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News Ticker Entries for August, 2011

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Bank Recipient of Treasury Funds Announces Merger

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First PacTrust Bancorp is back in the news today. Yesterday we reported that the parent company of Chula Vista’s Pacific Trust Bank had received $32 million from the Department of the Treasury’s Small Business Lending Fund. Per the Treasury’s website, ...

Smart Meters on Oceanside Streets

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San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E) is asking to pay the City of Oceanside $3000 in exchange for placing smart meter network devices on streetlights. The proposal will be heard during a council hearing this evening. The devices will collect ...

Texas Gov. Rick Perry Stopping in San Diego

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Texas Governor and Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry will be stopping in San Diego on September 8 for a meet-and-greet event at the San Diego Airport. "I just got off the phone with Texas Governor Rick Perry's campaign, and they ...

Oceanside Food Truck Fight

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Two Oceanside councilmembers would like to take a look at allowing food trucks to operate in the City. However, it seems as if Deputy Mayor Esther Sanchez and councilmember Jerry Kern, the proponents of the gastro-truck initiative, seem to be ...

Disaster Readiness in a Digital Age

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The Federal Emergency Management Agency is urging citizens to add another tool to their emergency preparedness skill set: tech savvy. With the internet becoming a larger part of everyday life and surpassing older traditional methods of communication, FEMA has decided ...

FBI Busts S.F. Giants Worker Seeking San Diego Home Loan

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A payroll manager for the San Francisco Giants has been arrested by the FBI for suspected embezzlement of more than $1.5 million after she admitted to channeling $608,562.09 of the team's payroll money to her personal bank account and forging ...

Goldsmith Quietly Drops DROP Appeal

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On June 15, City Attorney Jan Goldsmith quietly dropped an appeal that he had filed with the 4th Appellate District of a case against allegedly excessive employee benefits that had been lost at the trial level by his predecessor, Mike ...

Treasury Dollars for Local Bank

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First PacTrust Bancorp of Chula Vista, the holding company for Pacific Trust Bank, today announced a $32 million investment in the form of preferred stock purchases. The stock was purchased by the federal Department of the Treasury through its Small ...

Group Wants Out of SDG&E Smart Meter Program

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La Mesa resident Susan Brinchman says she has felt the consequences from having a smart meter on the other side of her bedroom wall. The meters send and collect data from surrounding meters using radio-frequency waves. And according to San ...

Ban on Styrofoam Bins

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Restaurant managers across California might have to go and get some new to-go containers if state lawmakers approve a bill banning polystyrene containers. The bill's aim is to force restaurants to purchase more environmentally-friendly bins. In 1986 the Environmental Protection ...

Imperial Valley Announces Another Solar Farm

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SunPeak Solar, LLC, and Suntech Power Holdings Co., LTD have inked a deal to build a 23 megawatt solar power facility in Niland, CA, east of the Salton Sea and about 30 miles north of El Centro in the Imperial ...

Mystery Thief Robs Unknown Victim

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La Mesa Police are looking for any witnesses to a purse snatching that occurred last Saturday, August 27, near the intersection of El Cajon Boulevard and Baltimore Drive. They’re also trying to locate a victim. Police responded to a report ...

SD Home Values Rise Slightly in June

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San Diego home values rose 0.2% in June from May, according to Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller data released this morning (Aug. 30). That was less than the 1.1% average increase of the 20 major metro areas. San Diego County's values were ...

Helicopters Hovering Over University Heights

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Some residents of University Heights are "sounding off" regarding noise from police helicopters circling above. In the University Heights Community Association's September newsletter, one resident wrote of his frustrations with the constant clap from police copters. "I settled here because ...

UCSD Pulls Books from Library Shelves

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Faced with another $3 million in budget cuts for 2011/2012, the UC San Diego’s libraries division is preparing to shutter four of the six libraries on campus that it operates. Since the 2008/2009 school year, the library budget has already ...

Chaldean-Mexican Drug Connection Explored

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Sylvia Longmire, a former Special Agent with the Air Force Office of Special Investigations and ex-intelligence analyst for the California state fusion center, has a unique take on her blog at HSToday.us about what was really behind that big August ...

Joel Anderson gives $10,000 to Anti-Redistricting Effort

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GOP state Sen. Joel Anderson has become one of the first contributors to a newly-formed political committee trying to overturn recently re-drawn state legislative district boundaries. According to a disclosure report filed August 24, Anderson's re-election committee, Taxfighters for Anderson ...

