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February 2009 Articles




DON QUIXOTE FIGHTS THE WINDMILLS—AND SO DO THE FOLKS IN BOULEVARD

by Gayle Early

(photo by Miriam Raftery)

February 10, 2009 (Campo)--Editor’s Note: Should wind turbines hundreds of feet tall –higher than the existing Kumeyaay wind farm turbines—be allowed in the rural McCain Valley/Boulevard region in East County? Does the nation’s critical need for “green” energy outweigh the concerns of residents seeking to preserve the rural character of their backcountry communities? With new industrial-scale wind farms proposed across America, East County Magazine’s Gayle Early set out on a quest to explore these issues in depth for our three-part series on wind energy.

PART I: BACKCOUNTRY RESIDENTS BATTLE SPANISH WIND GIANT

As they were talking, they saw thirty or forty of the windmills found in that countryside, and as soon as Don Quixote caught sight of them, he said to his squire:

“Good fortune is guiding our affairs better than we could have desired, for there you see, friend Sancho Panza, thirty or more enormous giants with whom I intend to do battle and whose lives I intend to take, and with the spoils we shall begin to grow rich, for this is righteous warfare, and it is a great service to God to remove so evil a breed from the face of the earth.”

FEB. 25 HEARING ON WIND TURBINES & WIND TESTING

Lost Highways 018_edited.jpg

February 2009 (San Diego)--The County Board of Supervisors will deliberate February 25 whether to ease permitting requirements for installing industrial-scale meteorological testing units (MET towers) on private and county properties. The county is also debating the turbine ordinance to allow for more options, such as industrial-scale turbines on private property or more than one turbine per lot, including the smaller scale turbines.

LA MESA SAVES FLAG DAY PARADE: DONATIONS ROLL IN FROM RESIDENTS, BUSIENSSES AND CIVIC LEADERS

Shannon O'Dunn

February 9, 2009 (Mesa) “ Thanks to the generosity of La Mesa citizens, business leaders and elected officials who donated out of their own pockets, La Mesa’s annual flag day parade has been saved from the budget chopping block. The 14th annual event will take place on Saturday,

“We met the goal and then some,” an e-mail signed by Council members Ernest Ewin and David Allan stated. “Thank you, Shannon O’Dunn for your leadership in this effort.” O’Dunn (photo), a La Mesa resident, ran for La Mesa Council in the last election.

ART SALE FEB. 14: HERITAGE OF AMERICAS MUSEUM AT CUYAMACA COLLEGE

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Five East County artists will help raise money for the Heritage of the Americas Museum with an art sale from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 14 at the museum, located on the campus of Cuyamaca College, 12110 Cuyamaca College Dr. West, in El Cajon. Admission is free.

PROP L SPARKS DEBATE AT LA MESA OPEN FORUM MEETING

Art Madrid.jpeg

By Yuliana Cerda

February 6, 2009 (La Mesa) -- The La Mesa City Council held an open forum meeting in the auditorium at Rolando Elementary School last Thursday night. The meetings are meant to provide an opportunity for citizens to voice concerns or input on issues throughout their city. La Mesa citizens voiced their views on an array of issues ranging from proposed cuts in police and fire budgets to road maintenance.

OUR GUIDE TO THE MOST ROMANTIC RESTAURANTS TO TAKE YOUR SWEETHEART ON VALENTINE'S DAY

By Miriam Raftery

February 7, 2009 — Where are the sweetest spots to savor a romantic Valentine's dinner for two in San Diego's eastern region?

East County Magazine's restaurant reviewers, staff and editors have teamed up to offer these recommendations for places that offer not only fabulous food, but a cozy ambience ideal for wining and dining your sweetheart this Valentine's Day.

SEX EDUCATION? HELIX DEFENDS ITS ACTIONS, DISPUTES REPORT RELEASED BY DISTRICT THAT CRITICIZED HELIX ADMINISTRATOR'S RESPONSE TO SEXUAL ABUSE, MISCONDUCT;

BOARD TO CONSIDER CHARTER SCHOOL CURE CORRECT ORDERS AT FEB. 12 MEETING

February 6, 2009 (La Mesa) Did administrators at Helix Charter High School respond appropriately to four incidents of sexual abuse and misconduct involving teachers and students and has enough been done to prevent similar problems in the future? The Grossmont Union-High School Governing Board will consider these questions and review conflicting findings from two reports in closed session followed by open public testimony at the February 12 GUHSD Board meeting.

CIRCUS VARGAS PRESENTS 40TH ANNIVERSARY SHOW: BIG TOP COMES TO EL CAJON FEB. 19-23

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February 7, 2009 (El Cajon) -- Circus Vargas will present dazzling and death-defying feats in its 40th anniversary production, coming to El Cajon February 19th-23rd in the Parkway Plaza parking lot. Acrobats, clowns, magical illusionists, horses, motorcycles, music and dance are among the entertainment slated.

Early-birds will be treated to a preview show in which children of all ages will be invited into the center ring to experience life under the Big Top and received a crash course in circus skills such as juggling, feather balancing and hula-hooping.

