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Stories for January 7, 2011

Insight: Feds Say Cut Down The Fluoride

Jan. 7
By Tom Fudge

Just as San Diego’s getting ready to fluoridate its water, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is recommending cities use a lower concentration of fluoride… lower than what San Diego plans to use.

Qualcomm Starts 2011 With Large Acquisition

Jan. 7
By Kyla Calvert

Qualcomm started the new year as a big news maker. It bought one company for $3 billion and partnered with several others to improve wireless offerings.

Assemblyman Trying To Cap Pensions At $245k Per Year

Jan. 7
California Capitol Network

A California Assemblyman wants to cap pension benefits for public employees making more than $245,000 a year. That’s the ceiling under IRS rules. However, the University of California has a waiver that allows it to grant larger pensions for employees with salaries above that limit.

E-Books Poses Challenges For Nation's Libraries

E-Books Poses Challenges For Nation's Libraries

Jan. 7
By Ana Tintocalis

Librarians from across the country are in San Diego for the next several days taking part in a national conference about the state of libraries. Organizers say one challenge most libraries are facing is the e-book revolution.

Brown Saves $7 Million By Slashing Offices

Jan. 7
Associated Press

Gov. Jerry Brown says he is eliminating the Secretary of Education's office, slashing the governor's office by a quarter and giving back most of the money budgeted for his transition.

Tease photo for Project Offers Help And Hope To San Diego Homeless

Project Offers Help And Hope To San Diego Homeless

Jan. 7
By Megan Burke, Gloria Penner

Hundreds of homeless San Diegans were at Golden Hall this week looking for help. They got an outpouring, from haircuts and dental care to blankets and toiletries, from more than 60 organizations and scores of volunteers. Tom Fudge, KPBS reporter and author of the blog On-Ramp, has the details on Project Homeless Connect.

Tease photo for Sentence Reduction Controversy

Sentence Reduction Controversy

Jan. 7
By Megan Burke, Gloria Penner

San Diego legal leaders this week blasted a last minute decision made by former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. He reduced the sentence of Esteban Nunez, from 16 years to 7 years. Nunez, who pled guilty to voluntary manslaughter for his role in the stabbing death of a man near SDSU in 2008, is the son of former state Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez. Tony Perry, San Diego bureau chief of the Los Angeles Times, explains the reaction to the decision.

Tease photo for Library Leaders Face Tough Choices

Library Leaders Face Tough Choices

Jan. 7
By Megan Burke, Gloria Penner

America's libraries are being forced to redefine and advocate for their continuing value in society. Here in San Diego, public library hours have been cut at a time when library use is at an all time high. Roberta Stevens, President of the American Library Association, talks about the organization's plans to address challenges and identify solutions.

Tease photo for SDSU Prof Helps Hundreds Launch College Careers

SDSU Prof Helps Hundreds Launch College Careers

Jan. 7
By Dwane Brown, Megan Burke, Gloria Penner

Professor M.C.Madhavan is a Fulbright scholar and semi-retired economics professor at San Diego State University. He's led United Nations development programs and was an economist for the World Bank. But he may be best known for founding the San Diego Indian American Society which established the Mahatma Gandhi Scholarship. More than 400 San Diego students have received this award since 1984. Dwane Brown spoke with professor Madhavan and found out what motivates him to continue to make a difference in the lives of youth in San Diego and abroad.

First Case Of Chicken Pox This Year At Santee Elementary School

Jan. 7
City News Service

The first outbreak of chickenpox of the year infected five children at Hill Creek Elementary School in Santee, the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency reported today.

Tease photo for NOVA: Deadliest Earthquakes

NOVA: Deadliest Earthquakes

Jan. 7

In 2010, epic earthquakes all over the planet delivered one of the worst annual death tolls ever recorded. NOVA follows teams of scientists in Haiti and Chile after the deadly quakes in those countries as they try to gather data to aid in preventing future disasters.

Carlsbad Middle School One Of Five In CA Given Honor

Jan. 7
City News Service

Calavera Hills Middle School in Carlsbad was named today as one of "California's Schools to Watch-Taking Center Stage" model campuses by the state Department of Education.

Tease photo for AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: U.S. Grant: Warrior

AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: U.S. Grant: Warrior

Jan. 7

Few public figures have ever held such a firm grip on the American popular imagination as Ulysses S. Grant. The greatest hero of the Civil War, Ulysses S. Grant was a brilliant military strategist who rose from obscurity to a rank held previously only by George Washington. However, the strength of the Confederate resistance forced Grant into a hard war that destroyed the South and led to his being labeled "a butcher."

Chelsea King's Parents Decide Against Suing State Over Daughter's Murder

Jan. 7
By Amita Sharma

The parents say every day spent in court would only delay their family's healing.

Tease photo for DeMaio First To File Papers To Run For Mayor In 2012

DeMaio First To File Papers To Run For Mayor In 2012

Jan. 7
City News Service

An incumbent San Diego city councilman is the first to file papers to run for mayor in 2012, although he said he has not decided whether to seek the office.

