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Stories for March 7, 2007

Bigger Tax Refunds

March 7
KPBS Public Broadcasting

Could you be eligible for a bigger tax refund this year? On Wednesday’s Full Focus, we’ll tell you why thousands of Californians aren’t claiming refunds they’re entitled to.

State's Rural Schools at Stake as Federal Funding Expires

March 7
By Marianne Russ and KPBS Public Broadcasting

Rural schools in California are facing cuts because a federal funding program has expired. And one lawmaker says it's time for the state to step in. From Sacramento, Marianne Russ reports.

New Bills Aim to Fight Shortage of Math/Science Teachers

March 7
By Jenny O'Mara and KPBS Public Broadcasting

Facing an expected shortage of math and science teachers in California, a state senator is pushing legislation to lure more people to the job. He was joined by the first American woman in space at the state Capitol on Wednesday. From Sacramento, Jenny O'Mara reports.

S.D. Ethics Commission Proposes Lobbyist Registration Law

March 7
By Alison St John and KPBS Public Broadcasting

Lobbyists are not pleased with new lobbying laws proposed by the city of San Diego’s Ethics Commission. KPBS reporter Alison St John has more.

Escondido Police Tighten Leash on Suspected Gangsters

March 7
KPBS Public Broadcasting

Police served dozens of suspected gang members with court orders forbidding them to congregate in public spaces, flash gang signs or wear certain clothes.

Tijuana Sewage Treatment Plan Murky

March 7
KPBS Public Broadcasting

Beach closures and polluted habitat are common in Imperial Beach and the Tijuana Estuary. The problem has been decades in the making as sewage treatment has not kept pace with the growth of Mexico's fourth largest city. Less than 60 percent of Tijuana's sewage is treated, with the remainder flowing into our country. Attempts have been made to solve the problem on this side of the border, but results do not meet United States Clean Water Act standards. The latest effort, the Bajagua project, is now bumping up against deadlines that could spell its doom.

Errors Prompt Panel to Advise Prescription Clarity Mandate

March 7
By Kenny Goldberg and KPBS Public Broadcasting

A state panel on medication errors has issued a prescription for improving patient safety. The panel says faulty medical systems and processes need to be revamped. KPBS reporter Kenny Goldberg has more.

Former President Clinton Speaks in San Diego

March 7
KPBS Public Broadcasting

One of the world's most sought-after public speakers was in town last night, at the invitation of the United Jewish Federation of San Diego County. Former President Bill Clinton addressed an adoring crowd of about 2,000 people packed into a ballroom at the Manchester Hyatt Hotel. Clinton talked about making the world a better place through philanthropy, civic activism and politics. Full Focus reporter Amita Sharma was there. She's here now to tell us more.

Calif. Grid Operator: Summer Blackouts Will Hinge on A/C Use

March 7
By Andrew Phelps and KPBS Public Broadcasting

The state's power-grid operator says there should be enough electricity to go around this summer. But blistering hot days could bring blackouts if Californians don't conserve. KPBS Radio's Andrew Phelps has the details.

Hefty Fines for Mini-Dorm Residents who Disrupt Neighbors

March 7
By Ana Tintocalis and KPBS Public Broadcasting

San Diego State students who live in so-called mini dorms will be slapped with a hefty fine if they disturb their neighbors. KPBS Reporter Ana Tintocalis has more.

Pulitzer Prize-Winning Novelist Skewers Hollywood

March 7
KPBS Public Broadcasting

Pulitzer Prize-winning author, Jane Smiley, joins us to talk about her new novel, “Ten Days in the Hills.”

Absentee Ballots May Decide Tight Vote in Solana Beach

March 7
By Ed Joyce and KPBS Public Broadcasting

We should know by this time tomorrow the outcome of a measure to limit the size of homes in some neighborhoods of Solana Beach. KPBS reporter Ed Joyce has details.

Radio Anchor Tells of Struggle With Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

March 7
KPBS Public Broadcasting

We speak to Jeff Bell, author of "Rewind, Replay, Repeat," about his struggle with obsessive-compulsive disorder. Bell is a radio anchor in San Francisco who kept his OCD a secret for many years. We also talk to Dr. Sanjaya Saxena about the symptoms of OCD, and the treatment options available to those who suffer from the disorder.

Tax Filers Could Receive Bigger Refunds

March 7
By Heather Hill and KPBS Public Broadcasting

Could you be eligible for a bigger tax refund check this year and not know it? The Internal Revenue Service says thousands of California taxpayers aren't claiming the refunds they qualify to get. Full Focus reporter Heather Hill has more on what you should know before filing.

Exploitation and Discrimination Focus of International Women's Day

March 7
KPBS Public Broadcasting

This Thursday is International Women's Day and the issues some women, and even young girls, face include: trafficking, sexual exploitation, child soldiers, lack of education and genital cutting. The Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice at the University of San Diego is hosting a breakfast this Thursday titled, Global Dispatches: Ending Violence and Discrimination Against the Girl Child. We talk about the issues facing exploited female children.

Solana Beach Votes on Neighborhood Preservation Ordinance

March 7
KPBS Public Broadcasting

Solana Beach voters took to the polls on Tuesday to vote on an ordinance that would limit the size of homes in certain parts of the city. We are joined by representatives from both sides of the argument.

Deputy District Attorney: Latino Hate Crimes on the Rise

March 7
By Amy Isackson and KPBS Public Broadcasting

A San Diego Deputy District Attorney says he's seen a rise in hate crimes against Latinos in San Diego County during the last six months. KPBS Reporter Amy Isackson has details.

Judge Limits Defense Access to State Secrets in CIA Case

March 7
By Allison Hoffman and KPBS Public Broadcasting

Defense attorneys representing a former top CIA official will only have limited access to classified evidence and will be subject to stringent disclosure rules under an order issued by the federal judge overseeing the case.

Choreographing the San Diego Campaign Visit

March 7
KPBS Public Broadcasting

Presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani visited San Diego for lunch yesterday. Well, he's not officially a candidate yet. Giuliani has an "exploratory committee" to see if he'll run. And he didn't really stop by to eat lunch. He shook as many hands as possible in between fund raisers. The news media just happened to be there waiting -- and so was KPBS Radio's Andrew Phelps.