Nuclear Power and Earthquake Safety Debate Goes National

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After decades of debate along the west coast, concerns regarding the safety and reliability of nuclear power in the face of an earthquake have gained national prominence. Last week’s quake in Mineral, Virginia was measured at 5.8 on the Richter ...

Cyclists Push for Safety

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Cyclists across the city and around the state are pushing for cooperation from authorities and legislation that will improve the safety of bicycle transit in urban areas. At the local level, the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition met last week ...

Cardroom Lobby Flexes its Financial Muscle

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There's an interesting story on the possible fate of San Diego's last two remaining card rooms over on KPBS.org. Seems the Palomar Card Club and Casino and the Lucky Lady Casino may be on their last legs if the city ...

Young Child Struck By Hit-And-Run Driver

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La Mesa Police are seeking the driver of a vehicle that struck a young child and fled yesterday. Last night at around 7:45 p.m., police received a call that a 27 month old boy had been hit in the eastbound ...

Marti Emerald To Run For 9th District Council Seat

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First term councilmember Marti Emerald announced that she is running for re-election to the city council, but this time around for a different district. One day after the Redistricting Committee approved new council boundaries, Emerald launched a campaign for the ...

Realtors' Short Sale Woes Continue

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The California Association of Realtors, apparently backing away from previous statements pushing a generally positive outlook on the state’s housing market, says in a news release that “short sales will be a part of the California real estate landscape for ...

More Opposition to Cross-Border Power

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The Imperial Irrigation District announced yesterday that its Board of Directors passed a resolution condemning Sempra Energy’s move to construct a cross-border power transmission line, dubbed Energia Sierra Juárez. The line would allow Sempra to construct renewable energy sources, such ...

Major Solar Project Approved East of San Diego County

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Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar gave his approval to connect a 250-megawatt solar power project located in Imperial Valley to the energy grid in California. The transmission line, an above-ground 230 kilovolt line, will run electricity generated from the ...

Real World Bird Rock Releases Video Preview

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The trailer for MTV’s Real World San Diego, the reality show stirring controversy in La Jolla’s tony Bird Rock and environs, has been released. As the La Jolla Light reported last month, residents there, fearing the worst, demanded police protection: ...

Eleven Bay Area Papers Will Combine into Two

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In what may be a precursor of a Southern California newspaper amalgamation, MediaNews Group announced this week that it is combining its eleven Bay Area papers into two. The Denver-based company expects to reduce its Bay Area staff by 1,500, ...

State Prison Grants Medical Parole

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Curtis D. Beauvais became the sixth state prisoner to be granted medical parole by the California Board of Parole Hearings on Tuesday. Under a law that took effect January 1, the state “allows inmates who are permanently, medically incapacitated and ...

UCSD Launches Liver Fixit Clinic in Las Vegas

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If you’re in the liver repair and replacement business, set up shop in one of America’s “drunkest cities.” In the case of La Jolla’s UCSD, that just happens to be Las Vegas. Earlier this year Vegas placed 11th on a ...

Loads of Crops

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The annual San Diego County agricultural report says we have a total of 6687 farms — more farms than any other county in the U.S. The county remains in the top five counties for cucumbers, mushrooms, tomatoes, boysenberries, strawberries, grapefruit, ...

County Reminds Citizens of Terror Threat

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The San Diego County Office of Emergency Services is reminding citizens of the need to continue watching for signs of terrorist activity as the tenth anniversary of 9/11 approaches. “If You See Something, Say Something,” reads the headline on the ...

FBI Warns of Car-Selling Scam

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The FBI issued a warning on August 23 to prospective car buyers looking online for a new ride. The bureau says more criminals are trying to sell vehicles that they do not own. Much of the time the ad tells ...

Child Passenger Safety Day in Solana Beach

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The San Diego County Sheriff’s Encinitas station has announced that it will be hosting a “Child Passenger Safety Day” on Thursday in Solana Beach. Local law enforcement will team with Prevention Specialists and the San Diego Pacific Safety Council to ...

U-T Wouldn't Print Issa Piece, Draws Criticism

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At left: art from Poynter report On Aug. 15, the New York Times ran a long, front page story on how North County Rep. Darrell Issa continues running businesses rather than putting his money in a blind trust, as other ...

