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North River Farms Goes Back To The Drawing Board And More Local News

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In today’s San Diego News Matters podcast, a proposal to build an agri-community with hundreds of new homes in the semi-rural farmland is back on the drawing board. And several tributes are underway for Memorial Day, plus learn all about a new sea dragon exhibit at Birch Aquarium.

Show transcript

Speaker 1: 00:00 Good morning. It's May 27th I'm Deb Welsh and your listening to San Diego News matters. The developer of a unique project to build new housing and Oceanside's agricultural district is back to the drawing board. The developer hopes to create what they call it, an Agora community, but KPBS North County reporter Elyssa Saint John says the city council has postpone a vote indefinitely. North River farms would add 650 homes on 177 acres in Morro hills, an area of rolling fields and east ocean side. The developer integral communities says it would preserve over 70 acres of agricultural land and incorporate small farms and sustainable technology like solar and gray water. But Ocean side of the Planning Commission rejected the plan twice. And Chair Kyle Crow Hill says it would be better to put the housing in an area that's already urbanized.

Speaker 2: 00:49 We based the housing crisis and we need to make sure that we can allow families to be able to live here in ocean side, but we also need to be based at the climate crisis that we have coming in. That means that we need to grow smart.

Speaker 1: 01:01 Oceanside city council voted last week to postpone a vote into rural communities, hopes to modify its plan and bring it back to the council within a year, but in the same location. Alison Saint John Kpbs News see world opened its newest attraction this past weekend. KPBS reporter John Carroll says the parks new rides or helping to turn record low attendance into record highs.

Speaker 3: 01:23 The ribbon cutting for sea world's latest attraction title twister marks more than just the addition of a new ride. The park has turned around its fortunes from a few years ago. Seaworld was already struggling when the documentary blackfish premiered in 2013 the movie pushed attendance numbers even further down, but San Diego State Marketing Professor George Belch says park management addressed the bad news in a number of ways.

Speaker 4: 01:48 Yeah, they stopped breeding the orchids in captivity. They got rid of the Shama shows. They made it a more environmentally friendly and conscious place to come because they had a campaign. See Roll cares. They showed the great things they do with animal rescue and marine conservation.

Speaker 3: 02:05 Another ride called Maaco is slated to open next year. John Carroll Kpbs News,

Speaker 1: 02:12 the San Diego nonprofit Wesley House is taking on the problem of student homelessness. KPBS reporter Malena Spitzer tells us about his task of providing affordable housing to the cities that vulnerable student population.

Speaker 5: 02:26 These are all my little projects.

Speaker 6: 02:30 Derek Patterson and art student at Sdsu shows me around his one bedroom apartment full of artwork. Derek says he's grateful to live at Wesley House after having experienced homelessness earlier in his life.

Speaker 5: 02:42 Having my own place is like a huge thing for me. It's a because it was embarrassing like having to ask people to stay over and stuff like that.

Speaker 6: 02:53 The Wesley House is located on the edge of the SDSU campus and it has room for 34 students. Derek says being homeless was probably the worst time in his life. He had to couch surf, experienced hunger, then things got worse. Derek committed armed robbery and ended up in prison. Wesley House director of Development, Nicole Mark Hal says there are currently more than 3000 unsheltered students at San Diego State University and

Speaker 7: 03:17 the situation within this community college system is about double that. So about 10% of students in the CSU and UC system experience homelessness and approximately 20% of students in the community colleges throughout California. Experience homelessness.

Speaker 6: 03:36 Wesley House serves students from other vulnerable populations including former foster youth and formerly incarcerated students like Derek, Malena Spitzer, KPBS news.

Speaker 1: 03:46 Tomorrow we'll meet a resident of Wesley House who was the first of his family to go to college. Now he wants to put his parents through school. La Jolla is now home to one of the largest sea dragon habitats in the world. KPBS reporter Lynn Walsh visited Birch aquariums. Newest permanent exhibit which could become an important breeding site

Speaker 6: 04:07 floating inside more than 5,000 gallons of water are two different species of sea dragons, leafy and weedy. They're surrounded by coral and swing. Seaweed meant to remind them of their natural habitat. In southern Australia, the leafy sea dragons are yellow, greenish in color, and with all of their appendages are easily mistaken as floating seaweed. No other aquarium has successfully bred them. Leslie Matsushita K associate curator at Birch says that could change.

