May 21, 2013 (Lakeside) – KSON radio will be at the Lakeside Park and Ride at Highway 67 and Mapleview tomorrow from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. collecting donations to help tornado victims in Moore, Oklahoma.
Local residents are invited to drive through and drop off cash donations. Everyone who donates will also be entered in a contest to win two tickets to Taylor Swift’s sold-out concert August 15.
San Diego search dog aids in search for survivors
By Miriam Raftery
May 20, 2013 (San Diego) – One of the worst tornadoes in recorded history has ravaged the Okalahoma City suburb of Moore, killing at least 51 people, injuring 120 including many children, and destroying 500 homes. The two-mile-wide twister destroyed an elementary school and entire neighborhoods nearby.
Eight Search Dog Foundation rescue teams have been dispatched to search the rubble for survivors. One of the search dogs, George, was recruited from Labradors and Friends Dog Rescue Group in San Diego.
By Sholeh Sisson
May 17 2013 (San Diego)-- On May 15, the San Diego Board of Supervisors unanimously approved an ordinance waiving building permit and plan review fees for disabled veterans who need home modifications to accommodate their disabilities.
"We are always looking for ways to improve the lives of those who risk their lives to protect our country," said Supervisor Dianne Jacob, who introduced the measure along with Supervisor Bill Horn.
By Nadin Abbott
May 12, 2013 (El Cajon)—California Governor Edmund G. Brown declared the past week “Wildfire Awareness Week.” On Thursday, the top brass fromr Cal-Fire and San Diego Sheriff’s Department addressed the media. ECM also spoke with Lakeside Division Chief R. Laff.
All officials are urging San Diego residents who live in the urban-rural interface, as well as rural areas to be ready for a severe fire season that’s started early. So far Cal Fire has responded to more than 1,100 wildfires already, which is 500 more than normal for this time of year. According to Cal Fire Chief Cal Fire Chief Dale Hutchinson, Southern Region Chief 40,000 acres burned last week.
Officials are urging residents to get ready and maintain 100-feet of defensible space. This is not optional; it is the law, as Chief Hutchinson told us, for those in the urban-wildland interface. Also clean your gutters, and other places where dry vegetation might accumulate. If you do any remodeling, look into the latest fire resistant materials. In addition, remove all tree branches that are within six feet of your home.
Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego confirms findings May 9; world’s top scientists call for action
By Miriam Raftery
May 10, 2013 (San Diego) -- Measurements around the world confirm that the rise in carbon dioxide levels have surpassed 400 parts per million –the highest in our planet’s history.
Before the industrial revolution in the 1900s, when coal and oil began to be burned on a large scale, C02 levels were never higher than 280 ppm.
But in recent years, the levels have risen 100 times faster than after the last ice age—providing clear evidence that the rise is far beyond any cyclical changes ever seen before. In fact, leading scientists around the world warn, climate change may soon be irreversible unless drastic changes are made to reduce this level to 350 ppm or lower.
May 11, 2013 (San Diego) – An armed gunman tried to abduct a women in the College area shortly after midnight According to an alert sent by San Diego State University police, the suspect approached the victim in the 5800 block of Linda Paseo at 12:18 a.m. and asked if she was alone. He displayed a black handgun and told the victim to “get in the car.”
She refused and was not injured. The suspect was last seen walking toward College Avenue. He may be driving a black Ford F-150. He is describe as a white, 6 feet 1 inches tall, wearing a blue T-shirt, blue jeans, a tan jacket, possibly white shoes, and rectangular glasses.
By Nadin Abbott
Photos Tom Abbott
May 8, 2013 (Jamul)—As part of the County’s efforts to consolidate rural fire departments, the San Diego Rural Fire Protection District was asked last night whether “it will continue to operate as an independent fire district or dissolve and become part of the new County Fire Authority (CFA).”
The County has given the District until June 30th to sign on a one-year contract that would extend the current contract with Cal-Fire, but ultimately would lead to the dissolution of the district under the Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO.)
The pending decision has sparked concerns among residents in the District, which is a high fire risk area that has seen some of the worst wildfires in our region. It is also the area where major new energy projects are proposed which would increase the risk of fire.
EAST COUNTY RESIDENTS ASK COUNTY’S TOP HEALTH OFFICIAL TO REVISE REPORT, RECOGNIZE SERIOUS HEALTH IMPACTS FROM WIND TURBINES
By Nadin Abbott and Sierra Robinson; Miriam Raftery also contributed to this report
“This is an epidemic and we need help.” – Rowena Elliott, Manzanita tribal member
(photos left, David and Rowena Elliott)
May 6, 2013 (San Diego) –At a press conference outside the county administration building today, backcountry residents living near wind turbines told the media of serious health conditions they are suffering. With Wednesday’s vote on a county wind ordinance looming, residents called on the county’s top health official, Wilma Wooten, to revise her report and recognize health concerns linked to wind turbines.
