http://k003.kiwi6.com/hotlink/lckbr8zs0o/Newsmaker-BiggersTom-AndersonVoter.mp3

Hear the full show from Feb. 23, 2015 here: http://k003.kiwi6.com/hotlink/octrm252x1/ECMShow2-23-15.mp3



This interview originally aired Monday, February 23rd on KNJS 89.1 FM during our East County Magazine show which airs Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 5 p.m.. You can also listen live at www.knsj.org or download the TuneIn Ap to hear KNSJ on your cell phone.

By Miriam Raftery

February 22, 2015 (San Diego’s East County)—State Senator Joel Anderson (R-Alpine) has been endorsed by the County Republican Party for his candidacy challenging East County’s Dianne Jacob for her seat on the County Board of Supervisors next year.  But increasingly, media and constituents are raising serious questions about Anderson’s motives for running and his close ties to special interests—questions that Anderson has refused to answer.

Thomas Biggers is a constituent who voted for Anderson previously.  But after doing some research, he became concerned and visited Anderson’s local office. He asked four questions--which led Anderson's staffer to ban Biggers from the office:

SUPERVISOR HORN: 2015 WILL BE "YEAR OF THE VETERAN"

 

View video:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=fTobU9pt0ds

East County News Service

February 19, 2015 (San Diego)—Supervisor Bill Horn, Chairman of the San Diego County Board of Supervisors, declared 2015 the “year of the veteran” in his state of the county speech last week.

Horn said, “These men and women have made sacrifices that often take terrible tolls on their personal lives. As a county and as a community, we have a responsibility to take care of our veterans.”

An ex-Marine Corps officer and veteran, Horn said programs will be ramped up and new programs rolled out in the coming year.  One is the Vet Connect program being rolled out East County libraries, prompted by an East County Magazine special report that found a lack of veterans’ services in rural areas.

CONFIDENT OF LICKING CANCER, EMERALD TO RUN AGAIN

 

Photo: San Diego City Councilwoman Marti Emerald at Metropolitan Transit System board meeting, Feb. 12, 2015

By Donald H. Harrison

Reprinted with permission from San Diego Jewish World, a member of the San Diego Online News Network. Originally published on February 15, 2015.

February 17, 2015 (San Diego) – Confident of her recovery from breast cancer, for which she currently is undergoing radiation five days a week, City Councilwoman Marti Emerald says she plans to run in 2016 for another four-year term in part because she wants to protect the children of the 9th District against violence and future PTSD.

HELIX WATER TO HOLD WORKSHOP ON WATER RATE STRUCTURE FEB. 18

East County News Service

February 17, 2015 (La Mesa) – The Helix Water District Board meets Wednseday, February 18 at 2 p.m. (7811 University Ave., La Mesa).

The agenda includes a workshop on water rate structure cost of service. Oddly, as of Tuesday afternoon, the agenda packet did not include any details on a proposed water rate structure for the public to review prior to the meeting, raising questions over adequacy of public notice under the Ralph M. Brown Act.

CA STATE SENATE, IN UNANIMOUS VOTE, ASKS CONGRESS TO GIVE IMMIGRANTS A PATH TO CITIZENSHIP

 

East County News Service

February 17, 2015 (Sacramento)—A clear partisan divide separates Congress on immigration issues. But in a rare show of bipartisan unity, California’s State Senate unanimously approved a strongly worded resolution asking Congress to provide undocumented immigrants with a path to citizenship.

SOITEC BACKERS HOST FUNDRAISER FOR DAVE ROBERTS—AFTER ROBERTS CASTS VOTE FOR SOITEC

By Miriam Raftery

February 12, 2015 (San Diego's East County)--Six days after Supervisor Dave Roberts voted for the highly controversial Soitec industrial-scale solar projects in Boulevard which were approved 4-1 on February 4th,  he sent supporters an e-mail with an invitation to a fundraiser for his campaign at the La Jolla home of Jim Waring, co-founder of CleanTech San Diego.

Waring lobbied and testified on behalf of Soitec, which has a manufacturing facility in San Diego, at the Feb. 4th hearing.  Co-hosts of the fundraiser also include Jim Whalen, whose firm, J. Whalen and Associates, represents Sempra Energy and Hamann Companies. Hamann owns land on which the Soitec projects are slated to be built. Whalen, too, testified before Supervisors on February 4th and other occasions in favor of the Soitec projects.

These cozy ties raise a serious question: just how impartial was Roberts when casting a vote to scrape bare  more than 1,100 acres of habitat in East County including land along a scenic highway, putting a town’s groundwater supply at risk as two hydrologists have warned, and increasing fire danger with an unmitigatable fire risk as Supervisor Dianne Jacob observed?  Whose interests was Roberts really representing?

LAKESIDE PLANNING GROUP ELECTS NEW OFFICERS

 

 

 

February 6, 2015 (Lakeside) – At its meeting this week, Lakeside Community Planning Group elected new officers for 2015.

