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Stories for June 26, 2009

A Capitol Fourth 2009

June 26
A Capitol Fourth 2009 Tease photo

On July 4th, there's no place like the nation's capital for America's biggest birthday party broadcast. Featuring the most spectacular fireworks display anywhere in the nation, the 29th annual broadcast of "A Capitol Fourth" airs live from the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol. The star-spangled party features special performances by some of the country's best-known and award-winning musical artists in performance with the National Symphony Orchestra under the direction of top pops conductor Erich Kunzel. Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning actor Jimmy Smits returns to host the biggest and brightest birthday party in the country, featuring for the first time ever, Barry Manilow, who will both open and close the concert broadcast with a stirring medley of hits and patriotic classics along with the National Symphony Orchestra and the Choral Arts Society of Washington.

3,2,1 Fireworks

June 26
3,2,1 Fireworks Tease photo

The explosive special "3, 2, 1 Fireworks" takes viewers on a behind-the-scenes tour of the Washington, D.C. July 4th celebration, featuring one of the largest and most colorful fireworks displays in the world. Shot in high-definition, the special captures every step of the renowned fireworks production. It opens in China as the crew observes the making of fireworks and dazzling new pyrotechnic effects.

$21 Million in Federal Stimulus Funds to Expand Otay Mesa Border Crossing

June 26

$21 million in federal stimulus funds will go toward remodeling the Otay Mesa border crossing. Officials say this will pay for land and design costs.

Public Health Advocates Push Higher Alcohol Taxes

June 26
By Kenny Goldberg

Public health advocates are urging lawmakers to raise alcohol taxes to help close California's massive budget deficit. Alcohol taxes haven't been increased in the state since 1992.

Chéri

June 26
By Beth Accomando
Tease photo

French novelist Colette may have been as famous for her sometimes scandalous life as for the literary works she produced. On film, the musical adaptation of her novel "Gigi" is probably the best known. But now a pair of her works have been combined to make "Chéri" (opening June 26 at Landmark's La Jolla Village and Hillcrest Cinemas) into a star vehicle for Michelle Pfeiffer.

Nightly Business Report

June 26
Tease photo

NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, television’s longest-running evening business news broadcast, features in-depth coverage and analysis of the biggest financial news stories of the day and access to some of the world’s top business leaders and policy makers. Co-anchored by award-winning journalists Susie Gharib and Tyler Mathisen, NBR produced by CNBC explains the day’s leading stories in a comprehensive and accessible way to public television viewers.

Stories from Baghdad U.S.A.

June 26
By Beth Accomando
Tease photo

“Stories form Baghdad U.S.A.” is a new documentary from local filmmakers Kevin King and Alex Farnsley, and it will have its premiere this Sunday, June 28, at 1:30pm at the San Diego County Library El Cajon Branch. The screening is free and the documentary was shot in El Cajon. Although I was not able to preview this film, I have shown works by the filmmakers at "Film School Confidential: A Showcase of San Diego and Tijuana Filmmakers," and know that they are a talented pair.

Donated Lifeguard Towers Need Rescuing from Tijuana Parking Lot

June 26
By Amy Isackson

At least five of the lifeguard towers a San Diego group donated to Mexico need some rescuing. As KPBS Reporter Amy Isackson explains, the towers are stuck in a parking lot blocks from the beach.

Mexican Migration Director Pleased With Obama's Immigration Approach

June 26

The Director of Mexico's Federal Migration Institute says she's pleased President Barack Obama favors good policy over short term politics on the issue of immigration reform. As KPBS Reporter Amy Isackson explains, Cecilia Romero made the comments during a talk at the Institute of the Americas in La Jolla.

City and County Budgets for Next Fiscal Year

June 26
Editors Roundtable

Next week, the new fiscal year begins and our city and county governments will be working with new budgets. How have local government spending priorities changed in the last year?

City Council Votes to Repeal "Don't Ask Don't Tell"

June 26
San Diego Week
Editors Roundtable

The San Diego City Council passed a resolution to support the repeal of the military's "Don't Ask Don't Tell" policy. Why did the city council weigh in on a national issue like "Don't Ask Don't Tell"?

Building a New Downtown Library

June 26
San Diego Week
Editors Roundtable

Has new life been breathed into the proposal to build a new downtown library? Earlier this week, the San Diego Unified school board agreed to put $20 million toward a proposal to build a school-library combo downtown.

Water Conservation to be a Permanent Way of Life

June 26
By Dwane Brown, Nick Stoffel

The last time San Diego County could rely only on local supply for all its water needs was 1946. It will never happen again. San Diego's water future will certainly be drier than most of us are used to. KPBS reporter Alan Ray talked with Dennis Cushman, the Assistant General Manager of the San Diego County Water Authority.

High Carbon Dioxide Levels Cause Abnormally Large Fish Ear Bones

June 26
By Ed Joyce

New research from UC San Diego shows that corals and soft-shelled creatures may not be the only species hurt by rising levels of carbon dioxide levels in the ocean.

SD Payroll Drops

June 26
By Katie Orr

San Diego will end its fiscal year on Tuesday spending 2.5 percent less on payroll costs than last year.

San Diego Tests New Emergency Response Technologies

June 26
By Alison St John
San Diego Tests New Emergency Response Technologies Tease photo

This week, San Diego State University was one of five sites around the nation testing new emergency response technologies. The exercises demonstrated tools developed for the military that are now available for civilian first responders. A lot of money is being invested in powerful new surveillance tools, but are these making us any safer?

Remembering Michael Jackson, 'King Of Pop'

June 26
Lynn Neary, NPR
Remembering Michael Jackson, 'King Of Pop' Tease photo

We watched Michael Jackson grow up: He was a baby-faced boy with a captivating smile and an amazing voice who stole the show right out from under his big brothers. We saw him morph into a modern-day song-and-dance man, so light on his feet he seemed to be moving on air.