San Diego Alleged to Have Improperly Used State Lands Cash

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The California State Auditor is out with a report citing charges by the executive officer of the State Lands Commission that San Diego officials allegedly used unspecified state funds in improper ways. The report, released yesterday, says that bad management ...

"Are You Kidding Me" Moments with Assemblymember Brian Jones

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"I have been in the Assembly all of eight months and it seems I have said "Are you kidding me" on more occasions than I can count," writes assemblyman Brian Jones in his August newsletter. Among his "are you kidding ...

Grant Money for New Alzheimer's Drug

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UC San Diego announced today that researchers at the university’s School of Medicine have been awarded a $1 million, five-year grant to fast-track development of a new Alzheimer’s disease therapy. The grant is one of seven given by the National ...

The Highwayman's Rig: Totaled

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"I'm devastated by this," writes Thomas Weller, also know as "The Highwayman," in a August 23 email. Weller will likely remain devastated until he finds a witness to an accident he was involved in, one that will keep him from ...

Amazon Pours More Into Anti-Sales Tax Campaign

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Web retailer Amazon.com has funneled another $2.25 million into its “More Jobs Not Taxes” campaign to repeal California’s Assembly Bill X1 28. The bill requires internet retailers doing business in the state to collect applicable sales taxes. To date the ...

Tighter Times Ahead for California's Colleges

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California Community Colleges and the California State University system are bracing for another round of cuts this winter. The college systems’ budgets, already reduced $400 million and $650 million respectively for the fiscal year, face deeper cuts of roughly $100 ...

DeMaio Accuses Fletcher of Lifting Ideas

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"Fixing San Diego requires a mayor who will outline bold and fresh ideas and who can build consensus to implement those ideas," said mayoral candidate, councilmember Carl DeMaio. "Even my mayoral opponents cannot resist the common sense reforms I have ...

Navy: 'Smart Pigs' Are on the Case

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The Navy says Point Loma residents shouldn't fret about that 57-year-old pipeline carrying more than 300 million tons of jet fuel each year. They shouldn't worry because the "Smart Pigs" are on the case, or, rather are inspecting the casing. ...

General Atomics Faces Yet Another Uranium Cleanup Fight

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The New York Times has reported via the Greenwire news service that Rio Grande Resources Corp., a subsidiary of La Jolla-based General Atomics is stirring opposition in New Mexico with its plans to delay cleanup of its Mount Taylor uranium ...

SDSU Rolls Out New Wine Studies Program

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San Diego State University’s College of Extended Studies has announced it will be offering a revamped professional certificate program this year – for the “Business of Wine.” “People who study wine should first and foremost have a passion for it,” ...

How Issa Raped Small Investors

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Floyd Norris has a column in today's (Aug. 19) New York Times showing how North County's Rep. Darrell Issa screwed small investors in a Vista-based company named DEI Holdings, maker of such things as vehicle security devices -- Issa's road ...

Surfrider Appeals Decision on Desalinization Plant

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The Surfrider Foundation filed an appeal to a decision to allow “open ocean” intake at a proposed desalinization plant in Carlsbad today. Superior court judge Judith Hayes had initially ruled in favor of the San Diego Regional Water Quality Control ...

SD Unemployment Rate Rises to 10.5%

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San Diego County lost 6000 non-farm jobs from June to July as the unemployment rate rose to 10.5%, up from a revised 10.4% in June, according to the California Employment Development Department. The biggest decline came in government jobs, down ...

Hookup the Hookah

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More people are gathering around the hookah table and lighting up, say researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine. According to the recent study published by the American Journal of Public Health, from 2005 to 2008 ...

San Diego Ranks As 28th Most Dangerous for Pedestrians

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The area of San Diego, Carlsbad, and San Marcos ranks as the 28th most dangerous metropolitan area for pedestrians, says a study conducted by Transportation For America. For every 100,000 pedestrians, 2.1 deaths occurred during 2000 to 2009 on metropolitan ...

El Cajon Police Expose Iraqi/Mexican Drug Ring

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SWAT teams from the El Cajon and La Mesa Police departments conducted a joint raid on the Chaldean Social Club on East Main Street in El Cajon Wednesday night. The action was part of an ongoing investigation known as Operation ...

Wealthy San Diegans Back Charter School Politics

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At left: Buzz Woolley Things don't seem to be going so well for the future of charter schools in California, what with news today, reported by the Sacramento Bee, that the federal government has pulled $11.5 million of funding to ...

