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Stories by Amita Sharma

Deadline Passes In Probe Of Secret San Onofre Deal

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Customers may now have little recourse for accountability for how they were handed a $3.3 billion bill for the San Onofre nuclear power plant’s shutdown after a radiation leak in 2012.

Harris Questioned For Representing Gov. Brown During San Onofre Probe

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San Diego consumer lawyer Mike Aguirre has asked Gov. Jerry Brown’s office for records and communications related to San Onofre. But Attorney General Kamala Harris has notified Aguirre she is representing Brown’s office in the lawyer's request for documents under the California Public Records Act.

Critics Unhappy With Kamala Harris' Approach To San Onofre Probe

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Some consumer activists worry that California Attorney General Kamala Harris’ Democratic Party loyalties are influencing her office's criminal investigation into the 2013 closure of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station.

Kamala Harris’ Career Choice Inspired By Civil-Rights Icons

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The California attorney general and U.S. Senate front-runner credits the civil-rights activism of Thurgood Marshall and Constance Baker Motley, as well as that of her Indian mother and Jamaican father, for propelling her into a law career.

US Senate Race Shaping Up As A Harris-Sanchez Match

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Polls show Democrats Kamala Harris and Loretta Sanchez are almost certain to face off in November in the race to replace U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer. The top two vote-getters in the June election move forward, regardless of their party affiliation.

Former YMCA Executive Says Problems Remain At Organization

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Details of an inquiry last year into the operation of the YMCA of San Diego County found no illegal conduct at the organization. But the exit of a key executive may indicate the YMCA’s troubles remain.

Chavez Exit Could Boost GOP Shot At Runoff In U.S. Senate Race

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One fewer Republican to compete against helps, but a political analyst says the party must rally around just one candidate in order to make it into the fall runoff.

New Judge In San Onofre Case Has Past Experience With San Diego Utility Issues

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The judge, who once allowed secret settlement talks and kept out evidence in a case over the 2007 wildfires, will likely hear arguments asking the California Public Utilities Commission to overturn the $4.7 billion San Onofre nuclear plant shutdown settlement.

Former Filner Chief Of Staff Writes Tell-All Book

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Lee Burdick's book, "Bob Filner's Monster: The Unraveling of an American Mayor and What We Can Learn From It," is an insider's account of the sexual harassment scandal that brought down San Diego's mayor.

Federal Authorities Do Little To Punish San Onofre Over Closure

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The Nuclear Regulatory Commission never fined San Onofre plant operator Southern California Edison for failing to disclose it knew in 2006 that the steam generators it installed could have potential flaws.

State Accountability Scarce Four Years After San Onofre Leak

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This month marks the fourth anniversary since the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station leaked radiation, leading to the plant's premature shutdown. So far, Southern California Edison has mostly escaped accountability for that incident despite revelations that the company knew the equipment was flawed before it was installed.

Judge Connected To San Onofre Investigation Retires

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Administrative Law Judge Melanie Darling stalled a probe into the closure of the nuclear power plant.

SDSU Official, Student Talk About Race Issues On Campus

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Amid recent college protests against racial discrimination, how would a complaint of racism or other types of bias like a verbal slight be handled at SDSU?

Navy Taking Public Input On Future Training In San Diego Waters

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The U.S. Navy is seeking a new permit to conduct training exercises off the San Diego coast, and is collecting concerns and comments from the public about potential ill effects on marine life.

San Diego Forum Examines Role Of Race In Medicine

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The San Diego-based Multicultural Health Foundation is presenting “Racism: Let the Cure Begin" Tuesday at the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation.

San Diego Scientists Hope To Raise Ocean Consciousness At UN Conference

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A team from Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego are in Paris attending the 21st United Nations Conference on Climate Change. They are there to educate conference delegates on the role the ocean plays in climate change.

Email Suggests Brown Took Edison's Side On San Onofre; Governor Denies It

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An email from a utility CEO suggests Gov. Jerry Brown was taking Southern California Edison's side while others sought a criminal probe of the utility. Brown's spokesman denies that happened.

San Diego County Food Pantries Struggle To Keep Up With Need

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It's the time of year when many charities ask people to open their hearts and their wallets to those less fortunate. Some of the most urgent appeals come from groups providing food.

Full Disclosure: What California Home Sellers Must Tell Buyers

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California has many disclosure codes on the books requiring home sellers to tell potential buyers everything from whether a person died in the home to an unruly neighbor.

University Of San Diego Forum Examines Global Refugee Crisis

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The situation in Syria and Europe is considered the biggest refugee crisis since World War II. A public forum asks whether the world should be more prepared for the population upheavals that come with war.

Drought Taking Heavy Toll On San Diego Trees

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California has lost an astounding number of trees to the ongoing drought. Among them, many of San Diego's beloved Torrey pines.

San Diego Writer Shares Her Experience With Depression

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This week in her long-running San Diego Reader column, Diary of a Diva, Barbarella Fokos decided to write about something she never has before. She described what it's like for her to live with depression.

Edison Never Told Federal Regulators Of San Onofre Equipment Design Flaw

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Records show Southern California Edison knew in 2005 about a flaw in the San Onofre nuclear power plant's new steam generator design but omitted that detail in a meeting with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Critics say the omission deserves legal scrutiny.

San Diego Scientists Turn Ocean Pink To Study Pollution

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The study is part of a binational effort to examine how pollution travels across the U.S.-Mexico border.

YMCA Corporate Board Refuses To Release Investigation Results To Branch Leaders

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A June resolution shows, however, that board members intended to turn over inquiry findings "to any branch board member who wishes to receive a copy."

