Carlton Hills Elementary School receives $5,000 grant; State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O’Connell joins tribal leaders at presentation
By Miriam Raftery
September 22, 2010 (Santee) – “Education is the foundation of our future. I urge you to get as much of it as you can,” Barona tribal chairman Edwin “Thorpe” Romero told schoolchildren at Carlton Hills Elementary School in Santee this morning. “My tribe, the Barona band of Mission Indians, and I are thankful that we are able to support your school.”
Romero presented principal Terry Heck with a check for $5,000 – surpassing the one million dollar mark for the Barona Education Grant program statewide.
August 23, 2010 (Sacramento) – Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-El Cajon) announced today that his AB 1506, a measure that would require the state to accept its own IOUs in payment for state taxes or fees, has passed both houses of the Legislature and is now on the Governor’s desk.
Bans county and city officials from letting relatives use cars or credit cards
August 17, 2010 (Sacramento) – Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has signed Assembly bill 1399 into law. The measure, authored by Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-El Cajon), prohibits local elected officials from allowing family members to use publicly owned vehicles or credit cards.
East County News Service
August 1, 2010 (Sacramento)--Assembly Bill 1506, the "IOU Taxpayer Protection Bill" authored by Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-El Cajon) will be heard on Monday, August 2 in the Senate Appropriations Committee.
“As the State's cash flow situation continues to deteriorate, California is once again in danger of issuing IOU's to its businesses and citizens. AB 1506 will protect taxpayers from the state's forced borrowing,” Anderson said.
“I am persuaded that this project will not be built. It was conceived in secrecy ….sold with misleading information.” – Stephen Volker, attorney
Anonymous donor pledges to match donations for legal battle up to $20,000
June 24, 2010 (Alpine) – A standing-room-only crowd of around 700 people packed into the Alpine Community last night, where Supervisor Dianne Jacob and the Protect Our Communities Foundation convened a meeting for the public to provide input on SDG&E’s proposal to route Sunrise Powerlink through the Cleveland National Forest. No representatives were present from the U.S. Forest Service or SDG&E.
Many public officials and candidates for office came out in opposition to the project—while others were conspicuous by their absence or failure to take a stance.
The public has until June 29 to submit comments to Forest Supervisor William Metz. You may submit your comments online at firstname.lastname@example.org and include the subject line “Sunrise Powerlink Comments” or call to leave recorded comments at (858)673-6180.
Story and photos by Miriam Raftery
June 11, 2010 (Sacramento) - The California State Senate unanimously passed Assembly Concurrent Resolution 131, which grants historic designation to the portion of Highway 94 from Jamacha Road in Rancho San Diego to the junction with Historic Route 80. Authored by Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-El Cajon), the Resolution previously passed the Assembly and is now law.
June 9, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – In a an error reminiscent of the infamous “Dewey Defeats Truman” headline, the Valley News reported that Jeff Stone won the Republican primary for the 36th State Senate seat. That’s because the district spans both Riverside and San Diego Counties---and the chagrined publisher apparently only checked the Riverside results, the conservative blog Flash Report revealed today.
In fact, Anderson leads by a hefty total of 6,810 votes with all precincts in both counties counted--though tens of thousands or more absentee and provisional ballots remain to be tallied.
June 8, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – Voters gave Assemblyman Joel Anderson a victory in his quest for State Senate, despite a campaign finance scandal that has dogged his race. With 38% of precincts counted, Anderson has a hefty 45.33% of the vote, leading Riverside Supervisor Jeff Stone with 24.83%, veteran Kenneth Dickson with 20.16%, and Rev. Greg Stephens with 9.68%.
By Buck Shott
June 7, 2010 – With Election Day tomorrow, last-minute endorsements and attacks are rolling out. Here’s a wrap-up on the latest political wrangling on the campaign trail:
Update: Watch full video of the debate now posted here in 8 parts: http://www.youtube.com/user/EastCountyMagazine (on right, or click direct link to this debate:
By Miriam Raftery
June 3, 2010 (El Cajon ) – Seven candidates for state legislative offices fielded questions and presented their views at a candidate forum sponsored by the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce Tuesday and moderated by former TV news anchor Vic Salazar at the Elks Lodge in El Cajon. Candidates clashed on views over how to turn the economy around and bring jobs to East County, with visions that ranged from slashing taxes to specific plans for actively bringing green manufacturing jobs to our region.
Local Republicans vote “no” on measures to help local college students
June 3, 2010 (Sacramento) -- The California State Assembly has approved two bills by Assemblymember Marty Block (D-Lemon Grove) that would change an admissions policy change at San Diego State University (SDSU) which denied admission to 1,740 local students who met all CSU requirements. AB 2402 calls for increased transparency when California State University (CSU) campuses change admissions policies that affect local students. AB 2401 would formally reinstate local admissions priority for CSU campuses to students in the region who meet admissions requirements.
San Diego County Democratic legislators Marty Block, Mary Salas, and Lori Saldaña voted for the measures. Assembly Republicans Joel Anderson, Martin Garrick, Kevin Jeffries and Diane Harkey voted against the bills, which will provide opportunities for more local students to attend college and save money while living at home.