According to Donna Tisdale, President of the Boulevard Planning Group and founder of two community nonprofits, the vote is critical. Supervisors will “either sell us out, remove our human and property rights, or the Board (of Supervisors) will vote to protect the community.”
If that doesn't happen, residents are prepared to file suit, they said.
BACKCOUNTRY RESIDENTS TO HOLD PRESS CONFERENCE DOWNTOWN MONDAY TO OPPOSE WIND ORDINANCE AND BOULEVARD PLAN AMENDMENT
May 3, 2013 (San Diego)—On Monday, May 6 at 1 p.m., East County residents opposed to the proposed County Wind ordinance and Boulevard Plan amendment will hold a press conference outside the County Administration Center at 1600 Pacific Highway (by the fountain on the west side.)
“On May 8th, the Board of Supervisors will make a life-altering choice for rural East County residents and valued resources,” a press release sent by the Protect Our Communities Foundation and Backcountry Against Dumps. Supervisors must choose to either “sell out to the taxpayer-subsidized wind industry and developers and turn the ruggedly beautiful Boulevard/Jacumba area into an unnecessary industrial energy sacrifice zone and fire trap," the rural residents say, or"protect and defend the ratepayers and real people and resources in the predominantly low-income fire-prone area from expensive, unreliable, and dangerous industrial wind turbine projects and related web of electrical infrastructure.”
Speakers will include rural residents and a fire official speaking out on dangers posed by industrial wind projects in our region.
Program also benefits East County students learning solar installation
By Nadin Abbott
May 2, 2013 (San Diego)—Mayor Bob Filner, Sullivan Solar owner Daniel Sullivan and Paul Cleary of GRID Alternatives hosted a press conference today at the Martin household in Broadway Heights. It’s all part of a new partnership between the city, Sullivan and Grid Alternatives to put solar on the rooftop of low-income residents.
May 2, 2013 (San Diego's East County) -- A red flag warning is in effect today and tomorrow through 6 p.m. due to high fire danger from excessive heat, low humidity and high winds.
Cal-Fire has provided an update on fire activitity across the state, including a nearly 3,000-acre fire in RIverside County, as well as increased increased steps that Cal Fire is taking to ensure our region is prepared.
April 21, 2013 (San Diego) – San Diego State University (SDSU) police have issued an alert to warn students of a man who grabbed a woman, 20, who was walking in the south alley of 5600 Montezuma Road just off campus this morning at 3 a.m. The suspect is described as an Asian male, tall with spiked hair, in his mid-20s, wearing black-framed glasses, a white shirt and light jeans. He fled in a black four-door BMW toward Campanile Drive.
According to police, the suspect walked up to the victim, grabbed her arm and leg and attempted to pull her. She suffered no injuries and no weapon was used in the incident.
SIERRA CLUB WINS LAWSUIT ON COUNTY'S CLIMATE ACTION PLAN: JUDGE RULES “ENFORCEABLE MITIGATION MEASURES ARE NECESSARY NOW”
Exclusive to ECM: How decision could impact East County's transportation and energy production
By Miriam Raftery
April 20, 2013 (San Diego) – On the eve of Earth Day events, the Sierra Club has won a critical lawsuit challenging the County of San Diego’s Climate Action Plan (CAP). On April 19, Superior Court Judge Timothy Taylor issued his final ruling agreeing with the Sierra Club that the County’s Climate Action Plan “contains no enforcement mechanism for reducing GHG [greenhouse gas] emissions.”
The ruling could have significant consequences for East County, where numerous large wind and solar projects have been pushed through under the mantra of addressing climate change.
On one hand, the decision could bolster arguments of some Supervisors who view large energy projects as the fastest or easiest way to meet goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
On the other hand, the ruling also forces the County to conduct an Environmental Impact Report - opening up the process for public comment. That could include discussion of how much fossil fuel it takes to manufacture, build and operate industrial-scale wind and solar projects--and whether there are better alternatives, such as solar on roofs and parking lots in urban areas.
April 18, 2013 (San Diego) -- Mayor Bob Filner received a big thank you on Friday from a wounded Army veteran in desperate need of mobility. The Mayor secured a handcycle for Todd Fahn, who suffered severe injuries to his back from an explosion while serving in Iraq.
Fahn brought his son, Bentley, to meet the Mayor. Fahn says his new handcycle will allow him the mobility he needs to get around quickly, especially as the father of a toddler.
“I had come to a place of extreme frustration and the system was not working. I reached out to Mayor Bob Filner because of his many years of commitment to helping veterans in need and he delivered,” said Fahn. “Because of him, I have a device that helps me get around quickly and efficiently.”