Tease photo for ANTIQUES ROADSHOW: Miami Beach, Florida - Hour Two

ANTIQUES ROADSHOW: Miami Beach, Florida - Hour Two

Jan. 7
By Jennifer Robinson

In Miami Beach, Florida, host Mark L. Walberg is beachcombing for tips from appraiser Kevin Zavian about how to buy and sell gold. Highlights include an archive of correspondence and photos, circa 1965, marking the friendship between a cigar-loving Winston Churchill and the guest’s Cuban great aunt and uncle; a stunning 1908 example of New Orleans’ Newcomb College pottery; and an heirloom collection of vintage diamond rings and a necklace, estimated to be worth $80,000 to $100,000.

Unclaimed Remains Of Soldiers Now Get Full Burials

Jan. 7
Frank Eltman, Associated Press

Anderson Alston served as an Army master sergeant in World War II. Private Frederick Hunter was a soldier from 1968 to 1971. Myron Sanford Mabry was in the Navy from May 1960 to July 1971. All of them died recently in New York City with no one to claim their remains.

Tease photo for INDEPENDENT LENS: Men Who Swim

INDEPENDENT LENS: Men Who Swim

Jan. 7

This program is a humorous and poignant look at a group of middle-aged men who have found unlikely success as members of Sweden's all-male synchronized swimming team. What begins as a weekly escape from the daily grind of work and family responsibilities gradually evolves into a more serious commitment. Inspired by Esther Williams' techniques from the 1950s, these train engineers and meat buyers, archivists and teachers soon become passionate exponents of a sport generally associated with women.

CA Supreme Court Justice Moreno Stepping Down, Brown To Pick Replacement

Jan. 7
California Capitol Network

He’s been in office for less than a week, but already Gov. Jerry Brown has another major appointment to make -- California Supreme Court Justice, and his selection will be closely watched.

Budget Cuts Leave CA Schools In State Of Emergency

Jan. 7
Ida Lieszkovszky, California Capitol Network

California’s schools are in a state of fiscal emergency, according to Tom Torlakson the Superintendent of Public Instruction.

Chargers' Doctor Pays $2.2 Million To Former Patient

Jan. 7
City News Service

An arbitration panel this week awarded $2.2 million to a former patient of Chargers team doctor David Chao, adding to a long string of legal troubles for the San Diego physician.

Tease photo for RICK STEVES' EUROPE: Stockholm

RICK STEVES' EUROPE: Stockholm

Jan. 7

Sweden's capital, confident and self-assured, glitters with souvenirs from the day when it ruled as a superpower. From pondering gilded royal staterooms to sampling gourmet reindeer and sipping vodka in an ice bar, we experience the city's cultural highlights. Then we sail the archipelago for the prettiest island-hopping in northern Europe.

Chula Vista Civic Facilities' Hours Reduced

Jan. 7
City News Service

The city of Chula Vista will begin a reduced schedule of operating hours at civic facilities Friday, part of on-going budget cuts that saw the loss of 101 full-time jobs.

UC Leaders Reject Academics' Call For Higher Pensions

Jan. 7
By Hank Crook, Gloria Penner

Some of the University of California's highest-paid academic leaders want to increase pension benefits for those earning more than $245,000. UC President Mark Yudof rejects the contention that UC is required to increase the benefits. Why do academic leaders believe they deserve a pension boost in difficult financial times? And, what's next in this dispute?

Arnold Schwarzenegger Draws Criticism For Final Actions As Governor

Jan. 7
By Hank Crook, Gloria Penner

Does Arnold Schwarzenegger rank among California's worst governors? Before leaving office, Schwarzenegger made a number of controversial appointments to paid state commissions, and reduced the prison sentence of a former lawmaker's son. We discuss the reduction of Esteban Nunez's16-year prison sentence, and Schwarzenegger's legacy.

Governor Brown Thinking About Eliminating Redevelopment Agencies

Jan. 7
By Hank Crook, Gloria Penner

Governor Jerry Brown is considering eliminating local redevelopment agencies, like CCDC. Redevelopment funds are helping to pay for the new downtown library, and have been eyed for a new Chargers stadium and convention-center expansion. We discuss impacts in San Diego if Brown cuts redevelopment funding.

Tease photo for Jump In Conventions Seen As Harbinger Of Better Times

Jump In Conventions Seen As Harbinger Of Better Times

Jan. 7
By Kyla Calvert

Thirteen thousand attendees and exhibitors will descend on the city this weekend for the American Library Association Midwinter Meeting. They’re the first of more than 800,000 expected convention-goers in San Diego this year, the most since 2008.

Tease photo for Getting Around San Diego: Changes Ahead

Getting Around San Diego: Changes Ahead

Jan. 7
By Alison St John

San Diegans will see plenty of construction on the freeways in 2011, but there’s even more planning going on behind the scenes.

Tease photo for Hoax Revelation Won't Change Mother's Mind About Autism And Vaccines

Hoax Revelation Won't Change Mother's Mind About Autism And Vaccines

Jan. 7
By Joanne Faryon / inewsource

A local mom says a new report labeling the study linking autism and vaccination as a hoax, won’t change her belief that her son’s condition was caused by injections.

Pursuit of Green Energy Sources Expands Into Mexico

Pursuit of Green Energy Sources Expands Into Mexico

Jan. 7
By Ruxandra Guidi

The production of solar and wind energy is booming in Southern California and nearby border states. Utilities are so eager to get into the game that they're reaching into Mexico to meet the demand.