June 2011 Articles
June 17,2011 (San Diego) -- County Supervisors and public safety officials kicked off Defensible Space Days last week by urging residents to give their homes a fighting chance against wildfires by creating a 100-foot buffer zone. The map below shows areas most likely to have a major wildfire—including a significant section of East County.
“We lost thousands of homes in the 2003 and 2007 firestorms and learned that homes with defensible space are far more likely to survive than homes without it. As we head into the hot, dry conditions of summer and fall, it’s imperative that residents get rid of fire hazards on their properties,” said Supervisor Dianne Jacob.
By Brian Lafferty
June 19, 2011 (San Diego) – I was at a movie theater recently when a friend of the projectionist asked me if I knew any jokes. I leafed through the “books” of my mental library trying to find one but I couldn’t. I was content to let him rattle off a series of jokes and listen. Later that day I remembered a few jokes that I found funny. But even then I wouldn’t have told them.
By Scott H. Kidwell, La Mesa
At the June 14, 2011 La Mesa City Council meeting Mayor Art Madrid moved to remove the city from the East County Economic Development Council and rather use the $5,000 annual membership fee to allow city officials to do more travel to defend city financing at state and federal levels. Time will tell how worthwhile this plan will be.
But in as much as the Mayor claims to have not "seen one scintilla of benefit to the city from being a member" of the ECEDC I recommend a couple things to ensure maximum return on this travel investment.
June 17, 2011 (Otay Mesa)-- Highway 94 was closed briefly late today while firefighters worked to contain a brush fire. The fire was held at 12 acres and all lanes are now open, Cal-Fire confirms.
Story and photos by Ron Logan
June 16, 2011 (La Mesa)Chris Ahrens is a school teacher and an elite athlete. For months on end he has trained long hours in preparation for this month’s world championships in his sport.
June 17, 2011 (Alpine) – For orchard owner Tim Scherer, this crime is the pits. Scherer, an East County resident in the Alpine area, informs ECM that a band of men cleared out all the apricots off a tree in his orchard several days ago.
“The owners of the Alpine brewery said it had happened to others in the area,” Scherer said. “Whoever it is has professional equipment, because they even got the fruit from high up in the tree.”
Garrick reportedly was set to run for redrawn Senate district in East County
By Miriam Raftery
June 16, 2011 (San Diego) – Assemblyman Martin Garrick (R-74th district), who currently represents North County, was arrested yesterday in Sacramento for driving under the influence of alcohol, after speeding, running a stop sign and fleeing from two California Highway Patrol officers.
Garrick, a former vice chair of the local Republican Party and past GOP Assembly leader, has been put forward by the Republican Party as a potential candidate to run for State Senate in a redrawn 38th State Senate district that would include areas in East County north of Interstate 8 if proposed redistricting plans are approved as drafted.
Massive helicopters used in heavy-lifting operations such as Sunrise Powerlink
By Miriam Raftery
June 16, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – Acting on a tip from a caller who said he used to work under sky cranes during forest fire operations, ECM has conducted an investigation into the safety record of massive sky crane helicopters such as the Erickson S-64F sky cranes that dropped two 16,000-pound tower sections last week during construction of SDG&E’s Sunrise Powerlink.
“One significant issue not being reported is the number of aircraft they, Erickson, have lost due to mechanical issues or operator error,” said the caller, who asked not to be identified but indicated he has worked on a ground crew under the aircraft and has never worked for any Erickson competitor. He provided details on several specific accidents which an ECM investigation has independently verified.
June 17, 2011 (La Mesa)--What is your image of summer? Being on the water, a back country visit, ripe grapes in the sun? We all have nostalgic and joyful memories of summers past, and hopes for relaxation, recreation and friendship in the months ahead.
"Images of Summer" at O'Dunn Fine Art in La Mesa will present--in the vernacular of painting--sunny days of over twenty artists, in oils, watercolor, and pastels. Landscape, figurative, and abstract pieces evoke the season, each framed and ready to hang. Proprietor Shannon O'Dunn invites you to join her for the opening of "Images of Summer", and to celebrate the Summer Solstice with music and art on Wednesday June 22, from 5 pm to 8 pm.
