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Graduation Day: Coronavirus Evacuees are Released from Quarantine And Other Local News

 February 19, 2020 at 3:00 AM PST

Speaker 1: 00:00 It's Wednesday, February 19th. I'm Deb Welsh. And you're listening to San Diego news matters from KPBS coming up. Oh, happy day. Corona virus evacuees are released from quarantine and in part one of an I news source investigation, a former Navy seal turns to a UC San Diego doctor and his experimental brain treatments for help with PTSD. I was under the belief that there were no side effects that more coming up right after the break. Speaker 2: 00:36 [inaudible] Speaker 1: 00:37 160 people left MCA as Miramar Tuesday after being quarantined there two weeks for the coronavirus. They were evacuated from China where the virus is widespread. KPBS reporter Matt Hoffman was there as the evacuees arrived at the airport. Speaker 3: 00:53 Well, our quarantine ended earlier today. Um, so we're just trying to go back home. Lance Peterson and his wife got off the bus quickly, eager to catch their flight home to Nebraska. Uh, very relieved. It's been a long, long process. So people I spoke with, like Juliet Jew said the quarantine on base wasn't so bad. Speaker 4: 01:10 The current is actually, I think, uh, to me, uh, I don't feel that hard. CDC arrange everything very good. They've been doing a great job other than boring. There's nothing I can complain. Speaker 3: 01:23 Lance Peterson is a little worried about how his Chinese wife will be treated once they get home. Those leaving the base has been medically cleared and the CDC says they pose no risk to the public. Another 60 or so people are scheduled to leave the base on Thursday, not Hoffman KPBS news. Speaker 1: 01:39 Two people from the base have tested positive for the virus and are at local hospitals. San Diego has started enforcing a ban on short term rentals for new granny flats. After an eye. New source analysis found clear violations. I knew source investigative reporter Cody Delaney has more. Speaker 5: 01:57 The city council in 2017 made it easier and cheaper to build granny flats. The goal, more affordable housing in return. The units weren't supposed to be rented for less than 30 days, but I knew source found the city never had a plan to enforce that. Last month I knew source cross reference to city databases and identified several violations and now the city is doing that same kind of analysis in a statement. Mayor, Kevin Faulconer said code enforcement will open investigations while two other departments work to enforce the law moving forward. It's worth noting, the city attorney has said all short term rentals are illegal in San Diego, but that law isn't enforced as anyone who looks up San Diego and Airbnb can tell you for KPBS, I'm I news source investigative reporter Cody Delaney. Speaker 1: 02:44 I knew source is an independently funded nonprofit partner of KPBS, a new mixed use project in Santa. See DRO includes affordable housing and a space for immigration and community services. KPBS reporter Priya Schrader says it opened Tuesday. Casa familiar AR, a nonprofit serving residents of South San Diego unveiled the living rooms at the border project. The 13,000 square foot, $10 million project features 10 units of affordable housing. Approximately 30 residents moved into the spaces on February 1st Lisa quest, us president of Casa familiar says the project included the restoration of the our lady of Mount Carmel church, which was built in 1927 Speaker 4: 03:29 on its other side of the church are accessory buildings or spaces where we'll have financial education offices. We'll have an expansion of our immigration services and we'll have spaces for, for artists to rent studio space. Speaker 1: 03:43 The project was funded by tax credits allocated by civic San Diego and donations pre assure either K PBS news. The San Diego metropolitan transit service has plans to expand bus and rail service with a half cent sales tax measure slated for the November ballot, but first they want to hear from the public KPB SSLI Hickson explains MTS wants to test the waters so to speak by way of three live online public forums. The webinars are scheduled for this morning at 7:00 AM Thursday at 9:30 AM and then in Spanish next Tuesday, February 25th at 5:30 PM MTS officials say participants will be able to ask questions and even partake in interactive polling to influence the final design of the ballot proposal. To take part, you have to slash webinar the MTS says the tax if approved by voters, would improve transit service by bringing in $24 billion over 50 years. Sally Hickson KPBS news. A new state law allows voters to register up until election day, even if they missed yesterday's deadline. But KPBS reporter Taryn Minto says they'll face some extra steps. San Diego is who won a vote after the February 18th registration deadline will be required to complete additional paperwork and it'll take longer for election workers to verify their eligibility. San Diego County register of voters, Michael WGU says those voters will have to register conditionally and use a provisional ballot, Speaker 6: 05:17 which means that that belt will be segregated it into an envelope and we will verify it after the election to be able to count it. Speaker 1: 05:24 This also applies to registered San Diego, ones who want to vote for a presidential candidate that is a member of a different political party, such