Mayor Dodges Second Deposition in Kessler Case

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Mayor Jerry Sanders won't be deposed a second time in the Kessler vs. City of San Diego case, according to a ruling today (Aug. 18) by Superior Court Judge John Meyer. Scott Kessler was an official who was fired by ...

KUSI News Anchor Dan Plante Transplants to Phoenix

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KUSI's animated morning news anchor, Dan Plante, surfaced in Phoenix after months of speculation that the news anchor had been fired. In the wake of Plante's disappearance from the morning news show fans started a Facebook page, "Where is Dan ...

Vintage Trolleys Populate New Silver Line

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A large crowd gathered this morning outside the Metropolitan Transit System’s downtown headquarters to celebrate the launch of its new Silver Line, a loop route around the city’s core. The special weekend/holiday route will be the fourth in addition to ...

Point Loma Residents Warn Navy Against Waking the "Sleeping Giant"

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Some residents of Point Loma call it, the "Sleeping Giant." The 'it' being a 56-year-old Navy pipeline carrying jet-fuel that runs 17 miles between the Marine Corps air station in Miramar to the Naval Base in Point Loma. The pipeline ...

Local State Assembly Member Staff Salaries Listed

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In September of last year Democratic state Assembly Speaker John Pérez announced he was posting the salaries of all Assembly staffers online for the public to peruse. “The scandals in the City of Bell have made it clear more public ...

Escondido Officials Say They Are Not Throwing Money into BallPark

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Escondido City officials say the $118,285 for consultant services on the now-delayed construction of a minor league ballpark are not new expenditures. Instead, $68,285 of which will pay outstanding balances for work that has already been completed. The remaining $50,000 ...

Local Bank Approves Merger

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Shareholders of the privately-held Embarcadero Bank have approved a merger with Coronado First Bank. Holders of approximately 85% of the bank’s common stock voted in favor of the merger, as announced in a press release yesterday. "Simply put, the merger ...

The Pilfering of Historic Plaques Continues...

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A thief, or some Mills Act-obsessed crook, continues to swipe the historic plaques from homes in Mission Hills. Since Monday four plaques have been ripped from historic homes in Uptown. Two of which came from homes on Fort Stockton Drive ...

Operation Clean Sweep Prepares for 21st Year

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The San Diego Port Tenants’ Association is gearing up for the 21st installment of its annual Operation Clean Sweep project around San Diego Bay. The U.S. Navy, Port of San Diego, and several local tenants are also participating. During the ...

The County's Unclaimed Monies List

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Unclaimed cash from property tax-refunds and miscellaneous payments is burning a hole in San Diego County Treasurer/Tax Collector, Dan McAllister's pocket. On Wednesday, McAllister issued a press release asking property owners and residents of San Diego County to check the ...

Senator Vargas Moves to Block Cross-Border Power Project

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State Senator Juan Vargas, whose 40th district spans the entire California/Mexico border, has introduced legislation to stop construction of a cross-border utility line. The bill, SJR 13, would formally request that the United States Department of Energy reject an application ...

Escondido Officials to Toss More Cash at Ballpark Consultants

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On August 17, the Escondido city council will decide whether to spend an additional $118,283 on consultants for the the proposed minor league ballpark. The extra cash will raise the total amount spent on environmental and traffic consultants to $846,492 ...

Weevils Threaten Local Palm Trees

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The County of San Diego has announced it will hold an informational meeting on August 18 to alert the public of dangers posed by the discovery of two types of exotic weevil recently discovered in the region. The insects threaten ...

Bankers Hill Residents Oppose St. Paul's Cathedral Project

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Members of the Bankers Hill/Park West Community Association agree; the proposal from St.Paul's Cathedral to build two residential and commercial towers in the heart of the Bankers Hill community is wrong for the community. The residents said so in their ...

J. Craig Venter: Savior or Charlatan?

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Genetic engineering pioneer Craig Venter--whose foundation is set to build an elaborate new office and lab facility on a prime piece of property owned by UCSD, his alma mater--has made a good living out of high-profile endeavors, such as taking ...

Mortgage Processors Merge

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Ellie Mae, a technology provider for the mortgage industry, announced yesterday the purchase of Del Mar DataTrac, Inc. The San Diego-based Del Mar provides services to over 200 lenders, including its DataTrac program for processing and funding loans. Del Mar’s ...