“That SDG&E would break rules and rush to put a faulty helicopter in the air again is just unconscionable...I continue to question the CPUC's monitoring of the project and again call on CPUC commissioners and the governor's office to closely evaluate these troubling events.” - Supervisor Dianne Jacob
SDG&E to replace helicopter and submit plan for operations in congested areas
FAA and CPUC approval required before resuming operations after utility found in violation of notification procedures
By Miriam Raftery
June 16, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – The FAA has suspended operations of the Erickson S-64F Sky Crane helicopter that twice dropped towers each weighing 16,400 pounds during hoist operations for SDG&E’s Sunrise Powerlink. A preliminary incident report released yesterday by California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) suggests a digital hook control system may be at fault. The agency also chastised SDG&E for violating requirements to keep regulators informed before returning the sky crane to service after the first accident.
June 16, 2011 (Warner Springs) 5:25 p.m. –A female motorcyclist has been airlifted to Palomar Hospital with moderate injuries, Cal-Fire confirms. CHP's website indicates 10-20 motorcyclists at the scene, however CAL-Fire has clarified that only one was seriously injured. The crash occurred on State Route 79 at Chihuahua Road. The road is currently closed.
East County Roundup highlights top stories of interest to East County, published in other media.
Recent Roundup headlines include:
• Brown vetoes Democratic budget (Sacramento Bee)
• Board of Supervisors votes to create committee on human trafficking (Mt. Helix Patch)
• City Council favors chicken in a pot, not a coop (Santee Patch)
• Grocery store workers consider strike amid negotiations (Mt. Helix Patch)
• La Mesa-Spring Valley Schools lay off 27 classified employees, expect more (La Mesa patch)
• Property Based Improvement District (PBID) Committee picks up pace (La Mesa Today)
• Furlough Fridays on tap for Lemon Grove (San Diego Union-Tribune)
• California could make the Dream Act a reality (NPR)
• Pensions account for 3% rise in city budgets through 2012 (La Mesa Patch)
• Grossmont High School District funds 3 librarians (La Mesa Patch)
• El Cajon teachers pleading for longer school years (San Diego Union-Tribune)
• Prop 8 supporters lose court battle (Sacramento Bee)
• ‘Bomb factory’ man gets 30 years in prison (San Diego Union-Tribune)
• Rural-metro ambulance services stay for now (San Diego Union-Tibune)
• What do San Diego’s top CEOs make? (San Diego Union-Tribune)
• 5 cities still offer top pension benefits (San Diego Union-Tribune)
• All here agree: Prop L takes the budget cake (La Mesa Patch)
June 16, 2011 (La Mesa) – Kimberly Dawn Roehr of La Mesa has been arrested on four counts of burglary and one count of receiving stolen property, thanks to a tip from a local citizen who recognized her from the “San Diego’s Most Wanted-The FBI Files” television program.
The suspect had been recorded on video stealing hundreds of dollars of electronic merchandise at the Target store in Grossmont Center in January and February, according to the FBI.
June 16, 2011 (Poway) --To kick off the County Library’s Summer Reading Club, a team of search and rescue beagles visited children at the Poway Library today. Some kids even read their favorite books aloud to the friendly animals.
It was a fitting meeting: This summer, kids and adults can “Read for a Reason,” to benefit the beagles and the entire Sheriff’s Department’s Search and Rescue Canine Unit. As participants meet reading goals through the summer, a group of local sponsors has committed to buying lighted collars and canine first-aid kits for the dogs.
June 16, 2011 (San Diego) The FAA has sent a written statement in response to an ECM inquiry for information on the two SDG&E Sunrise Powerlink towers dropped by a sky crane helicopter June 7 and June 10. The statement indicates a replacement helicopter has arrived in San Diego and will undergo tests Monday in Imperial County.
The FAA also indicates sky cranes are not certified to fly over occupied populated areas when carrying heavy loads. The spokesman, Ian Gregor, later clarified in an e-mail that "a lift could occur over a populated area if that were absolutely necessary. However, nobody unessential to the operation could be on the ground below while the lift took place, and the lift could not take place directly over homes."
Below is the statement in full received this afternoon from Gregor, public information manager at the FAA Pacific Division:
June 16, 2011 (El Cajon) -- In order to create a cleaner environment for our community, the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce is hosting an electronic waste [e-waste] recycling collection event on Saturday and Sunday June 25 and 26, 2011, in the parking lot of Westfield Parkway, directly in front of the Best Buy, from 9:00AM to 4:00PM.