Proposal To Ban Styrofoam Food Containers In Encinitas Heats Up

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The City of Encinitas has extended the public comment period on a proposal to restaurants and other businesses from using styrofoam containers for take-out food and drinks.

Inventors Show Off Their Wares At Maker Faire San Diego

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The inaugural Maker Faire gets underway this weekend in Balboa Park. San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer has named it the Fall Centennial Event of 2015.

YMCA Investigation Finds No Evidence Of Wrongdoing, Says Board Chairman

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The YMCA is mum on whether the findings will be revealed.

Details Emerge In Investigation Of YMCA Of San Diego County Management

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The YMCA of San Diego County is facing turmoil at the top. KPBS previously reported that the YMCA’s corporate board had hired a consultant to oversee an investigation into mismanagement allegations. Here are edited excerpts from an interview with KPBS Investigative reporter Amita Sharma.

Federal 'Good Neighbors' Meeting Scrutinizes Climate Change Impact On San Diego Border

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The Good Neighbor Environmental Board collected input from local and state agencies and other stakeholders this week, for its annual report to the President.

Roundtable: The Marne Foster Mess, Women Marines, New CPUC Head, Nuclear Waste

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The San Diego Unified School Board President is in some hot water. Women Marines fighting for combat-readiness. The California Public Utilities Commission has a new chair, if that makes a difference. San Diego County Supervisors want nuclear waste out of San Onofre — now.

San Diego Group Says U.S. Needs To Do More To Help Syrian Refugees

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The White House announced the United States will now take 10,000 Syrian refugees. But the Syrian American Council of San Diego calls that a "drop in an ocean."

San Diego Chargers Gear Up For Season Opener As Team Eyes Los Angeles Move

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The team and city of San Diego failed to meet their Friday deadline for a stadium agreement. "The Chargers are unwilling to go along with the city's ill-conceived strategies," Chargers special counsel Mark Fabiani told the Associated Press.

Rep. Susan Davis Discusses Iran Nuclear Deal

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One of the issues up for debate when Congress returns from its August recess on Tuesday will be the U.S. nuclear deal with Iran.

PUC Continues To Flout Legislator's Demand For Documents On San Onofre Pact

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Despite repeated demands over the last six months for documents related to how the San Onofre settlement agreement was reached, regulators have steadfastly refused to turn them over to a state lawmaker.

Historic Jewish Artifacts Donation Helps Support Diversity At SDSU

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A San Diego man donated his Torah collection to the university, which turned out to be worth nearly $500,000.

San Diego YMCA Board Authorizes Probe Into Mismanagement Allegations Against CEO

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The investigation comes several months after two Encinitas board members were ousted following their complaints to the corporate board about San Diego County YMCA President and Chief Executive Officer Baron Herdelin-Doherty.

San Diego Experts Talk Violence In The Workplace

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The deadly shooting of two journalists in Virginia by a disgruntled former coworker highlights that fact that homicide is currently the fourth leading cause of death at work, according to OSHA.

San Diegans Reflect On 10-Year Anniversary Of Hurricane Katrina

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The 10-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina brings up painful memories for some San Diegans. We hear from a woman who relocated after losing everything to the storm and how San Diegans helped out in the aftermath.

Records Challenge Edison's $7.6B Demand Of Mitsubishi Over San Onofre Equipment

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Documents indicate Southern California Edison's arbitration claim against Mitsubishi may not be clear-cut.

Counting Customer Costs For San Onofre Closure: $10.4 Billion

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The $3.3 billion ratepayer tab contained within the controversial settlement over the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station is but a fraction of the decades-long bill customers are left to cover because of the shutdown.

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Lightsabers, Han Solo Dazzle Comic-Con San Diego Fans

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The parties are over, the celebrities have cleared out, and the superheroes have packed up their capes. Another Comic-Con has come to a close.

San Diego Stand Down Prepares To Help Hundreds of Homeless Veterans

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Veterans Village of San Diego is hosting Stand Down for the 28th year beginning on Friday at the San Diego High School campus.

More Emails Surface On Secret Meetings Over San Onofre Settlement

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New information reveals that upon his return from a secret meeting with a Southern California Edison executive in Poland, former California Public Utilities Commissioner Michael Peevey met with fellow Commissioner Mike Florio.

Consumer Group Withdraws Support For San Onofre Settlement

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A San Francisco-based consumer group called on the California Public Utilities Commission to withdraw a $4.7 billion settlement that stuck ratepayers with the majority of the costs to shut down San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station.

Allegations May Leave Supervisor Dave Roberts Politically Vulnerable

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With San Diego County Supervisor Dave Roberts engulfed in a scandal, his political survival may rest on a criminal inquiry and public perception.

San Diegans Reflect On The End Of World War II

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This year marks the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II. On this Memorial Day, we take a look back at the war that dramatically changed the country and San Diego.

San Diego County's Unemployment Rate Dips To Nearly 8-Year Low

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San Diego County's unemployment rate dropped to 4.8 percent — the lowest rate the region has seen in almost a decade.

San Diego's Lawsuit Over Leaky Fuel Tanks Revived

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The city of San Diego's $300 million lawsuit against the owner of a leaky fuel tank farm in Mission Valley was revived by an appellate court, according to the City Attorney's Office.

Two Encinitas YMCA Board Members Forced Out Over Youth Membership Dispute

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Board members Lizbeth Ecke and Bob Ayers say they were asked to resign from the board at the Ecke YMCA after objecting to a decision to eliminate discounted youth memberships at all of San Diego County's 12 YMCAs.

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