The Rise of Independents in San Diego

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Nearly 41 percent of the 621,310 registered voters in the City of San Diego are registered under the Democratic party. Under 29 percent of voters are registered as Republicans. The numbers, recently released by the City Clerk's office, show that ...

State Test Scores Up at San Diego Unified

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San Diego Unified School District is trumpeting its successes today, as 2011 results for Standardized Testing and Results (STAR) testing were released. Every year the state tests students in grades 2-11 in English and mathematics, with select grades being quizzed ...

Free Airport Parking for County Pols Ruled Not a Gift

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Lawyers for the California Fair Political Practices Commission have held that free airport parking enjoyed by members of the county board of supervisors, sheriff, and others thanks to the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority isn't a gift under the ...

Del Mar Fairgrounds CEO Is Ready for Additional Race Meets

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Tim Fennell, CEO of the Del Mar Fairgrounds, says that Del Mar Fairgrounds will see "very little impact" if additional race meets were to come to Del Mar after Hollywood Park closes its gates for good. Fennell says if the ...

Developers and Trash Collectors Weigh In Big for Bill Horn

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Freshly re-elected San Diego County Supervisor Bill Horn took in a total of $56,037.93 in campaign contributions during the first half of this year, according to his recently filed campaign disclosure statement . After paying all the bills left over ...

Millions to Join Medi-Cal Rolls

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Law changes coming in 2014 will allow between 1.7 million and 3 million additional U.S. citizens and other legal California residents to begin applying for Medi-Cal, a government sponsored health care program funded with federal dollars. Previously open only to ...

NY Times Probes Issa's Business Deals

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The New York Times today (Aug. 15) gives more details on North County Rep. Darrell Issa's "meshing of public and private interests rarely seen in government." From the third floor of a Vista office building he runs his vast business ...

Scripps Florida Stirs Hornets' Nest with New Hospital Plan

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Back in 2003 and 2004, then-Gov. Jeb Bush of Florida seduced La Jolla's Scripps Research Institute into setting up an operation in Palm Beach County. The grease: $600 million in subsidies from both the state and the county. Scripps took ...

Bar Closes Shames Investigation

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The State Bar of California has closed an investigation of Michael Shames, head of Utility Consumers' Action Network. A whistleblower had filed a complaint with both the California Public Utilities Commission and the bar, noting that Shames calls himself an ...

San Diego's Parking Station Vendor hit by FBI Raid in Portland

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The offices and residence of Portland, Oregon city parking manager Ellis K. McCoy were raided this week by FBI and Internal Revenue Service agents, in what the Portland Oregonian newspaper calls "an intensifying public corruption investigation." According to the Oregonian: ...

Imperial Beach To Sell Its Street Signs

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Everything, every street sign in Imperial Beach that is, must go! On Wednesday, city councilmembers and the Mayor will authorize the sale of Imperial Beach street signs. Each sign will be offered at $25 a piece. The sale comes as ...

Plumbing Parts Tempt Thieves

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Helix Water District is warning its customers to be wary of thieves going after outdoor plumbing fixtures. Specifically, Helix is concerned with the theft of water-backflow-prevention devices, required at commercial buildings, buildings with fire sprinkler systems, and on properties with ...

Clarke Claims CIA Cover-Up of San Diego 9/11 Plotters

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The Daily Beast is reporting that, in an interview for an upcoming documentary, ex-White House counterterrorism honcho Richard Clarke accuses ex-CIA chief George Tenet and former associates of hiding vital intelligence regarding the presence of two Al Qaeda terrorists in ...

Postal Service to Slash Costs, Employees

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The United States Postal Service is planning to cut 220,000 jobs, or about a third of its workforce, between now and 2015. In other cost-cutting moves, it also wants to set up its own health benefit plan, speed up planned ...

"Stroller Precinct Strolls" For Nathan Fletcher

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"Women for a New Generation of Leadership," is what assemblyman Nathan Fletcher's campaign is calling a coalition of female supporters. According to the campaign, the members of the group will host fundraising events geared toward female voters. Those events include ...

B of A Settles With HUD, Hosts Modification Seminar

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Last week Bank of America, one of America’s largest home loan servicers after its acquisition of Countrywide Financial in 2008, entered into a settlement agreement with the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development. Under the terms of the settlement, ...