as a registered nonpartisan voter who wants to cast a ballot in the Republican or democratic presidential races. The County will open temporary sites around the region later this month to help register late voters and avoid long lines on election day. Taryn mento KPBS news for all of KPBS his election coverage, including our voter guide. Go to California's health insurance exchange saw a spike in enrollment this season. It may be tied to a new state requirement that everyone carry insurance or face a penalty. CAPP radio, Sammy Kay Ola has more on the covered California numbers and a deadline extension for signups. Speaker 7: 06:11 If you've been putting off getting health insurance covered, California is giving people until April 30th to enroll in a plan, but you must sign up before the end of March to escape the penalty. If you sign up an April, you'll pay a fine on your 2021 taxes covered. California saw a 41% increase in signups since last enrollment season. Executive director Peter Lee says that was the goal, Speaker 8: 06:34 the penalties on the books, but no one wants the money. We want that to be the economic nudge to get people to get coverage. Speaker 7: 06:41 Governor Gavin Newsome did originally pitched the penalty as a revenue raiser that would help support new subsidies for people who struggle to afford insurance. In the meantime, the state is already providing that aid covered. California has put millions into advertising the penalty, but still more than half of uninsured residents don't know about it. According to a December survey in Sacramento, I'm Sammy Kayla Speaker 1: 07:03 rewired is a three part series from I knew source investigative reporters, Jill Castellano and Brad Racino. It showcases a UCS D doctor who developed an experimental brain treatment and his Navy seal patient who had a psychotic break after receiving it. Here's Brad with part one. Speaker 9: 07:21 My name is Jonathan Steven Surmont. First of all, want to say that I truly believe that I am, uh, lucky to be alive. To share the story with you. Speaker 10: 07:33 John Surmont is a former Navy seal who suffered from PTSD after tours in Afghanistan and Asia. He struggled with cold sweats and anger, but he channeled his energy into running a drone surveillance company until 2013. That's when a tractor trailer ran a red light and Chula Vista and sent Surmont through his passenger side window after the accident. He said, should I stuttered? Speaker 9: 07:56 Um, I slurred my speech. I had a difficulty interacting with human beings. I felt like I was just Speaker 10: 08:02 a grown child. The crash added a brain injury and chronic pain to his PTSD. The next two years were a mess. His company collapsed. He divorced and watched his three children move with their mom to Florida. He battled anxiety, depression, and chronic pain and no treatment was helping. Then the nonprofit Navy seal foundation offered a lifeline. They bent over backwards for me and one of its board members presented Surmont with an idea. Speaker 9: 08:29 One of them contacted me and said, Hey, we've been thinking about you thinking about how to help you. We've come to find out about this experimental brain treatment that may actually help you. It may not, we don't know, but it might be worth a shot. Speaker 10: 08:45 The center Tim us, Dr. Kevin Murphy is explaining how standard T M S or transcranial magnetic stimulation works. Murphy is a former vice chair at UC San Diego's department of radiation medicine. Though he spent his career in oncology today, he sees himself as a pioneer in the field of TMS. I'm a, I'm on the bleeding edge of this. TMS is a relatively new medical treatment that sends electromagnetic pulses into the brain. It's FDA approved to treat depression, OCD and migraines, but Murphy modifies TMS to treat a range of conditions from autism to a bad golf swing. Speaker 11: 09:24 I would say on a stage right now in front of the entire academic community and say what we're doing is better. Speaker 10: 09:29 Murphy has no research or published data backing up his treatment but he says it works for 90% of patients stepping over the line and a Wexler is an assistant ethics professor at the university of Pennsylvania. She reviewed Murphy's website and was concerned the doctor was marketing his technique to potential patients as being better than other available treatments. Speaker 1: 09:51 That I think is a very clear misleading claim, especially given that he, he's not posting any studies. Speaker 10: 09:58 Murphy stumbled across TMS when he caught a late night TV special in 2013 he thought it may work on his son's violent autism and made an appointment. Speaker 11: 10:08 I had to hold them or them. I squeeze him and hold him. Speaker 10: 10:11 Murphy said the treatments transformed his son into a different person. He soon began treating patients using his own version of TMS. Not long after Surmont walked into Murphy's practice, the veteran was instantly enamored with the doctor. He had, uh, very quickly became a hero to me. Murphy also a Navy vet, supervised Surmont sprain treatments over the next two years. During that time, Surmont said the doctor was tinkering with the TMS equipment to try to perfect his own version of TMS. From my perspective, you know, this guy's like a team guy. He's going to be aggressive and he's going to go do it right. And, and I remember like, I'm a Guinea pig, Dr. Murphy, I trust you. Let's go do this, you know, kind of