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Stories for July 5, 2007

Protect Your Home From Wildfire

July 5
KPBS Public Broadcasting

This fire season is shaping up to be grueling. Drought has turned brush into kindling, and there are surprisingly few city workers to thin that fire-prone vegetation. As Rebecca Tolin reports, the city of San Diego is a microcosm of the fire danger faced around the county.

Sex and the City, The Movie

July 5
By Angela Carone and Culture Lust by Angela Carone

Yesterday,

North County Times Publisher Steps Down, But Not Its Circulation

July 5
KPBS Public Broadcasting

This is a tough time for daily newspapers. Circulation is steadily decreasing as people find other ways to get the news. Locally, the San Diego Union-Tribune and the Los Angeles Times have lost readers. But not the North County Times, which printed its first edition in 1995. Its publisher has been there from day one, but is about to step away.

California Grocery Workers Prepare to Strike as Negotiations Stall

July 5
By Andrew Phelps and KPBS Public Broadcasting

Workers at Southern California's Albertons, Vons and Ralph's still don't have a new contract. The unions are already preparing for a possible work stoppage. So, is a strike imminent? KPBS reporter Andrew Phelps is here to try to answer that question.

Culture Lust by Angela Carone

July 5
By Acarone and KPBS Public Broadcasting

60+ Nurses, Doctors Petition Against Health Director of Local Prison

July 5
KPBS Public Broadcasting

More than 60 doctors and nurses at a state prison have signed a petition expressing a lack of confidence in the facility's director of nursing, according to a union official.

Wary Grid Managers Say California Power Crisis Averted -- For Today

July 5
By Erik Anderson and KPBS Public Broadcasting

California's Power Grid managers say they should have enough juice to keep the state's lights on today. There was concern that a heat wave in Southern California might stress power supplies today.

Committee to Suss Out Controversial Exodus at State Air Board

July 5
By Jenny O'Mara, Capital Public Radio and KPBS Public Broadcasting

The recent firing and resignation at the state agency that oversees air quality rules in California is prompting lots of questions from top lawmakers. A special hearing about it has been called for Friday. Jenny O'Mara reports from Sacramento.

Professor Says Air Pollution is Worse Inside Your Car Than Out

July 5
By Amy Isackson and KPBS Public Broadcasting

Researchers in San Diego and Tijuana want to know if longer border wait times pose health problems for commuters. To that end, they're arming 100 volunteer border crossers with air quality monitoring devices. KPBS reporter Amy Isackson has details.

Chula Vista Councilman Castaneda Indicted on 13 Perjury Charges

July 5
By Nicole Lozare and KPBS Public Broadcasting

Chula Vista Councilman Steve Castaneda was indicted on 15 charges today. Castaneda plead not guilty. KPBS reporter Nicole Lozare has more.

Squirrel Nut Zippers Come to San Diego this Weekend

July 5
KPBS Public Broadcasting

We talk about an art show featuring paintings described as "zedist" opens at a Normal Heights gallery and the Squirrel Nut Zippers are on the road to a comeback, stopping at the Belly Up Tavern along the way.

Transformers Turned Into Graphic Novel by Local Publisher

July 5
KPBS Public Broadcasting

The popularity of graphic novels has grown in the last 10 years. Hollywood has taken notice and chain bookstores like Borders have established separate sections for them. San Diego is home to a small but prominent publisher in the graphic novel market. It's called IDW Publishing and they've just published graphic novels based on the new Transformer movie.

History Lessons for Staying Cool this Summer

July 5
KPBS Public Broadcasting

How do San Diegans deal with heat? Back in the day, it was not as simple as turning on the air conditioning. San Diego Historical Society curator Joel Levantez describes how Coronado's tent city, Carlsbad's lagoon, and the man-made Mission Bay offered "cool" alternatives to San Diegans.

Amidst Stalled Talks, Grocery Workers Say Strikes Aren't Far Off

July 5
By Erik Anderson and KPBS Public Broadcasting

Southern California grocery workers say they are getting ready for a possible work stoppage. Union members are gathering today in San Diego and Los Angeles to prepare picket signs and build up a union-maintained food reserve.

A Green Move By Local Kids: Cleaning Up July 4 Beach Garbage

July 5
By Ana Tintocalis and KPBS Public Broadcasting

A group of socially-minded school kids participated in a post-Independence Day cleanup effort at Pacific Beach on Thursday. KPBS reporter Ana Tintocalis has more.

Choice and Regret: Diverse Perspectives on Abortion

July 5
KPBS Public Broadcasting

In April, the Supreme Court upheld the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act. In its decision, the court also suggested some women may regret their decision to have an abortion. Historically, the abortion debate has been about the rights of the fetus versus the rights of the woman. That's changing, as some anti-abortion activists argue abortion hurts women, pitting women against women. KPBS reporter Joanne Faryon discusses the ruling that inspired her series and introduces three women with different perspectives on the issue of abortion.

Even After Rate Hikes, San Diego's Water Woes to Continue

July 5
By Eric Niiler and KPBS Public Broadcasting

Next month, San Diegans will receive bigger water bills, and the rates will continue to grow over the next four years. The city will use the additional revenue to pay for a backlog of sewer system upgrades. But it's unclear whether the money will be enough. As Eric Niiler reports from Washington, the federal government has recognized that cities like San Diego need help, but officials can't agree on a way forward.