April 17, 2013 (San Diego)--Today, the City of San Diego published Mayor Filner's proposal for medical cannabis regulation in the City of San Diego. The proposal is based on the recommendations of the medical marijuana taskforce, organized by City Council President Todd Gloria in 2010.
HAVE A SAY IN 2013-14 CITY BUDGET DECISIONS THAT IMPACT YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD: WEBINARS, TEACH-INS AND OTHER EVENTS SET
Budget decisions made by the San Diego Mayor and City Council over the next two months will directly impact neighborhoods and quality of life throughout the year starting July 1.
Local residents can have a say in those decisions. Collaborating with more than 30 local organizations of the Community Budget Alliance, the nonprofit Center on Policy Initiatives is offering a series of free events on understanding the budget process and effectively advocating for the services and infrastructure every neighborhood needs.
By Nadin Abbott
April 7, 2013 (San Diego)— ECM spoke with County Board of Education Board Member Greg Robinson today. He shared details on how extensive the face of poverty has become in the County and how this affects our children. He also spoke of sequestration cuts and why living wages matter.
“El Cajon has the highest rate of poverty in San Diego County,” Robinson observed, adding that poverty leads to serious problems of food insecurity as more people are going hungry.
By Nadin Abbott
Photos by Tom Abbott
April 9, 2013 (San Diego)—At the cusp of the U.S. Senate taking on immigration reform, the San Diego City Council today sent a bipartisan message to Washington. With a unanimous vote, the San Diego City Council passed a resolution asking for comprehensive, common sense, immigration reform. The partisan divide in Washington was not evident in San Diego, where Republicans joined their Democratic colleagues to stand united on this issue.
Council Member David Alvarez chaired the effort with Council Member Mark Kersey. Before the vote, Alvarez said, “The language is meant to send a message to Washington DC...This is a united message.” He noted that almost everybody is affected by this issue; immigration touches all of us.
Wind ordinance on agenda for May 9
April 8, 2013 (San Diego’s East County ) – On May 8, County Supervisors will hear a controversial wind ordinance that would make it easier to build wind turbines in some areas of East County.
But this Wednesday, April 10, the agenda will include a proposal by Supervisor Dianne Jacob for staff to develop a comprehensive renewable energy plan including options to integrate the proposed wind ordinance into a renewable energy plan, as well as examining options such as the San Diego Energy Foundation's proposal with emphasis on rooftop solar. Supervisors meet at 9 a.m. at the County Administration Center, 1600 Pacific Coast Highway in San Diego. If approved, staff would then have several weeks to come back with proposed language.
Below is the exact language from the agenda:
Frog race offers $10,000 first prize, all to benefit St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center
By Caprice Harrison
April 3, 2013 (El Cajon) – St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center in El Cajon will host its 15th annual, “Morning Glory Brunch- With a Country Flair” on Saturday, April 13 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. This special event is being held in the Center’s Organic Garden, located at 2119 East Madison Avenue, El Cajon. The event includes:
- Over 20 food and beverage stations from local restaurants
- Boutique shopping
- Live music and entertainment on multiple stages
- “Arts Alive!” floral creations by Jasmine Creek Florist
- The eighth-annual, “Frog Race” with $10,000 in cash prizes!
NEW features this year include: Children’s activities, arts and crafts, face-painting and a “Froggie Pond” with kid-friendly prizes! Each “froggie” is only $5 or, three (3) for $10. Each “frog” is $100 or $150 for two (2).
March 27, 2013
Complete Release and Season Statistics - SDSU Athletics
WHAT'S ON TAP THIS WEEKEND IN AZTEC BASEBALL
SDSU will be on the road this week for Mountain West play with a three-game series at conference foe New Mexico beginning Thursday, March 28, at 2:05 p.m. (MT) at Lobo Field in Albuquerque. The Aztecs and Rebels will also meet in singles games on Friday (March 29) and Saturday (March 30) at 2:05 p.m. and 1:05 p.m. respectively. The games were originally scheduled to be played at Isotopes Park, but have been moved to the on-campus Lobo Field with all three contests being played in the afternoon. The series runs Thursday through Saturday due to Easter falling on Sunday (March 31).
SDSU leads its series against New Mexico by the count of 98-61. The Lobos have won 18 of the last 25 meetings between the teams dating back to the 2008 season. That mark includes the Lobos winning five of six during the 2012 regular season as well as the contest between the teams in the championship game of the 2012 Mountain West tournament. San Diego State has a record of 63-27 vs. UNM in San Diego, 31-30 in Albuquerque and 4-4 on neutral fields.
