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Biden in San Diego

 November 4, 2022 at 5:00 AM PDT

Good Morning, I’m Debbie Cruz….it’s Friday, November 4th.

A Chula Vista City Attorney candidate who died in September is still on the ballot. More on that next. But first... let’s do the headlines….

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Governor Gavin Newsom said the plans submitted by cities and counties for a billion dollars in funding to address homelessness are not enough.

Newsom said the plans submitted would reduce homelessness by 2-percent by 20-24.

He said that’s not good enough and plans to meet with local leaders later this month to coordinate a better approach.

Local governments have called for a more comprehensive statewide homelessness plan and many are reluctant to spend money on new services and shelters without ongoing funding.

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Research from UC San Diego has shown that COVID can damage brain cell synapses.

Synapses are the connections that brain cells use to communicate with each other.

The senior author of the study said the research helps explain some of the neurological symptoms people with long COVID may experience.

The study also showed that the antiviral drug sofosbuvir might be able to restore the neurological impairments.

Researchers said further studies and clinical trials are needed to confirm the findings of the study.

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More vote centers will be open starting tomorrow.

There you can vote in person or drop off your mail-in ballot.

They’re open everyday from 8 in the morning till 5.

On Election Day they’ll be open from 7 in the morning until 8 at night when the polls close.

To find the vote center closest to you, go to KPBS-DOT-ORG-SLASH-VOTER-HUB.

If you plan to mail in your ballot, it must be postmarked by Tuesday.

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From KPBS, you’re listening to San Diego News Now. Stay with me for more of the local news you need.

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Today (FRIDAY) President Joe Biden will visit a San Diego technology company that the White House says will benefit from passage of the president's Chips And Science Act.

The visit comes a day after his appearance at a campaign rally for congressman Mike Levin, who’s in a tight race against Republican Brian Maryott.

“The truth of the matter is this off year election is going to matter a great deal. It’s going to determine what happens next year and the next couple of years its going to determine the direction of the country for at least a decade or more, not a joke.”

Ahead of the rally, KPBS North County reporter Tania Thorne spoke to voters in the 49th District… to learn what issues are influencing their votes.

Redistricting pulled more southern Orange County cities into the 49th district… and those cities have voted Republican in the past. But we wanted to get beyond party lines… so we took a tour of the district and talked to voters in both counties… asking them what issues are influencing their choices. The first two voices you’ll hear are Larry Brough of Encinitas and Tricia Terry of Carlsbad. LARRY BROUGH ENCINITAS  homelessness, income inequality, and cost of housing and my kids' education.”  TRICIA TERRY CARLSBAD RESIDENT “Inflation, border control is a big concern RAHN HARDING OCEANSIDE Inflation, but to me the biggest worry I have as a citizen is the future of our country for our young people. “Crimes number one and the economy number two. Those last two voices were Rahn Harding of Oceanside…and a San Clemente voter who didn’t want to share his name along with his opinion. TT KPBS News 

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Sticking with politics and the election …

The San Diego Democratic Party is promoting a dead candidate in the Chula Vista City Attorney race.

KPBS reporter Gustavo Solis says if the late Simon Silva wins, the city may be forced to spend two-million-dollars in a special election.

Democrat Simon Silva won the primary with 49 percent of the votes. He was endorsed by Mayor Mary Salas and the San Diego County Democratic Party. All of that made him a heavy favorite to defeat his opponent, Dan Smith in the general election. That is until the 56-year-old died of cancer in early September. In addition to being a tragedy, Silva’s death also complicates Chula Vista’s election.  So much so that city council members asked for legal advice during a public meeting in September. They wanted to know what would happen if Silva wins. City Clerk Kerry Bigelow gave them the answer.  “If there is a vacancy, then the only option is a special election, and the council can choose among those election dates and the type of election it wants to hold.” Bigelow says a special election would cost Chula Vista taxpayers between $1.5 and $2 million. Chula Vista doesn’t have that kind of money to spend. The city has a structural budget deficit that’s forced the City Council to cut services in recent years. So, it has come as a bit of a shock to some residents that Salas and other Democrats are still campaigning for Silva. Even though electing him would cost the city millions. One resident asked Salas why she continues to publicly support the dead candidate. “Why madam mayor are you promoting Simon Silva for office by placing a sign in your front yard? That puzzles me and it makes me feel like our city council and our mayor are playing politics with this election.” The mayor was offended by the question. “I think it’s shameful that you’re bringing this up. I have his sign in my yard in memory of him, as a gesture of respect. I think the only ones being disrespectful here are the ones that are talking about us playing politics with this.”Salas said she couldn’t understand how people might interpret a campaign sign on her lawn as a political statement. “It’s beyond belief to me and for you to even ask me what my motives are to put a sign in my yard to respect somebody. It’s not politics. It's about love of a man who had a terrific character and it’s just appalling to me that that would be interpreted that way.” But that is exactly how a number of people are interpreting it, including Smith, Silva’s Republican opponent. He says city leaders and the local Democratic Party are still outwardly supporting the deceased candidate. “I think the that the city in general that the voters would think that the $1.5 million that Ms. Bigelow was talking about would be better spent on police officers, firefighters, removing graffiti, homelessness, all these issues.” The local Democratic party did not respond to a request for comment. To make things even more uncertain, there is one scenario in which the City Council could appoint a new City Attorney instead of holding a special election. If Silva wins, the city charter stipulates that current City Attorney Glen Googins would stay in office until the special election. But what happens if Googins resigns? Outside counsel Alena Shamos has the answer. “If Mr. Googins does resign, then it is our interpretation of the charter that there is some discretion for the City Council to appoint a new city attorney.”​​​​​​​ However, Googins said this week that he plans to continue serving as interim city attorney until his successor is elected. Gustavo Solis, KPBS News

