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La Mesa California

Let the Celebrations Return

Routines similar to prepandemic years are returning. My effort to keep drunken drivers off the road is not ending. When I was sixteen, 30 years ago, I was hit by a drunken driver. I suffer daily: My gait and speech were affected and I lost my driving and hearing abilities.…

Housing study: Vacancies diminishing as rents increase

In a recent study from the Southern California Rental Housing Association Spring 2022 Vacancy and Rental Rate Study showed a dramatic decline in the vacancy rate, dropping from 2.91% in Spring 2021 to 1.25% in Spring 2022. The city of San Diego vacancy rate decreased from 3.3% to less than…

El Cajon budget may lift freeze on filling voids

El Cajon City Council received its Fiscal Year 2022-23 preliminary annual budget report on June 14. City Council will be finalized and adopt the budget on June 28. City Manager Graham Mitchell said that the city came out of the COVID-19 pandemic fiscally intact, and that the 2022-23 budget assumes…

New roles for Grossmont-Cuyamaca leaders

Nicole “Nikki” Salgado and Kerry Kilber Rebman are taking on new roles at Grossmont-Cuyamaca College District, Salgado has been named Vice President of Administrative Services at Cuyamaca College while Kilber Rebman is the Associate Vice Chancellor of Technology for GCCCD. According to Chancellor Lynn Neault: “Nikki and Kerry will provide…

Festival organizers set sights on rec center hours

A group of Lemon Grove residents are organizing a festival in the hope of gaining more public access to the city’s recreation center. The inaugural Citrus Festival is scheduled for July 9, from 3-7 p.m. at the Lemon Grove Recreation Center, 3131 School Lane in Lemon Grove. Citrus Festival team…

Council approves balanced Santee budget with planned salary increases

The city of Santee approved a proposed $53 million operating budget for 2022-23 during the June 8 City Council meeting. The two largest sources of city income stem from property taxes and sales taxes. Out of the $53 million budget, $23.2 million comes from property taxes and makes up 43%…

Early results setting stage

As of June 8, the primary 2022 election showed California state Governor Gavin Newsom in the lead at 52.9% with Brian Dahle trailing behind him at 22.5%. La Mesa resident Shirley Weber held the lead as Secretary of State incumbent at 56.2% with Rob Bernosky behind her at 26.9%. At…

Teen’s hearing in Lakeside stabbing case rescheduled

A 16-year old boy who allegedly stabbed a 16-year old Black girl on June 6 in a potential hate crime was scheduled for a readiness hearing on June 6 in juvenile court. However, that hearing has been postponed until June 21. A readiness hearing is the second court appearance for…

Flag Day parade returns to La Mesa

Families with young children and friendly dogs in tow cheered and waved for local organizations marching in the downtown La Mesa Flag Day parade on June 4. The parade was held ten days before the nationally observed date of June 14 which former President Harry Truman signed into law in…

Contenders hoping to make it to next round of sheriff search

CHUCK BATTLE Chuck Battle OCCUPATION: Owns Sting Productions Investigations, a defense investigation firm specializing in forensic examination of police reports. AGE: 72 EXPERIENCE: Served 14 years with San Diego Police Department, then 15 years with San Diego County Sheriff’s Department in Corrections, then Law Enforcement as a deputy before retiring…

Grieving during a pandemic

With COVID-19, due to lockdowns, social distancing, all those restrictions put in place to prevent the spread of disease, bereaved people may not have found that their needs for grieving were met. People were separated from their loved ones at the end of life. Hospitals were not allowing people in…

Water purification advances

On June 1, elected official, water industry leaders and city representatives’ broke ground on the East County Advanced Water Purification Program at the future site of the East County AWP Joint Powers Authority in Santee. Scheduled for completion in 2026, this project is a groundbreaking environmental project for East County,…

COMMENCING NEW BEGINNINGS

Grossmont Union High School district is holding in-person commencement ceremonies for all 20,000 students in the district this June after two years of virtual celebrations. GUHSD Superintendent Theresa Kemper said the class of 2022 and their families deserve the pomp and circumstance of traditional in-person graduations. “Consider everything that the…

Nearly $10,000 raised at Art in the Park

La Mesa Park and Recreation Foundation Director Misty Thompson said the inaugural Art In the Park fundraiser, which was created in just six weeks, raised about $9,000 on May 21 for future community park events. “This is the first year, it is a brand new event. We were in a…

Gunderson wants to build relationships as county’s sheriff

John Gunderson, 46, is a nonpartisan candidate for San Diego County Sheriff who does not accept donations, does not solicit endorsements and believes the Sheriff should remain apolitical. He said he’s never really thought about emulating a particular person in law enforcement, but generally believes any good leader provides goals…

Legal, medical experts talk reproductive justice

On May 5, practicing obstetrician-gynecologist Akilah Weber, who currently serves in the California Assembly, and state Attorney General Rob Bonta addressed how California will respond if Roe v. Wade, a 1973 Supreme court case which ruled the right to abortion is a fundamental liberty protected by the Fourteenth Amendment of…

La Mesa mulls multiple homeless initiatives

The La Mesa City Council on Tuesday accepted and filed the first quarterly Homeless Outreach and Mobile Engagement report of 2022. The HOME program is a shared initiative between the city and La Mesa Police Department which provides a trauma-informed, housing-first approach to addressing homelessness in La Mesa. Between January…

Local filmmakers join GI Film Festival

Returning to the big screen and virtually, the GI Film Festival is celebrating its 15th year May 17- 22 at the Museum of Photographic Arts in Balboa Park. This year’s lineup features 26 films with full-length documentaries, narrative stories, animated shorts, student projects, and local and international films. Along with…

Western Days, rodeo return

Western Days is back in Lakeside this year with the 57th Annual Western Days Parade and the 58th Lakeside Rodeo coming back in action April 21-24. This year’s parade starts at 9:35 a.m. on April 23, traveling through historic downtown Lakeside, with around 115 contingents in the parade this year.…

Lakeside a buzz with haircuts

What began six years ago to help the unsheltered in Lakeside with a small table of pastries and about 10 haircuts, has now turned into a full-scale day of help for the homeless, with a lot of help from Lakeside’s Reflections Salon & Day Spa, and a host of volunteers.…

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