Speaker 8: 04:34 And our new exhibit, the leafy sea dragons have been courting actively and they do this little twirling dance where they circle around each other and they do it quite often, especially, uh, around sunrise and sunset

Speaker 6: 04:49 Matsu she cases breeding leafy sea dragons is a primary goal of the new exhibit. She says the small range in which they live makes them vulnerable to environmental changes. Linda Walsh, KPBS news

Speaker 1: 05:01 did California Senator Kamala Harris reversers dance this week on who should investigate police shootings, capitol public radio's politifact reporter Chris Nichols examined whether and how much the Democratic presidential candidates stance has changed.

Speaker 9: 05:16 In an interview Monday on MSNBC, Harris was asked by host, Ari, Melbourne, where she currently stand.

Speaker 10: 05:23 What's the best way to deal with police shootings and alleged police brutality? Uh, as you know, in the wake of many of these incidents, uh, the view is by some that the independent probes are better to not let the DA in masquerade the cops they work with daily. I have you changed your mind about that or what is the best approach? I believe the best approach is to have independent investigations. There's no question.

Speaker 9: 05:45 We found this represents a major shift as the state's Attorney General Harris repeatedly said she favored local prosecutors keeping their authority to investigate police shootings. She also not support a bill at the Capitol that would've required her office to appoint a special prosecutor. For those cases, we rated Harris's new position as a full flop on politifacts flip oh meter. That's the biggest change there is on this meter, which doesn't make a judgment on the politician, but instead traces how their position has changed through time. Chris Nichols, cap radio news

Speaker 1: 06:21 father's day is coming up next month and the California report is encouraging listeners to tell them something about their fathers specifically what are the sounds that remind them of dad. They produced the following story, which is a series of stories about the sounds the cal report staff say, reminds them of their fathers. They begin with a story from Susie Ratko.

Speaker 8: 06:54 So my dad was a tailor. He built himself his own tool shed and even made my sister and me pink playhouse in our backyard. So the sound of the hammer always reminds me of him. And with father's day coming up on June 16th we want to know what's sound reminds you of your dad or your grandfather. Is it a baseball hitting a glove? Maybe it's a sizzling barbecue or his favorite song. I'm Olivia Allen Price and the sound that reminds me the most of my dad is the sound of a cocktail being made. You know the sound of the ice kind of rattling around in a cocktail shaker and it's because he makes himself a Martini just about every night of the week. So I grew up just hearing that sound. It was kind of the sign that the workday was over and it was time to kick back and relax.

Speaker 6: 07:51 I am Victoria Malayan and the sound that reminds me of my father is the sound of an old typewriter. He was a professor and a poet and he would spend hours clacking away on that old machine with his two index fingers, translating some obscure Latin poet into Spanish. And often after dinner I'd be up late doing homework and he'd be typing away at his desk and it felt so comforting to have him there and I really miss him and I missed that sound.

Speaker 8: 08:24 My name is Eric could cruise Guevara at the sound that reminds me of my grandpa is the sound of Boston Nova. My grandpa's a jazz musician. He plays the bass and I remember growing up with him as a kid. I used to wake up to the sound of him lasting Boston Nova and jazz on his record player. My name is Scott Schafer and the sound that reminds me of my father is coins Jingling in his pockets.

Speaker 11: 08:56 My father was nicknamed beaver. Everybody called him beaver. He was a small businessman and at one time he owned a lot of vending machines, like a cigarette machines, jukeboxes, snack machines. Pinball machines in bowling alleys and bars, and he would empty the coins out of, of those machines. And most of the coins would go into a bag, uh, to take to the bank. But he always had coins in his pocket. And if he was worried about something, which he often was a, he would take some of those coins and take them out of his pocket and just kind of like rubbed some quarters together. That's another sound that reminds me of him.