Sempra and Spanos Family Gave Big Bucks to Rick Perry

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Non-profit investigative journalism site California Watch is out with a list of California donors to conservative Texas governor Rick Perry's campaigns in that state. With no Lone Star state limits on the amount of money that can be given, Perry, ...

SDUSD Reports Dropout Rate

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According to new figures from California's Department of Education, San Francisco Unified School District was the only large district in the state to report a lower high school dropout rate than San Diego Unified. According to the newly released high ...

Oceanside Councilmember to Run for Mayor

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In recent years, conservative Oceanside city councilmember Jerry Kern has sound himself in the middle of some pretty ugly political battles. Two years ago Kern fought against a recall campaign largely backed by Oceanside's public safety unions. Those in favor ...

MoveOn Rallies for Jobs

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The liberal activist website MoveOn.org sponsored a series of demonstrations nationwide yesterday under the banner “Jobs Not Cuts,” including one convened at 4 p.m. yesterday in front of Congresswoman Susan Davis’ San Diego office. An initial crowd of 30-40 attracted ...

Roberts 2014 Re-election Bid Funded by North County Cash

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Barely done defending his seat in 2010, county supervisor Ron Roberts spent the first six months of this year raising money for a re-election bid three years hence, according to a recent disclosure filing for his new committee, Ron Roberts ...

A Candlelight Vigil in Santee

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On August 22, Tracy Moe plans to return to the same Santee neighborhood where her seventeen-year -old daughter, Kelsea Lyn, died from a methadone overdose in 2006. Moe's return marks 5 years since her daughter complained to a friend's mother ...

Jack in the Box: More Burgers, Fewer Bucks

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Local fast food burger peddler Jack in the Box announced third quarter earnings today. For the company’s fiscal quarter ended July 10, overall earnings were down $5.5 million over the same quarter in 2010, dropping to $18.7 million from $24.2 ...

More Race Meets Coming to Del Mar?

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There's no question that Hollywood Park Racetrack in Inglewood is closing. Currently, a land development company waits for the right time to turn the tract of land into a 238-acre mixed-use community. When that happens, race meets and the thousands ...

OB Residents Unhappy with Increased Density

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A group of about 30 local residents gathered at the Ocean Beach Recreation Center for a public meeting concerning the Ocean Beach Community Planning Update Project. The meeting was hosted by Jeffrey Szymanski, an associate planner with the city’s Development ...

AEG Raises Farmers Field Lobbying Ante

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Earlier today, AEG, short for Anschutz Entertainment Group, got the green light from the L.A. city council to proceed with the next step of its planned Farmers Field football stadium, one prospective tenant of which may be the San Diego ...

San Diego Is iPad Friendly

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San Diegans love the iPad and other computer tablets, at least that's what a survey conducted for the September issue of Men's Health Magazine. According to the survey, San Diego ranks as the seventh most-iPad-friendly city in the country. The ...

Platinum Equity Buys Publishing Software Maker

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Platinum Equity, Beverly Hills-based private equity firm that owns the Union-Tribune, has bought Denver's Quark, a software company that revolutionized magazine and newspaper industries with page layout software for desktop computers. Under previous management, the U-T had been slow adapting ...

Fed Comes to Market's Rescue

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As expected (but in an unusual way), the Federal Reserve came to Wall Street's rescue today (Aug. 9). After the stock market chaos of the last several weeks, observers had expected the central bank to pump in liquidity to buoy ...

Defense Contractors Look to Cash In

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Locally based GreenHouse Holdings, Inc. expects to reap profits from Department of Defense cost cutting efforts. The company, described in a press release as an “integrated energy solutions provider and developer of eco-friendly infrastructure,” believes its products will help trim ...

Santee Considers Backyard Chickens

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On Wednesday, members of Santee's city council will ask city staff to come up with new regulations that would allow chickens to run free on residential properties. The discussion was first broached by Mayor Randy Voepel during a June 8 ...

"Secure Communities" Program No Longer Voluntary

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Last Friday, U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement announced it was terminating memorandums of understanding it had entered into with 39 states regarding its Secure Communities program. The program itself, however, is not changing. Under Secure Communities, the FBI gathers fingerprints ...

San Diego Does Less Bad Than Nation in Zillow Numbers

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San Diego metro area home values continue to drop, but at a slower rate than the nation's, according to numbers released today (Aug. 9) by Zillow Inc. San Diego's home values declined 0.2% from the first to second quarter; the ...

