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Stories by KPBS News

Breaking News: County Officials Hold Press Conference (Raw Audio)

Listen to the San Diego County press conference for an update on this emergency situation.

Santa Ana Winds Blowing S.D. Wildfires Out of Control

(Updated 6:20 p.m. October 21) Erratic Santa Ana winds continue to push two wildfires out of control in rural eastern San Diego County. One civilian is reported dead at least 8 are injured, and four firefighters are in hospital with burn injuries.

Breaking News: Wildfires Blaze Across San Diego County

(Updated 4:50 p.m. October 22) There are two fires burning out of control in the rural areas of eastern San Diego County. We have reports of one fatality related to the fire.The fires and thick smoke are being pushed westward by dry Santa Ana Winds.

Source Says San Diego Labor Leader Butkiewicz to Step Down

The head of the San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council is leaving his post, an official with the organization confirmed today.

Tech Talk: Open Access Wireless Services

On Mondays we talk about news in the tech world with Brian Cooley, Editor-at-Large at CNET.com.

San Diego Gasoline Prices Resurge After Months of Decline

The price of gasoline surged back up this week, ending a stretch of 15 weeks of falling prices. The Utility Consumer's Action Network says the average price of a gallon of gas is $2.85.

California Lawmakers End Budget Standoff, Pass $145 Billion Plan

California lawmakers ended the nation's longest budget impasse Tuesday, agreeing to a $145 billion spending plan that eliminates the state's persistent deficit and addresses the myriad concerns of holdout Republicans.

ACLU Report: Growing Concern on Government Surveillance

The American Civil Liberties Union has a new report out that raises concerns about the government's ability to watch and record what citizens are doing.

San Diego Hospitals Sue County Over Prisoners' Medical Bills

A group of San Diego area hospitals are suing the county again. The dispute centers on medical bills run up last year by prisoners of the sheriff's department. The hospitals say the sheriff's department has to pay the bills of detainees who get treatment before they're booked in jail.

Suit Forces Walmart to Remit $4 Million in Unpaid Overtime Wages

Walmart will pay nearly $4 million in overtime wages to 50,000 workers throughout California. It's part of a settlement reached between Walmart and the California Labor Commission. The mega retailer says the underpayment was due to payroll processing errors.

UC President Announces Resignation Effective Next Summer

The president of the University of California system announced today he'll be stepping down next summer. Robert Dynes says he'll be leaving because of changes in his personal life.

Calif. Insurance Commissioner Gives Praise For Rate Amendments

California's Insurance Commissioner is praising car insurance companies that have changed rate structures nearly a year ahead of a state-imposed deadline. About 10 percent of the state's car insurance companies have changed their policies to base rates on drivers' records rather than their zip codes.

Chargers' Tomlinson Promoting Healthy Living to Fight Diseases

San Diego area hospitals are enlisting star power to bring attention to local health issues. Chargers runningback LaDainian Tomlinson will be promoting healthy living and disease prevention for the next five years. The record-setting football player says for him, the fight against disease is personal.

Forecaster Says East County Humidity Unusual But Not Unexpected

The high humidity and thunderstorms in the East County are unusual weather for San Diego, but not unexpected for this time of year.

Imperial County Tops List of Heat-Wave Deaths in July 2006

Imperial County suffered the most casualties in California during a scorching heat wave a year ago. That's according to a new study by the state Department of Public Health Services. The study looks at heat-related deaths statewide during a two-week period in July of 2006.

SDG&E Turns On High-Voltage Power Line

Electricity began flowing today through San Diego Gas & Electric's new high-voltage transmission line. Officials say the line will provide enough energy to power 500,000 homes and businesses.

Report: 'Mistakes Made' in Sunroad Project

An internal probe turned up no evidence of illegal behavior at City Hall involving construction of an office tower near San Diego's Montgomery Field. But the report faults staffers for their handling of the project.

DuPont Teaches Engineering to 4th Graders -- With Lifesavers

Fourth graders at a Southeast San Diego school got some hands-on engineering experience on Wednesday. Chemical company DuPont helped about a hundred youngsters at Walter Porter Elementary build and race cars made of lifesavers and straws.

Mayor Wants Higher Water Rates, Lower Sewer Rates

San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders is calling for a reduction in city sewer rates. The reduction is part of a settlement of a lawsuit filed by consumer advocates. They say the city overcharged residents and needs to make amends.

Tony Gwynn Preps For Hall of Fame Send-Off

Tony Gwynn is getting ready for his trip to Cooperstown. The eight-time batting champ will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame July 29th. He talked today about some of the festivities taking place at Petco Park this weekend.

Sharp Hospital Nursing Strike Averted

Nurses at Sharp hospitals in San Diego have averted a strike set for today. The union and hospital officials brokered a labor deal over the weekend.

Homeless Vets Get Free Meals, Guidance

Hundreds of homeless veterans enjoyed free meals, shelter and medical treatment today. The 20th annual Stand Down event helps veterans get off the street and apply for housing and jobs.

California AG: San Diego Deputy Was Justified to Kill Unarmed Man

California's attorney general has found a San Diego County sheriff's deputy was justified when he fatally shot a man two years ago. The decision is the final evaluation of five fatal officer-involved shootings in Vista in 2005. The victims were all Latino men and the shootings caused community outrage.