June 15, 2011 (Washington D.C.) -- The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed. It is illegal to resell or attempt to resell a recalled consumer product.
June 16, 2011 (San Diego) – Cumming Corporation announced the hiring of Debbie Murray, a 20-year construction industry veteran, as Director of the company’s growing education sector practice in San Diego. The move is an indication of Cumming’s local strength and ongoing dedication to project and cost management for educational construction projects in the region.
Apprentices and journeymen employed at businesses throughout San Diego County
June 16, 2011 (San Diego) – San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) today announced it has signed two new renewable contracts -- one with a subsidiary of San Diego-based enXco and the other with Arlington Valley Solar Energy II, LLC (a subsidiary of LS Power Development, LLC) for a combined total capacity of up to 237 megawatts (MW) of solar energy.
The Catalina Solar project to be developed by enXco will have the capacity to generate up to 110 MW from the sun, starting with delivery of 50 MW by the end of next year and the remaining 60 MW by June 2013.
By Miriam Raftery
June 12, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – Who will your future representatives be for Congress, State Senate and Assembly? Starting next year, many East County residents will find themselves in different districts-- if draft maps drawn up by the California Citizens Redistricting Commission are adopted. While most legislators appear likely to keep fairly safe seats, some districts have become more competitive. Key East County districts will have drastically different boundaries, forcing elected officials to campaign on unfamiliar turf--and even adjacent counties.
The commission was formed following a ballot initiative approved by voters. The goal was to take redistricting out of the hands of politicians in Sacramento in hopes of creating more competitive and geographically rational district lines instead of gerrymandering. Public comment is sought in June before the commission finalizes its plans.
ECM’s analysis of the maps yields some intriguing findings. Among them:
June 16, 2011 (San Diego’s East County)--ECM World Watch helps you be an informed citizen about important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflecting all voices and views, we include links to a wide variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views.
Top global and national news stories include:
• Tax cuts aren’t always appetizing (American Progress)
• Senate report examines U.S. efforts in Afghanistan (NPR)
• FDA warns against high doses of cholesterol drug (NPR)
• Hispanics nationwide: a snapshot (San Diego Union-Tribune)
• GPS users fear getting lost in wireless expansion (NPR)
• Facebook rolls out facial recognition feature (NPR)
• Terrorism case exposes gaps in refugee screening (NPR)
• Pakinstan reportedly arrests suspected CIA informants (NPR)
• U.S. probes if Pakistan colluded with militants (NPR)
• Gates rebukes Europe for lacking commitment in NATO (Christian Science Monitor)
• Defiant Iran plans big rise in nuclear enrichment (Reuters)
• Qaeda’s Zawahiri says U.S. facing Muslim rebellion (Reuters)
• China floods kill 52, force 100,000 to evacuate (Reuters)
• Amnesty condemns sharp rise in Saudi beheadings (Jerusalem Post)
• German pins down E.Coli: “It’s the bean sprouts” (Reuters)
• Concerns over Democracy dominate as Turkey votes (Reuters)
• Death toll in Haiti’s mudslides rises to 23 (Reuters)
• U.S. Navy intercepted North Korean trip (Reuters)
• Africa and the Internet: A 21st Century human rights issue? (Christian Science Monitor)
• Mexican judge orders release of ex-mayor of Tijuana (San Diego Union-Tribune)
• Lebanese PM forms cabinet 5 months after taking office (Jerusalem Post)
• Germany recognizes Libya’s rebel leadership (Reuters)
• Syria’s regime cracks down hard. But is the military on board? (Christian Science Monitor)
• Yemen says makes arrests in attempt on Saleh’s life( (Reuters)
• Powerful quake again hits New Zealand’s Christchurch (Reuters)
• Japan says eight nuclear workers over-exposed to radiation (Reuters)
• Arab spring leaves Egypt in an economic slump (NPR)
• Iran to launch monkey into space (Jerusalem Post)
• Libyan rebels reject elections offer (Al Jazeera)
• Iraq’s Mehdi army faces splits, wary of return to war (Reuters)
• Militants launch cross-border attack into Pakistan (Reuters)
• Mexican police capture suspected teenage assassins (Reuters)
June 15, 2011 (Blossom Valley) – A paraglider called for help after crashing into a mountainside and suffering a back injury in Blossom Valley on the evening of June 13th.