"There was no money laundering...I'm endorsed by the Deputy Sheriffs, police, the CHP. Do you think they would endorse me if I was a money launderer?" - Assemblyman Joel Anderson
May 28, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-El Cajon) has been dogged by the whiff of scandal since the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) fined his campaign $20,000 for accepting five contributions over the legal limit of $3,900 per individual.
Opponents and some media reports have made references to money-laundering. For months, Anderson has said little on the matter, on the advice of attorneys. But in a phone call with ECM editor Miriam Raftery today, Anderson flatly denied any intentional wrongdoing and defended his integrity.
By Buck Shott
May 28, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – With just 10 days until the June 8 primary, hit pieces are out in droves--like killer bees swarming to finish off hapless victims. As usual, there’s a fair amount of truth-stretching going on. Greatest “hits” of the season include:
Local Assemblyman says bill will save high-paying jobs; fiscal impact weighed
May 12, 2010 (Sacramento) - Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-El Cajon) has introduced AB 2278, which will be heard in the Assembly Revenue and Taxation Committtee. “By giving tax credits to California businesses in research and development, AB 2278 will help stop the hemorrhaging of California jobs,” Anderson said in an e-mail to local business leaders. But whether legislators will approve a tax cut when the state faces a $20 billion budget deficit remains uncertain.
A round-up of national, state and local political news
By Buck Shott
April 22, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week in the political arena, Jerry Brown came out swinging against Meg Whitman, Republicans duke it out for the 36th State Senate race, and Democrats endorse candidates at their state party convention.
April 15, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – Incumbent Assemblyman Joel Anderson’s decision to run for the State Senate creates an open seat. Three local Republicans want the job –and they are facing off in the June primary. Two of the candidates, Brian Jones and Bill Wells, are elected council members in Santee and El Cajon. The third, Christine Rubin, is an educator and political communications strategist who has worked many campaigns including the McCain-Palin ticket. The winner in June’s primary will vie against Democrat Mark Hanson, an educator, business and nonprofit leader who formerly ran for State Senate, in the November election.
To learn more about the three Republican contenders, click on their photos below. Hanson, who is running unopposed in the Democratic primary, has not yet established a website or campaign materials. ECM will profile Hanson in a future issue.
"I believe that it is the duty of government to diminish itself to the point that the people are not burdened by taxes. It is the duty of elected officials to force the government to restrict itself to the functions of protecting the people and providing the necessary infrastructure for people to thrive. " -- Bill Wells
By Miriam Raftery
April 15, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – Less than two years after winning election to the El Cajon Council, conservative Bill Wells is running for the 77th Assembly seat being vacated by Joel Anderson. (Anderson is running for the State Senate). Wells is among three candidates in the Republican primary in June, along with Santee Vice Mayor Brian Jones and Christine Rubin, educator and political communications professional. The winner will face off against Democrat Mark Hanson in the November election.
If successful in winning election, Wells will leave an open seat which will be filled via appointment of his successor by the remaining El Cajon Council members.
By Assemblyman Joel Anderson
March 31, 2010 (San Diego's East County) -- A Fresno businessman, Alan Jurkonis, moved his company to Minden, Nevada last year because he said operating in California was like "death by a thousand cuts." For Mr. Jurkosis, it was far cheaper to ship his product from Nevada to Southern California than from Fresno to Southern California.
By Assemblyman Joel Anderson
March 2, 2010 (Sacramento)--The RGP Prosthetic Research Center, a San Diego company that provides artificial limbs for California Children's Services, is in danger of having to stop providing these critical services for children in need... again.
I recently spoke with Mr. Thomas Guth, the company's President. Guth is understandably worried. Last Monday, California State Controller John Chiang warned the legislature and Governor that unless they found "cash solutions" by March, California would be unable to pay its bills. A grim reality looms ominously above California taxpayers once again - IOUs.
January 25, 2010 (San Diego) – Ten out of 11 local legislators made the California Small Business Association Honor Roll for 2009, in recognition of their voting records to protect the interests of small businesses. Conspicuously absent from the list was State Senator Dennis Hollingsworth (R-Murrieta), whose district encompasses the bulk of East County.
By Miriam Raftery, Editor
December 27, 2009 – We’ve made our list and checked it twice, finding out who’s been naughty or nice. Below is our list of “naughty newsmakers” who made headlines for antics that were seamy, steamy, or just plain unseemly. Some of these folks from San Diego’s eastern region accomplished good deeds in their careers before finding themselves in hot water, making one wonder: just what were they thinking? For those who made this year’s “naughty” list—from Tiger Woods’ mistress to ethically challenged politicians to a dethroned beauty queen--we couldn’t resist also offering some good-spirited advice for New Year’s resolutions.