Christian Science Monitor Investigates Mojahedin-e Khalq

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At left: head of MEK, Maryam-Rajavi The Christian Science Monitor is out with a lengthy investigative piece today about the Mojahedin-e Khalq and efforts by its supporters to remove it from the U.S. State Department's list of international terrorist organizations. ...

El Cajon Looks To Reduce Abandoned Shopping Carts

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On Tuesday, El Cajon's city councilmembers and mayor will consider a new law aimed at reducing the number of abandoned shopping carts scattered around the City. "Shopping carts have been commandeered by homeless persons to store and move their possessions ...

Bayshore Bikeway Expands

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Ground broke Friday on a 1.8 mile long extension of the Bayshore Bikeway, a planned 24 mile cycling route that will almost circle the bay when completed, requiring a ferry to or from Coronado. The new span, running between H ...

The Talk of the Town (Car Wash) in Escondido

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For nearly eight years, residents of the New Tradition subdivision in south Escondido have spoken out against a proposal to build a massive car-wash complex on the corner of Brotherton Road and Centre City Parkway. They say the project, aptly ...

For Piece of the Action, UCSD Hypes the Chargers (Updated)

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It may seem like a strange alliance to some, but state-run UCSD Health System, the hospital giant expected to gross some $900 million this year, is helping to market the San Diego Chargers to women in exchange for a piece ...

Canine "Annie" Star Orphaned, Seeks Home

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County Animal Services are once again looking for a home for Mocha, described as “[a] talented and friendly terrier-blend who became a local stage star.” The five year-old female dog was relinquished to animal services earlier this year. In May, ...

SEC Enters Hard Rock Hotel Appeal

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The Securities and Exchange Commission has filed a friend of the court brief in favor of those suing Tarsadia Hotel, parent of Hard Rock Hotel. Tarsadia sold hotel rooms to the public. People could only occupy the rooms for 28 ...

U.S. Loses AAA Rating from S&P

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Standard & Poor's today (Aug. 5) downgraded the rating on United States debt from the highest AAA to AA+, and said the outlook was negative. The recently announced plan to narrow the deficit fell short of S&P's threshold. Significantly, S&P ...

Novatel, Mad Catz Stocks Walloped

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Two San Diego tech stocks got thumped today (Aug. 5). Shares of Novatel Wireless, maker of modems and wireless networking gear, plunged 28.39% to $3.33. The company's second quarter loss narrowed to 12 cents per share from 70 cents in ...

Local Law Firm Focuses on WebMD

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In a press release issued today, Robbins Umeda LLP announced it is commencing an investigation of WebMD Health Corporation. San Diego based Robbins describes itself as “a shareholder-rights litigation firm.” The focus of the investigation is on whether or not ...

Fletcher Backer and Pot Foe Faces Uranium Cleanup Woes

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At left: Cotter uranium mine The cleanup of an old uranium processing mill in Colorado owned by La Jolla-based defense contractor General Atomics has hit yet another snag, with managers of the plant requesting that regulators allow them to stop ...

Sempra to Quadruple Nevada Solar Generation

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San Diego-based Sempra Generation announced a 25 year deal yesterday to sell 150 megawatts of solar-generated electricity to northern California utility Pacific Gas & Electric. The power will come from an expansion of Sempra Generation’s Copper Mountain Solar complex in ...

Jobs Report Better Than Expected. Market Relieved

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The U.S. created 117,000 jobs in July, more than the 85,000 economists expected. The Labor Department reported that the unemployment rate dipped to 9.1% from 9.2% in June, although economists said that improvement was mainly a result of people leaving ...

Bridgepoint's Debt Ratio Staggeringly High

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Education Sector, a think tank, has come up with a ratio to measure the burgeoning debt problems in higher education. It's called the debt to credential ratio, or the total amount of debt piled up by undergrads divided by the ...

Stocks Plummet. Next Up: More Liquidity

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 513 or 4.31% today (Aug. 4). The Nasdaq swooned 5.08%, and the Standard & Poor's 500 dropped 4.78%. Stocks in Europe sold off, too; problems in countries such as Italy are adding to previous ...

County to Offer Free Whooping Cough Vaccinations

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The San Diego County Health and Human Services agency is planning six clinics in the coming week to provide free and, as of this year, mandatory, pertussis booster (Tdap) shots for middle and high school-aged students. A new state law ...