Reflections on the Meaning of Christianity and Religious Symbols: A Reaction to the Mt Soledad Cross Controversy

By Joel A. Harrison

February 6, 2009 (San Diego) — In a 20-year saga that
never ends, according to an article in the Union-Tribune on January 8, "opponents of the
cross atop Mount Soledad urged a U.S. appeals court yesterday to overturn a
federal judge's ruling in July that said the controversial La Jolla landmark
could remain." A similar controversy in East County several years ago
was resolved when a cross atop Mt. Helix was transferred from public ownership
to a private group of area homeowners. (Privatization is not
an appropriate option for Soledad, since the site is a U.S. military memorial.) Instead
of rehashing the Constitutional pros and cons, I would like to reflect a moment
on my view of the meaning of Christianity - and the most appropriate monuments
to faith and humanity.

Good Money - What You Need to Know if You've Been Laid Off

Your guide to profitable and socially responsible investing
By Judith L. Seid, CFP ®

It's
your worst nightmare. You come into work thinking it's just like any other
day and you leave with your stomach in knots. Fears of how you will take care
of yourself and your family's spin your head around. Here are some tips
to help calm your anxiety and start you on the path to recovery from such a
blow.

SYLVIA'S SOAPBOX -- SNAP

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Food Stamps are a "SNAP."
But Not in San Diego County

By Sylvia Hampton

Sylvia's SoapboxFebruary
1, 2009 (San Diego) —
After the embarrassing front-page news
that San Diego County has only one in five people who need food supplements
enrolled to receive them (the worst enrollment record of any county in the
nation) the supervisors are finally paying attention. They voted to find ways
to streamline and improve access to the food supplement program and county
administrators will report back to the board within 90 days with changes that
can be made.

FILNER REINTRODUCES FAIR TAXES FOR SENIORS ACT

February 1, 2009 (San Diego) — Congressman Bob Filner has reintroduced the
Fair Taxes for Seniors Act, H.R. 674, which will provide a one-time increase
in the capital gains tax exemption on the sale of a home for citizens who are
50 years of age or more.

"The Fair Taxes for Seniors Act would give many seniors the additional money
they need for nursing home care, medical costs, and other retirement expenses,"
stated Filner, a Democrat whose district includes southern portions of East
County as well as San Diego's South Bay area. "As a result, family members
and, in many cases, the government will be relieved of the burden of caring
for these individuals as they grow older."

STATE DEPARTMENT CANCELS BLACKWATER'S CONTRACT IN IRAQ: EAST COUNTY LEADERS, BLACKWATER WEST VP SHARE REACTIONS

Jan Hedlun, right, at victory celebration last year after
Blackwater dropped plans to build a training base in Potrero.

February 1, 2009 (San Diego's East County) —--"Blackwater has been fired
by the State Department from its job protecting U.S. diplomats in Iraq," ABC
News has reported. The U.S. State Department has announced
it will not renew a $1.2 billion contract for Blackwater's Iraqi operations
after Iraq refused to license the U.S. firm. Iraqi officials cited "lingering
outrage" over September 2007 shootings by Blackwater guards that killed 17
civilians in Iraq's Nisour Square. In East County, leaders who
fought to keep Blackwater from opening a training camp in Potrero greeted the
news with cautious optimism, while Blackwater Vice President Brian Bonfiglio
defended the company's record.

"Huzzah!!!!!! Miracles do happen!" Jan Hedlun, Potrero Planning Group
member who led her town's battle to oust Blackwater, stated in an e-mail to
East County Magazine. But she added, "Although we know this is not the demise
of Blackwater, persay, or companies like them, it is gratifying to know that
their mask has been lifted and they have been seen for what they are. And
though they continue to try to fly under the radar of public scrutiny and the
transparency promised is still not forthcoming, now we are aware of the danger
inherent in our ignorance." Hedlun cited a quote by James Thurber: "Let
us not look back in anger or forward in fear, but around in awareness."

SDG&E THREATENS TO SUE WILDFIRE VICTIMS

Fires--photos from LM 081_edited.jpg

By Miriam Raftery

February 2, 2009 (San Diego's East County)--San Diego Gas & Electric Company has notified attorneys representing fire victims that the utility company plans to sue victims of the 2007 wildfires. The announcement has sparked an angry response from some elected officials and residents in burned-out areas of East County.

"Predictably, SDG&E's lawyers are stooping as low as possible and attempting to blame victims for the utility's failure to maintain its own system," Supervisor Dianne Jacob told East County Magazine. "It is a callous legal strategy but one that's not surprising coming from the same people pushing the tragically flawed Sunrise Powerlink."

FESTIVALS OF THE MONTH: FEBRUARY 2009

By Miriam Raftery

February 1, 2009 (San Diego's East County) — Winter's chill is past--time to
step out in the sunshine and savor some of the many fun-filled events this
month in San Diego's eastern regions. Find details on all of these events and
more. Just click the calendar
link
at the top of our homepage!