GRAND JURY PROPOSES CHANGES TO COMPENSATION OF CITY OF SAN DIEGO ELECTED OFFICIALS

 

February 3, 2015 (San Diego) - In the above titled report issued today, the 2014/15 San Diego County Grand Jury found that the process mandated by the San Diego City Charter for setting the salary for the Mayor and Councilmembers is fundamentally flawed. Once every two years, a citizens’ group, the Salary Setting Commission, recommends an appropriate salary for the Mayor and members of the City Council. Councilmembers must then vote to accept, reduce, or reject that recommendation.

SUPERVISORIAL RACE KICKS OFF EARLY

 

Could Senator Joel Anderson challenge Jacob in 2016?

East County News Service

February 1, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) -- Supervisor Dianne Jacob has announced plans to seek reelection in 2016 for what would be her final term of office, under term limits approved by voters.

BILL TO PREVENT VETERANS' SUICIDES PASSES SENATE

 

By Miriam Raftery

February 3, 2015 (San Diego's East County) - It’s rare for members of  Congress to agree on anything these days. .Both both the House and Senate voted unanimously to approve the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act.  The measure now heads to President Obama’s desk for signature.

LAKESIDE PLANNING GROUP AGENDA FOR FEB. 4 MEETING

 

East County News Service

February 2, 2015 (Lakeside)  The Lakeside Planning Group meets February 4th at 6:30 p.m. at the Lakeside Community Center (9841 Vine St. in Lakeside).

HOUSE PASSES 10 BILLS TO COMBAT HUMAN TRAFFICKING

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 29, 2015 (San Diego) – It’s rare for both parties in Congress to agree on anything these days.  But the House of Representatives has just approved 10 bills to help combat human trafficking.  All five of San Diego’s Congressional representatives voted in favor of two of the bills and the rest passed by voice vote without a roll call of members.

CHANGES ON HORIZON FOR GROSSMONT CENTER & VICINITY

 

By Miriam Raftery; Kristin Kjaero contributed to this story

Big changes could soon be coming to Grossmont Center

January 28, 2015 (La Mesa)--At the La Mesa City Council meeting on Tuesday night January 27th, Steve Cushman  gave a presentation  regarding the future of the regional shopping mall and surrounding properties owned by the Cushman family.

A 50-year lease with developers of the shopping center expired in mid-January and now the shopping mall and adjacent properties are reverting back to the Cushman family.  That includes 125 acres, extending beyond the mall itself to many surrounding sites.

HOUSE INDEFINITELY POSTPONES BORDER ACT

 

By Hayden Parsley

January 28, 2015 (Washington D.C.) - Leaders of the United States House of Representatives have decided to postpone a vote on the “Secure Our Borders Act.” Otherwise known as H.R. 399, the bill was called for by Republicans and would require the Border Agency to stop all illegal border crossings within five years or be penalized.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT REPORT

 

 

East County News Service

January 25, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) – Here are some of the most important items on agendas of our local boards, commissions and councils this week in San Diego’s East County.

CAMPO-LAKE MORENA PLANNING GROUP TO VOTE MONDAY ON STAR RANCH

East County News Service

January 24, 2016 (Campo)—The Campo Lake Morena Planning Group meets Monday evening at 7 p.m.  The agenda includes a staff update and vote on the latest version of the Star Ranch plan.  Officers will be elected and vacancies on the board filled.  In addition planners will discuss concerns raised by Boulevard and Jacumba planners over the addition of large battery storage facilities at the proposed Soitec Solar project.

To view the full agenda, click “read more” and scroll down.

PRESIDENT LAYS OUT POPULIST PLANS TO HELP MIDDLE CLASS IN STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS

 

By Hayden Parsley

Note: Full text of the President's speech is posted below this story.

President Barack Obama delivered his State of the Union Address this Tuesday. With the eyes of the nation on Washington, he focused on middle class economics. His main goals are child care, labor, education, and healthcare. President Obama called on Congress and the American people to advance these goals.

He also cited his administration’s accomplishments, including ending the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as implementing policies that he says resulted in “the fastest economic growth in over a decade, our deficits cut by two-thirds, a stock market that has doubled, and health care inflation at its lowest rate in 50 years.”

Still, he acknowledged that middle class families are struggling, and proposed solutions.

REPUBLICAN RESPONSE TO STATE OF UNION OFFERS SHARP CONTRAST TO PRESIDENT’S VISION

By Miriam Raftery

January 21, 2015 (Washington D.C.) – The official Republican Party response to President Barack Obama’s State of the Union speech was delivered by Senator Joni Ernst of Iowa, a mother and  Lieutenant Colonel in the Army National Guard.

Ernst stated that “rather than respond to a speech, I’d like to talk about your priorities.” She said the newly elected Republican majority in Congress “understands how difficult these past six years have been” citing economic concerns and “frustration with Washington’s dysfunction.”

She then laid out priorities of the Republican party, casting clear differences for voters between the President’s goals and those of the GOP Congress.

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