Debate Amplifies Over Bajagua Tijuana Sewage Treatment Project

The debate over sewage treatment in Mexico continues to heat up in Washington. The disagreement is between San Diego Democratic Congressman Bob Filner and members of the International Boundary and Water Commission.

Sheriff's Dept. Praised by Office it Paid to Review Police Shootings

The San Diego County Sheriff's Department received glowing praise today. The department paid the privately-run Office of Independent Review to look into 25 shootings involving deputies between 2003 to 2005. Three of the shootings took place in Vista within a five-day period.

Weather Service Says Wildfire Conditions Even Worse This Week

The National Weather Service says there's a high risk of wildfire in Southern California on Wednesday. They've issued a Red Flag Warning for the mountains and forests, meaning humidity has dropped below 10 percent in those areas.

Rebelling Inmates Try to Break Windows at Otay Mesa Facility

As many as 65 inmates were involved in a disturbance at an Otay Mesa jail early this morning.

Growing concerns over lack of migrant farm workers

California farmers say their fall harvests are beginning to accelerate, but their numbers of farm workers are not. Growers in some counties report financial losses due to the lack of migrant farm workers.

Overweight at risk for dying early

A large government study says baby boomers that are a little overweight run a greater risk of dying early. The study published in the New England Journal of Medicine involved more than a half million people.

2,500 Marine reservists called back

Marine Corp officials are calling back 2,500 reservists to meet the demands of war in Iraq and Afghanistan. The involuntary return is just the latest sign that American forces are under strain, and the military is having trouble recruiting.

New Miramar warplane would conflict with joint-use airport proposal

Marine Corps officials say a new warplane coming to the Miramar Air Station will mean civilian use of the airport won't be possible. The Joint Strike Fighter or F-35, would play a critical role in national defense. Miramar officials say the development comes as no surprise. But it could affect an advisory measure on the November ballot.

Escondido votes to draw up immigrant ordinance

The Escondido City Council voted last night to draw up an ordinance that would punish people who provide jobs and housing to illegal immigrants.

Arellano Felix arrives in San Diego

Accused drug kingpin Francisco Javier Arellano-Felix arrived on U.S. soil this morning in San Diego. He was immediately whisked away to a downtown federal detention center where he will be booked.

San Onofre reactor leaked radioactive water

Officials say a retired reactor at the San Onofre nuclear power plant has leaked several thousand gallons of radioactive water. But officials say the leak poses no threat to the public. They say water containing tritium has been leaking from the reactor. But officials don't know when the leak started or how long it's been going on.

Federal officials capture Mexican drug lord

Federal officials have arrested one of Mexico's top drug kingpins who was a leader of Tijuana's violent Arellano-Felix cartel. KPBS Reporter Amy Isackson has details.

San Diego's cost of living increases four percent

The cost of living in San Diego went up about four-percent in the past year. The U.S. Department of Labor says increases in gas prices, medical care and housing led the increase.

Camp Pendleton officer indicted over Iraqi civilian assaults

Military prosecutors have indicted a San Diego based Marine officer on suspicion of assaulting three Iraqi civilians during a combat deployment last spring.

City may prohibit smoking at Qualcomm Stadium

It's possible that smokers will not be able to light up anywhere within the walls of Qualcomm Stadium in the near future. The San Diego City Council tentatively approved an ordinance prohibiting smoking inside the home of the Chargers.

North County boil water order cancelled

City officials say its okay to drink tap water in northeastern San Diego once again. A boil-water order that was in effect this weekend was lifted yesterday.

Long-awaited Kroll report to be released tomorrow

A long overdue investigative report looking into San Diego's pension system debacle will be presented to the City Council tomorrow.

Camp Pendleton to open Wounded Warrior Center

Camp Pendleton will open the first West Coast barracks for Marines and sailors wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Millions of fish dying in Salton Sea

Some three million fish suffocated in the Salton Sea's largest tilapia die-off since 1999. The dead fish clogged a harbor driving away boaters and fouling the air in the Coachella Valley desert.

CA to study the effect of global warming on public health

California researchers have received a $4.5 million federal grant to track heat-related deaths and emergency room visits to study how global warming could affect public health.

More than 100 sailors test positive for TB

Navy officials say more than 100 sailors have tested positive for exposure to tuberculosis after their recent tour aboard the aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan.

Six former pension trustees to stand trial

Six former pension trustees will have to stand trial for allegedly violating the state's conflict-of-interest law. A judge yesterday ruled that preliminary evidence in the case was sufficient.

4.4 magnitude earthquake rattles San Francisco

A 4.4 magnitude earthquake shook the San Francisco Bay area last night. Authorities say it struck just after 8 p.m. about three miles west of Glen Ellen in Sonoma County.

Field Poll: Voters support sex offender proposition

A survey by the Field Poll shows that 76 percent of likely voters support Proposition 83. It would raise penalties for violent sex offenders barring them from living within 2,000 feet of a school or park.

Evidence reveals Pendleton Marines deliberately shot civilians

A Pentagon official says evidence collected on the deaths of 24 Iraqis in Haditha supports accusations that Camp Pendleton Marines deliberately shot the civilians.

Court ruling could jeopardize SDSU expansion

A court ruling against the California State University system could jeopardize future growth at San Diego State. The state Supreme Court yesterday ruled the CSU system must pay for roads, sewers and water pipes when it expands its Monterey Bay campus.