Speaker 8: 09:37 I'm Rachel Myro and the sound that reminds me of my dad is the music he wrote for the opening montage of the 1973 classic movie, Soylent Green. Other people may think at Charlton Heston or urban dystopia when they see that scene, but I hear that distinctive blend of symphonic grandeur and folksy Americana. And I think dad, every time, aw man, I'm tearing up now.

Speaker 1: 10:17 If you want to share a similar story about the sounds of your dad, call the California report at 415-EIGHT-306TY-58Y and leave a message. You may hear the commercials or see the billboards. They talk about cannabis and all its health benefits, but are those claims true? Professor John Errors is a Uc San Diego scientist who wrote a recent column about that in the Journal of the American Medical Association. He spoke to midday edition host jade Hindman about the regulation of marijuana marketing.

Speaker 12: 10:50 Now in your column you highlight a brand called med men. Talk to me about that brand and the way they are reaching large audiences to market marijuana.

Speaker 13: 11:00 Mid, mid is one of the first national marijuana brands, meaning that they have retail locations in multiple states and they're actually buying advertising that targets all 50 states regardless of whether you can purchase recreational marijuana or not.

Speaker 12: 11:14 And you say this company and many others like it make health claims but no health warnings about marijuana. What are some of the health claims being made?

Speaker 13: 11:23 Marijuana is being marketed as a cure all even though restrictions in California and both nationally put prohibitions on using health claims to market recreational marijuana. That is to say these claims are reckless because there is no substantial evidence showing that marijuana has any therapeutic benefit. For example, the food and Drug Administration who oversees all healthcare delivery in the nation has not approved marijuana for any treatment.

Speaker 12: 11:51 Hmm. And, and give me some examples because I know I've read in some places that marijuana can be used to treat opioid addiction, even a, is that an outrageous claim?

Speaker 13: 12:02 And now they're more like it? Yeah, exactly. That specific claim is actually been proven false on multiple occasions, including in the Journal of American Medical Association. But for example, they'll claim that marijuana can be used to treat anxiety, pain, addiction withdrawals, uh, menstrual problems, autism, you name. It really has been marketed and targeted for all conditions. And why? Because the reality is, is they're selling a recreational drug, therefore their marketplaces, everyone. So how do you get everyone to use it? One way is you can make health claims that target almost every condition, for example, even acne, a condition that disproportionately affects things. So in that case, you can get user starting even earlier.

Speaker 12: 12:48 That leads me into my next question. Uh, how do you feel these, these marketing strategies are targeting youth

Speaker 13: 12:55 marketing strategies used by marijuana today are simply copying that big tobacco pipe book using the greatest hits from the Nazim 50s all the way through the 1990s and that is first by using health claims doctors endorsing their favorite marijuana brand or favorite marijuana product. And secondly, targeting tings. Why most people who use marijuana start early. So let's get them addicted to our brand early. Therefore, companies like med men are creating products and selling products to teens that focus on brand loyalty such as a madman varsity jacket that they brand as their med men high varsity jacket or sailing gingerbread house kit. So you can have a fun family holiday where you and the kids can make a marijuana laced gingerbread house. And we see it over and over again just this week one marijuana retailer ever released to how to God, how to tell your parents you're using weed.

Speaker 13: 13:56 It's absurd. If any other maker was doing the same type of reckless marketing, there would be almost immediately put out of business due to regulations and also public pushback. Just imagine substitute in the word jewel like electronic cigarettes or bode wiser or more burl for marijuana and these advertisements, it simply wouldn't stand. So the food and Drug Administration and other federal actors need to engage in that. Now, they had developed consistent health warning messages to include on all marijuana products to include an all marijuana advertising that tells the straight truth. I'm not pro or anti marijuana in any sense. I'm pro science and that's why we want a federal agency that's involved in regulatory science to be leading this agenda.

Speaker 12: 14:40 I've been speaking with Professor John A or is a scientist with UC San Diego Professor, eight years. Thank you so much for joining us. Thank you. Thanks for listening to San Diego News matters. Can't more KPBS podcasts at k pbs.org/podcasts.

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San Diego News Matters

KPBS' daily news podcast covering local politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings so you can listen on your morning commute.