thing. And be careful what you wish for is what I will say for KPBS. I'm a news source investigative reporter Brad Racino. Speaker 1: 11:01 Tomorrow I knew source travels to Los Angeles with John Surmont to revisit his psychotic break from two years ago. Speaker 10: 11:09 And then I started to kind of [inaudible] Speaker 11: 11:10 wonder, wait a minute, did the treatment, Speaker 1: 11:13 this caused this? What's happening? I knew source is an independent nonprofit partner of KPBS. Even before the latest hostilities in the middle East. The army was trying some new methods to try to recruit more soldiers. A new marketing campaign called watch your warrior launched in November. It's short on crawling in the mud and long on high tech. Dan boys' reports for the American home front project Speaker 10: 11:39 recruiting company commander Josh Trancle has been touring brand new recruits around Fort Carson army base in Colorado Springs. They stopped by a shooting simulator, peaked inside military vehicles. Now Trancle announces it's lunchtime, Speaker 12: 11:54 enjoying a wonderful gourmet MRE that's a meal ready to eat. I need a water of soldiers handout. The Brown plastic packages at random recruit crystal Townsend sitting cross legged on the grass. She's peering into her MRA sack. She got a vegetable crumble towns into 35 on the older end for a recruit. Speaker 13: 12:13 When I was younger, when I was 1819 I did want to join, but I wasn't really competent in myself. I didn't know anybody in the military and I wasn't really sure I could do it. Speaker 12: 12:21 She ended up in law enforcement, a deputy sheriff stable job of professional career still as she got older and closer to the maximum age for enlistment. Speaker 13: 12:30 Looking back and having those regrets, it was just eating at me and I finally say, you know what? I'm going to go for it. Speaker 12: 12:35 Other recruits are just out of high school looking for that classic army experience as a gunner or an infantry man. I speak with one woman looking to go into communications. Another man is aiming to jumpstart his career as a firefighter. The range of ambitions these recruits have is exactly how the army is hoping to sell itself to the next generation of service members. The new army marketing campaign is called what's your warrior? And the first ad looks more like a trailer for an effects Laden superhero movie than a traditional recruitment pitch. Helicopters flying through mountain passes, a woman at a computer terminal communicates with a satellite overhead. A scientist is hard at work, splitting microscopic cells. There's this idea amongst lots of youth and perhaps Speaker 14: 13:20 it's even parents that there's only one way to serve and that's in a combat role. Speaker 12: 13:25 Brigadier general Alex Fink is the chief of army enterprise marketing. He's behind, what's your warrior think says military marketing that focuses on the glory of battle, just isn't working like in the past, especially as fewer and fewer Americans have family, military legacies to live up to. Speaker 14: 13:42 This is really more about surprising our audience about what you can do in the army. Speaker 12: 13:46 So the emphasis in what's your warrior is on showing the variety of career fields and the real world benefits of service. The army says the initial figures for this campaign have been pretty good. What's your warrior debuted in November and Brigadier general thinks says the number of people filling out reply forms on go has jumped 35% over last year. But that's just the first step. Speaker 14: 14:10 It's great and find a dandy to fill out a business reply card online. But how does that translate into actually getting folks to make a commitment? So we'll see. Speaker 12: 14:20 You guys want to fire again and that's where the individual relationship between recruit and recruiter comes in. Colorado Springs company commander Josh Trancle says, his recruiters are using the new, what's your warrior campaign to start the conversation. That's where the art of it is. They really need to know how to take that message and give it to the students coming out of school these days and make sure that they know the opportunities that are available to them. For new recruit crystal Townsend eating her vegetable crumble on that Fort Carson tour. The logical path would be to move her job as a Sheriff's deputy to military police. Instead, she's looking at something completely different. Speaker 13: 14:57 My number one pick is military intelligence. I would figure it'd be a waste of opportunity to not go into something else. Challenged myself by learning a completely new field. Speaker 12: 15:08 She says the diversity of career options led her to choosing the army over another military branch. If what's your warrior works, a lot more people will be taking a look at those options too. In Colorado Springs, I'm Dan boys. Speaker 1: 15:21 This story was produced by the American Homefront project, a public media collaboration that reports on American military life and veterans funding comes from the corporation for public broadcasting. Speaker 13: 15:41 Thanks for listening to San Diego news matters. 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The first group of people flown to Miramar air station from Wuhan, China are told they can now go home. Plus, new affordable housing opens in San Ysidro and the MTS transit agency holds online forums about plans to expand bus and trolley services.