He was hoisted out via helicopter and taken to El Monte Park in Lakeside. Mercy Air then transported the injured man to a local hospital.
WOMAN RESCUED AFTER INJURY AT CEDAR CREEK FALLS; DEPUTY OFFERS SAFETY TIPS FOR VISITORS TO POPULAR ATTRACTION
June 15, 2011 (Ramona) – A female hiker was air lifted out of the Cedar Creek Falls area June 12 around 4 p.m. “She jumped from a rock and impacted the water, injuring her back,”said Deputy Tim Johnson with the Sheriff’s ASTREA helicopter unit.
The number of visitors to the waterfall has soared since the U.S. Forest Service completed a new trail earlier this month. “All these improvements just make it that much more attractive out there,” said Johnson, who offered this safety advice for visitors to this local Shangri-La. “Don’t jump off rocks that are elevated above the water, not knowing what’s under there. It’s common sense.”
All ticket and raffle sales from the event will assist Japan in rebuilding after earthquake, tsunami
San Diego, CA, June 13, 2011 – GAM3RS, the hysterical one-man play about role-playing games, work, life and elves, returns to San Diego for a special benefit performance Friday, June 17 at 7 p.m. at the Ansir Innovation Center. Created by San Diegans Brian Bielawski and Walter G. Meyer and starring Bielawski, the show has rocked the New York International Fringe Festival and played at colleges from MIT and ASU to UCSD and USD.
“As soon as the earthquake hit, we knew we wanted to figure out a way to help. When the good folks at Ansir offered a venue, we jumped at it,” Meyer said. “Ansir is a good fit for us,” Bielawski added. “They do cutting edge, technical stuff—the kind of stuff we tend to make fun of in GAM3RS.”
Update June 14: Timothy Ralph Danielson has been arrested and charged with murder. He remains hospitalized for treatment.
June 13, 2011 (Lakeside)—A woman was found dead early this morning at 10328 New Bedford Court in Lakeside, according to Sheriff’s Homicide Lieutenant Larry Nesbit. Deputies entered the home after receiving a call from a concerned relative and found the woman’s body in an upstairs bedroom.
According to ECM news partner 10 News, the woman’s husband had emailed his sister-in-law stating that he had shot his wife and was going to kill himself. Responding deputies found him alive following an attempt to kill himself with carbon monoxide from a portable generator; neighbors identified the man as Tim Danielson, 10 News reports.
Classes available on June 23rd, June 28th, and Blood pressure screening on June 17th. See information below.
June 15, 2011 (La Mesa) -- The Grossmont Healthcare District’s Dr. William C. Herrick Community Health Care Library, 9001 Wakarusa St. in La Mesa, will host a free seniors discussion group on “Whole Raw Food,” featuring a presentation from Cindy Douglas, a certified raw foods educator from Whole Raw Food Now (www.wholerawfoodnow.com), from 10 to 11 a.m., Wednesday, June 22. The public is invited to attend. RSVP is not required.
June 15, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – A suspect shot by a U.S. Marshal at the Albertson’s at 790 Broadway in Lemon Grove has led deputies on a high-speed chase. Incident Page Network reports multiple shots were fired and the suspect has been shot in the arm. The Highway 94 on-ramp westbound ramp westbound from College Grove was shut down temporarily, however the suspect has now been taken into custody.
Supervisors to consider proposed plans June 28
June 15, 2011 (San Diego County) -- After a series of public meetings that began in February, the County’s Redistricting Advisory Committee voted Monday to forward three proposed redistricting plans to the Board of Supervisors. The citizen’s committee was tasked with gathering public input and forwarding no more than three plans for the Board’s consideration. The Redistricting Advisory Committee finished that work and held its final meeting Monday.
The Board of Supervisors is expected to hear the committee’s proposed plans at its regular Board meeting at 9 a.m. on June 28.The Redistricting Advisory Committee’s three proposals can be viewed at the County’s redistricting website at www.sdcounty.ca.gov/redistricting. Once at the site, please choose “view/submit plan” from the left menu; then choose “view the latest proposed plans.” This will take you to the online viewer, where you can “Choose (a) Plan.”