This is the prime season to visit Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, where a
wealth of activities are slated in February--from a desert night sky lecture
on Feb. 6th to Archeology Weekend on the 21st-22nd and a hike through slots,
vistas and side canyons on the 28th.

LA MESA HOSTS 2 TOWNHALL MEETINGS & BUDGET WORKSHOP

La Mesa City Hall

February 1, 2009 (La Mesa) -- As part of La Mesa's commitment to staying in touch with the community, the City Council has scheduled two Town Hall Meetings for 2009. These open forum meetings provide an opportunity for citizens to provide input on issues in their neighborhood and throughout the City. The two meetings are held in different parts of the City to give all residents a chance to participate. The City Council encourages all who are interested in the present and future of La Mesa to attend and provide their ideas, comments, and opinions. Information gathered from these meetings will be used by staff and the Council to recommend and set priorities for the City's next budget.

Native American News - Feb 1, 2009

rainbow

Local and national news of interest to the Native American community

OBAMA REACHING OUT TO NATIVE AMERICANS

February 9, 2009 (CNN)--President Barack Obama intends to add a senior policy adviser for Native American affairs to his White House staff shortly, first lady Michelle Obama revealed Monday.
The first lady made the announcement while speaking to employees at the Interior Department--the latest stop in her ongoing meet-and-greet tour of federal departments and agencies.
http://cnnwire.blogs.cnn.com/2009/02/09/obama-reaching-out-to-native-ame...

ECONOMIC RECOVERY INCLUDES $2.8 BILLION FOR INDIAN COUNTRY

January 28, 2009 (Kumeyaay.com) -- Indian Country could benefit from a $2.8 billion boost as part of a national economic stimulus package making its way through Capitol Hill.
The amount is only a small part of the $825 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act that is heading to the Senate floor. It's also far less than the $6.12 billion that the National Congress of American Indians sought in Congressional testimony on January 15.

But key Senators hailed the inclusion as a positive step in ensuring American Indians and Alaska Natives aren't left out of the nation's economic stimulus. "Nowhere in this nation are jobs and construction improvements more needed than on American Indian reservations,"said Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-North Dakota), the chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee.
"Tribal communities suffer 50% unemployment rates and longstanding construction needs," added Dorgan, whose committee had recommended $3.8 billion for Indian Country.

Full story:
http://www.kumeyaay.com/2009/01/economic-recovery-includes-28-billion-fo...

SILVANNA OSUNA HEART FUNDRAISER DINNER

January 30, 2009 Kumeyaay.com)--Silvanna Osuna was recently dianosed with heart failure. She has a pacemaker installed to make her strong enough for a bypass. Silvanna has lived her life for Indian people by serving as an ICWA Caseworker for over 25 years and now is serving her own Tribe as a Gaming Commissioner. The family is very grateful to you for attending and for all donations.

February 7th at Santa Ysabel
Bird Singers and Blessing at 6 pm
Dinner - $12.00 Per Person

Full story:
http://www.kumeyaay.com/2009/01/silvanna-osuna-heart-fundraiser-dinner/#...

RANCHO SAN DIEGO RESTAURANT INFURIATES CHAINS BY GIVING AWAY HUNDREDS OF FREE MEALS

By Miriam Raftery

February
1, 2009 (Rancho San Diego) —
We have seen many types of restaurant promotions
to grab our attention. However, Brenda Nason, owner of Bistro D'Vine in Rancho
San Diego, simply takes the cake. Her goal is to give one free meal to
every household in the Rancho San Diego area that has not already been to her
restaurant.

HAWK WATCH 2009

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February 1, 2009 (Ramona)--Each Saturday in February from 9 a.m to noon, the public is invited to visit the Ramona Grasslands with the Wildlife Research Institute, Inc. for a free educational program. You will see raptors such as the Golden Eagle, the wintering Ferruginous Hawk, the Red-tailed Hawk, Prairie Falcon and the Red-shouldered Hawk. Nineteen (19) species of raptors alone have been recorded at this Raptor Hotspot.

The Rolling Reviewer: Show Me the Money! Wait, Bring It Back!

Janelle EckhartFebruary 1, 2009 (San Diego) — The tide of economic prosperity seems to be in the ebb-phase of the cycle as insecurity and doubt flows swiftly in, and millions of job-seekers are finding themselves in strange and unsettling waters. For thousands of disabled individuals eager to enter the workforce -- whether for the first time or after a leave of absence -- the seas can be especially treacherous.

SIMPLE WISDOM -- Are you having trouble keeping your New Year's Resolutions?

Trouble keeping resolutions?

By Penelope Young Andrade

Penelope Young AndradeFebruary 1, 2009 (San Diego) — Are you having trouble keeping your New Year's
Resolutions? For many, February finds you slinking back to old habits. You
hate and berate yourself for being ˜weak willed" but can't find a way to resist
temptation. The problem, typically, is not that you're weak willed, but rather
that you haven't found a way to use your will skillfully.

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