Uptown Residents Call for An End to Illegal Demolition

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Residents in the Uptown communities of North Park, Hillcrest, University Heights, and Mission Hills have long called for increased city oversight when it comes to the preservation of historical structures. For the past two years, residents have asked the City ...

Special Interests Raise Big Cash for "Voice of Downtown"

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The Downtown San Diego Partnership, which calls itself "the Voice of Downtown" on its website, will be able to turn up the volume considerably, thanks to its political action committee, San Diego Jobs PAC, which has raised considerable money in ...

Shopping Cart Bandits

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La Mesa Police are looking for two females suspected of preying on elderly women in supermarkets. The pair are suspected of involvement in at least three similar thefts. In the first known case, a 65 year-old woman was shopping at ...

Chamber of Commerce Backs Pension Reform

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The San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce, speaking on behalf of its members and also “representing over 400,000 chamber members' employees,” has thrown its support behind the Comprehensive Pension Reform Initiative, according to a news release issued yesterday. “If the ...

SDPD Intelligence Hires ex-CIA Agent, Targets Somali Community

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San Diego's growing community of Somali refugees and its alleged links to Harakat Shabaab al-Mujahidin, a revolutionary group said by some U.S. intelligence officials to have ties to Al Qaeda, has become a prime target of the San Diego Police ...

Brown Vetoes Paid Petitioner Restrictions

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Governor Jerry Brown on Monday vetoed SB 168, which would have placed a ban on pay-per-signature petitioners. In recent months the bill had passed both the Senate and Assembly with greater than 60% support each time. The bill would have ...

SOHO Sues City Over Plaza de Panama Plan

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Two weeks after San Diego's city councilmembers voted to enter into a partnership with Irwin Jacobs and his Plaza de Panama Committee, members of Save Our Heritage Organisation continue to fight. This time, however, the fight will not go down ...

Cockfight Crackdown

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The San Diego County Board of Supervisors is set to pass a law limiting the number of roosters that an individual owner can keep. But instead of noise reduction, the law intends to target cockfighting. The ordinance would limit property ...

Leap, Bridgepoint Shares Creamed

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On a day (August 2) in which the overall market tanked, shares of Leap Wireless and Bridgepoint Education were among the biggest losers. Wireless service provider Leap Wireless shares plunged 21% to $10.27, greatly because competitor MetroPCS reported disappointing results. ...

Plundering Historic Plaques

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Owners of historically-designated homes in Uptown are on the lookout for thieves. The thieves are not the run of the mill hoodlums but instead are run of the Mills Act burglars. The thieves are ripping off gold plaques from historically ...

"Dallas' Most Evil Genius" Funds La Jolla Super PAC

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Americans for Rick Perry, the La Jolla-based independent super PAC backing the GOP Texas governor's possible presidential bid, collected a total of $193,000 during the first six months of the year, according to a report filed with the Federal Election ...

Operation Tidal Wave Targets North County Gangs, Drugs

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Over 250 personnel representing 21 local, state, and federal law enforcement groups joined forces on Saturday for Operation Tidal Wave. Funded by a $19.2 million Department of Homeland Security grant, the action was “focused on the disruption and suppression of ...

No Fear Sells Out

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Carlsbad-based No Fear has found buyers for both its trademarks and intellectual property and its inventory and store operations. Because the buyer of the stores, Ryderz Compound Inc., has intentions to continue to operate the stores as a going concern, ...

DeMaio Filing: $541,990 Includes $2000 from Molasky Family

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GOP candidate for San Diego mayor and city councilman Carl DeMaio raised a total of $541,990 during the first half of the year, according to his campaign disclosure filing posted online today by the city clerk. Total expenditures were listed ...

Maienschein Collects $43,600 For Assembly Bid

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Though new district lines aren't officially cast in stone, GOP ex-San Diego city councilman Brian Maienschein has raised $43,600 in the first half of this year for a 77th district Assembly campaign, according to his campaign filing. Many donors, including ...

CPUC Decision Blocks Data Sharing on Consumer Energy Use

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The California Public Utilities Commission last week approved rules that would prohibit utility companies from disclosing customer information gathered via smart meters without that customer’s consent. The decision took effect immediately on Tuesday, with utilities such as San Diego Gas ...

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