March 21, 2013 (San Diego)--Moving to a new town or city is always very exciting and sometimes also a little nerve racking.
When contemplating relocation, therefore, it is always a good idea to take a long hard look at all the pros and cons in order to arrive at a balanced view. Here are just some of the things to take into account of for anyone contemplating moving to San Diego.
By Miriam Raftery
March 20, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – Pattern Energy has claimed that a Merlin Avian Radar system at its Ocotillo Express Wind Facility will detect eagles and allow turbines to be shut down to save them from the whirling blades. Avian radar is also proposed at other wind projects proposed in East County.
But now ECM has learned that an eagle was killed at Pattern’s Spring Valley Wind project near Great Basin National Park in Nevada. According to Bureau of Land Management documents, Pattern had claimed in Appendix F, its Avian and Bat Protection Plan, that it planned to install three separate radar systems at the Spring Valley project to prevent deaths of birds and bats, including both Merlin and Vesper technology.
Pattern did not respond to an ECM request for comment. The death, along with mounting evidence indicating avian radar is failing to protect birds at wind sites, raises serious concerns over the fate of eagles in our region, where three more wind farms are proposed in San Diego’s East County.
By L.D. Thompson
March 18, 2013 (City Heights) -- Crawford High School student Terrance Hall said he doesn't always have bus fare and has to walk 18 blocks to get to school. Over 400 students in the Center City area alone take the bus to school every day at a cost of $5.00 per day or a regional monthly bus pass of up to $72.00.
School Superintendent Richard Barrera reported that for four years he has been asking Mayor Jerry Sanders to do something to relieve students and parents alike of this unfair burden only to have his request fall on deaf ears. However the election of Bob Filner as San Diego’s new Mayor changed all that.
Saturday morning, the Improving Transportation in City Heights (ITCH) held a press conference to witness the signing of a pledge to provide students free transportation on the city owned transit system.
SOCIETY OF PROFESSIONAL JOURNALISTS TO HONOR FIRST AMENDMENT FIGHTER TERRY FRANCKE OF CALAWARE ON MARCH 27 IN SAN DIEGO
March 20, 2013 (San Diego) – The Society of Professional Journalists will honor Terry Francke of Californians Aware (CalAware) with SPJ’s Sunshine Award for his efforts over many years. The award will be presented on March 27 at 6:30 at the 501 West Broadway office of Sheppard Mullin on the buildings 19th floor.
Francke, currently general counsel for Californians Aware, has a 31-year history of helping journalists, citizens and public officials understand and use their First Amendment and open government rights.
March 17, 2013 (Alpine)--You're invited to the Viejas Casino Hotel Grand Opening on March 23 at 8 p.m. Join the grand opening weekend VIP party and the world premiere of "Rise." A 30-minute cirque experience specially commissioned for the occasion, this breathtaking exhibition of artistry and acrobatics could only be followed by one thing-fireworks.
Stick around after the show and take in an incredible display that will literally ring in Viejas Hotel's Grand Opening with a bang.
By Miriam Raftery
March 17, 2013 (San Diego) – This week, Mayor Bob Filner celebrated his 100th day in office as the 35th Mayor of San Diego by releasing a list of accomplishments in his first 30 days.
To the delight of some and the dismay of others, the new Mayor is shaking things up at City Hall and challenging the powers-that-be as he strives to fulfill his campaign promises for change.
Twice Begun, by Reina Lisa Menasche
Book review by Miriam Raftery
March 17, 2013 (San Diego)--Paris Jablonski has a seemingly idyllic life in San Diego with her charming French husband and young daughter. But that illusion is shattered on her seventh anniversary, when she finds love letters in her husband’s closet from a woman in France.
Twice Begun, a novel by San Diego author Reina Menasche, opens with this line: “Before I stepped into the closet, my life felt like an Impressionist masterpiece—filled with elusive light yet made of simple dabs of color that even a child could paint.”
But Paris is given no opportunity to absorb the shock, caught in the moment not by her philandering husband, Serge, but by the family dog tailed closely by Paris' 7-year-old daughter, who asks innocently, “Mommy, why are you in the closet?”
March 13, 2013 (Jamul) -- Debbie Ekhaml caught the action as twin fawns leaped across a meadow in an ecological preserve in Jamul. Who knew that Bambi could jump so high--nearly resembling a kangaroo at times?
"I have many pictures of them with the doe, but like them jumping the best," wrote Ekhaml, who declined to disclose the precise location in order to protect the deer from hunters.
SDSU News Center
March 13, 2013 (San Diego)-- San Diego State University men's and women's basketball teams head to Las Vegas this week for the Mountain West Tournament before what they hope are deep runs in the NCAA Tournament.
The women's basketball team has won its second consecutive league title.