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Week in Review: Elderly Atheists And Scrapping A Transportation Plan

A transportation plan that outlined new freeway lanes, public transportation and bike projects in San Diego was sent back to the drawing board this week. A San Diego Superior Court judge rejected SANDAG’s 40-year $200 billion plan because its environmental impact report was not up to snuff.

Plaintiffs claimed SANDAG's Regional Transportation Plan would continue the region's dependence on cars and make no progress in the battle against global warming.
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Above: Plaintiffs claimed SANDAG's Regional Transportation Plan would continue the region's dependence on cars and make no progress in the battle against global warming.

The judge ruled that the plan does not reduce future emissions enough to comply with an executive order enacted four years ago. That law mandates reducing greenhouse emissions by 80 percent below 1990 levels by the year 2050.

Erin Chalmers, an attorney who represented some of the plaintiffs in the suit, told KPBS that SANDAG’s plan “kicked the can down the road and said, well, we'll do more later.”

Chalmers and a plaintiff in the suit, a member of the board of directors for the Cleveland National Forest Foundation, explained why they thought the plan was rejected and what its next steps could be.

Other Stories this Week

There has been a lot of online buzz over our story about a group of elderly residents of La Costa Glen in Carlsbad who formed a group called Atheists Anonymous. The group’s leader is quite a character, and she says other members of the retirement home have called her a Jew lover, a sinner and the anti-Christ.

Brigit Clarke-Smith, the leader of Atheists Anonymous at La Costa Glen in Carlsbad.

Check the story for her version of the song “Jesus Loves Me, This I Know” and for the feisty comments section. You know when a commenter uses the word “poppycock” that the debate is getting heated.

This week, Bob Filner officially became the first Democratic mayor of San Diego in decades. And although the City Council is also majority-Democrat, with a new Democratic president, we report that Filner still may not get everything he wants.

For example, his proposal to take money from a city reserve fund and put it toward public safety needs was met with resistance by newly-elected Council President Todd Gloria.

A San Diego County water official shared with KPBS some possible ways to clean up the smell at La Jolla Cove without a permit. He said spraying anything on the rocks falls under federal and state regulations because that spray will go into the ocean.

But, he said, if the “material” (by which he means poop) is scooped up or swept up on shore instead of into the ocean, that might not require a permit. So get out the brooms and trash bags.

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