By Miriam Raftery
December 17, 2009 (El Cajon) – The California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) has fined Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-Alpine) $20,000 for soliciting and accepting donations over legal limits. The FPPC also fined the Fresno Central Committee $29,000 for laundering money from major Anderson donors including Hamann Construction family members, Sycuan and Barona Indian bands, then funneling hefty sums back into Anderson’s campaign coffers. Anderson has since returned more than $100,000 in donations.
Fines were levied shortly after Anderson’s annual holiday party last week, where he posed for photos with hundreds of constituents. Outside the party, protesters used a loudspeaker to inform party-goers of the controversy, carrying signs that read “Jail Joel” and calling for the Assemblyman to resign.
Protest planned outside over donation controversy
December 8, 2009 – Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-El Cajon) invites constituents to his annual open house from 6 to 8 p.m. tonight at his offices at 500 Fesler Street, Suite 201, in El Cajon. Guests will be offered hors d’hoeuvres and refreshments as well as an opportunity to meet their legislator and have a photo taken with him. In the past, the event has drawn hundreds of visitors.
By Miriam Raftery
December 3, 2009 (San Diego’s East County) – California’s Fair Political Practices commission staff has recommended that Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-Alpine) pay a $20,000 fine for collecting campaign donations that violated state law. Anderson has already refunded around $150,000 in donations made by non-local Republican Central Committees that funneled money received from major donors in San Diego County including SDG&E, Hamann Construction family members, and the Barona Band of Mission Indians.
November 30, 2009 -- East County Roundup includes the most important stories about San Diego's eastern regions, or stories relevant to our readers, that are published by other media. Top stories from the past month include:
- Bilbray Billing Bilbray: North County Congress member pays his wife from campaign coffers
- SD Retailers Pleased with Early Black Friday Results
- 70% of Local Sex Offenders Live Too Close to Parks, Schools
- Thrift Store to Leave Downtown El Cajon
- Anderson Defends Mailer Touting Bill
- 'They're Looking at Impending Doom' - If California exacts the worst possible cuts on schools, San Diego Unified literally has no idea how it can balance its budget.
- Bankruptcy an Option, Says Mayor's Fiscal Task Force
- Cuyamaca College Names Its New President
- San Diego State Athletic Director Jeff Schemmel Resigns Amid Controversy
- Potrero Preschool Reopens After 2007 Harris Fire
By Miriam Raftery
November 23, 2009 – After learning of the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) investigation into Assemblyman Joel Anderson 's finances and hearing that Anderson (R-Alpine) returned some $100,000 in donations of questionable legality, East County Magazine submitted a public records request to his office. We asked to see correspondence between Anderson, his staff, and major donors implicated in an alleged scheme to bypass campaign finance laws.
But our Assemblyman has concluded that the public should not see any corresponndence between his office and major donors implicated in his campaign finance scandal.
2 GOP OFFICIALS RESIGN OVER ANDERSON CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTIONS CONTROVERSY; EAST COUNTY ASSEMBLYMAN REMAINS MUM ON SUBJECT
By Miriam Raftery
November 18, 2009 (San Diego’s East County) – A biography of Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-Alpine) has been removed from his official Assembly website. But an archived copy reads, “The proof of Joel Anderson’s total commitment to honesty, integrity, and hard work aren’t in what he says. They’re in what he’s already done—the record of accomplishment he’s already achieved.”
Anderson has remained silent, however, regarding serious questions raised over the honesty and integrity of his own campaign finances—including the core question of what he knew about a series of potentially illegal transactions.
HOW DID YOUR LEGISLATOR VOTE ON CONSUMER ISSUES? HOLLINGSWORTH RANKS 2ND WORST IN LEGISLATURE; SALDANA RANKS 100%
November 18, 2009 (San Diego’s East County) – Legislators representing astern areas in San Diego County got mixed scores from Consumer Federation of California's 2009 scorecard for California lawmakers. The scorecard ranks state Senators and Assemblymembers for votes to protect consumers on issues including food safety, identity theft, health care reform, toxics, false advertising, real estate lending reform, and deceptive insurance industry practices.
By Miriam Raftery
October 8, 2009 (San Diego’s East County)—The California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) has launched an investigation into allegations that Assemblyman Joel Anderson’s campaign may have received funds funneled illegally through the Fresno County Republican Central Committee. (Read details.) Anderson (R-Alpine) has announced plans to run for the State Senate.
The news sparked heated comments from Simon Mayeski, a state board member of Common Cause, a citizens watchdog organization committed to holding government officials accountable for their actions and encouraging citizen participation. “It is extremely discouraging that the constant need to raise campaign dollars now places Joel Anderson, my very own Assembly representative, under the investigative eye of the FPPC,” Mayeski, a San Diego resident, told East County Magazine. “It is even worse that he is under investigation because of the Commission’s own decision, and not by complaint of another politician.”
October 8, 2009 (San Diego’s East County)—AB 1046, authored by Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-Alpine) has passed both houses of the Legislature unanimously and is now on the Governor’s desk. If enacted, would protect homeowners from having their home seized by creditors as payment for debt that is unrelated to their mortgage.
“Hard times can fall on anyone and it is important to have basic legal protections for their greatest investment - their life savings,” Anderson said.