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Coming up.... We have some weekend arts events worth checking out. We’ll have that and more, next, just after the break.

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Healthcare leaders are encouraging San Diegans to get vaccinated against the flu and covid.

KPBS reporter Jacob Aere says this comes as many are planning to celebrate the holiday season with large groups inside.

Cases of severe respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV, are high in San Diego County, at the same time as an early and aggressive start of the flu season. That’s in addition to continued community circulation of COVID-19. The three illnesses can create a dangerous mix according to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra. “Please don't go into the holidays and expect to hug and kiss your family members freely, safely if you haven't gotten vaccinated.” Vaccinations are available for the seasonal flu and COVID-19, along with treatment. While there’s currently no vaccine for RSV, the medical community is experienced in treating severe cases, many in young children and older adults. Jacob Aere, KPBS News.

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A UC-SD study of spores show some "dormant" organisms can read environmental cues to know when it’s time to wake up.

KPBS sci-tech reporter Thomas Fudge tells us how these cells seem to rise from the dead.

The spores in the study are what became of bacterial cells that encountered harsh conditions and lack of food. They’re not exactly dead. But UCSD molecular biologist Gurol Suel says they are in a state of dormancy where common signs of life are not seen. “The spore appears to be dead. There’s no metabolism, which is how food gets converted to chemical energy by the cell. There’s no gene expression.”  And yet, the spore survives. And it can become a living bacterium again. In his lab, Suel coaxed them back to life by signaling the presence of food. Science has shown that spores can survive in outer space and be dormant for millions of years. Surviving spores is one way to explain how extraterrestrial life might have come to earth. “One of the ideas of how life emerged on our planet is that maybe it hitchhiked on an asteroid and crash-landed on our planet. But to do that you would have to have some kind of living material that survived that journey.” It might have been a dormant spore that woke up, and made earth its new home. SOQ

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San Diego Unified’s newest elementary school is now officially open.

As KPBS Education reporter M.G. Perez tells us…the school’s name honors the indigenous people who first lived on the land where it now sits.

knee-IP-ah-weye Elementary school is named after a village that thrived along the San Diego River for generations of the Kumeyaay Nation. The new school will eventually serve students through the 5th grade. It opened with children in universal T-K through 2nd grade.  knee-IP-ah-weye translates to mean “a second home”. Kerly Sanchez-Silva has her 4 year old son enrolled and supports the school’s name and heritage.  “why not have your second home be something special…somewhere you can actually learn and become someone who can change the future. The school’s grand opening comes as November begins…Native American Heritage Month. MGP KPBS News. 

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And before you go… we have some weekend arts events to tell you about.

Thanks to KPBS arts producer and editor Julia Dixon Evans.

Cross-border band Tulengua is hosting a two-day music and art festival this weekend.

KPBS Port of Entry podcast host Alan Lilienthal is a member of the band.

'Welcome tu Las Californias' or "A weekend with Tulengua & Friends" aims to "melt the borders between us" and uplift the border region's music and art.

Day one of the festival starts at 6-30 tonight in Tijuanna.

The festival is offering a free, guided group to meet in San Diego and walk across the border and to the venue together.

The second day of the festival starts at 3 p-m tomorrow in Ensenada.

Plus, a photography exhibit dedicated to dance.

The ‘Up Close and Personal’ exhibit will be paired with actual dance performances by San Diego Dance Theater artists and choreographers.

The performances are at 7-30 tonight and tomorrow, and at 2-30 p-m on Sunday at the Light Box Theatre in Liberty Station.

For more info on these events and more, visit kpbs-dot-org-slash-arts.

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That’s it for the podcast today. This podcast is produced by KPBS Senior Producer Brooke Ruth and Producer Emilyn Mohebbi. As always you can find more San Diego news online at KPBS dot org. I’m Debbie Cruz. Thanks for listening and have a great weekend.

President Joe Biden is in San Diego to rally for Democratic Congressman Mike Levin, who’s facing a tough challenge from Republican Brian Maryott in the 49th Congressional District. In other news, the San Diego Democratic Party is promoting a dead candidate in the Chula Vista City Attorney race. Plus, we have some weekend arts events worth checking out.