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Two District 80 seats on the primary ballot

 May 10, 2022 at 5:00 AM PDT

Good Morning, I’m Annica Colbert….it’s Tuesday, May 10th>>>>

Seeing double on the primary ballot
More on that next. But first... let’s do the headlines….######

California regulators will hold off on rewriting the state’s solar market rules until at least July. In a decision released Monday the California Public Utilities Commission asked for more input. They want additional testimony on fixed solar fees, the price of excess electricity, and community solar projects.

Solar advocate Bernadette Del Chiaro says the process is moving forward.

“The public utilities commission, on the bright side, is acknowledging this is a very important decision, especially in light of all the current events, and that they have to get it right."

Comments will be accepted through June, with a decision by july at the earliest.


Two researchers from UC San Diego were elected to the National Academy of Sciences on Monday.

The academy is charged with providing independent and objective advice to the nation on matters of science and technology.

Neurobiologist Yishi Jin and molecular biologist James T. Kadonaga were elected by their peers to join the academy ‘in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research.'


San Diego based King Graphics will pay out over $250 thousand dollars in overtime wages and damages to affected workers in a wage theft settlement. King Graphics is a silk screening and embroidery business that produces merchandise for high profile music artists. The US Department of Labor announced the settlement on Monday. The agency said an investigation found that King Graphics workers didn’t receive their required time and a half rate for overtime hours.


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

Ballots for the June 7th gubernatorial primary election are being sent out this week. But when San Diegans open them up, they’ll find the Assembly District 80 seat is on there not once, but twice.

KPBS Speak City Heights reporter Jacob Aere explains why that is.

After Lorena Gonzalez stepped down from her Assembly District 80 seat in January, a battle to represent San Diego’s South Bay got under way.

First there was a special election primary on April 5th. No candidate got the majority vote, so now there’s a runoff on June 7th. That’s the same day as a separate general election for the same seat. Yes, it’s confusing.

Cynthia Paes | San Diego County Registrar of Voters

“There will be approximately 250,000 voters in the county that will have two assembly district contests on their ballot.”

San Diego County Registrar of Voters, Cynthia Paes explains how this will work.

Cynthia Paes | San Diego County Registrar of Voters

“One will be the general election for the 80 Assembly District for the remainder of the current term…. The second state assembly contest will be for the new term, beginning December 5 of 2022. The new two year term.”

So voters will vote twice — once for a candidate for June through December, and then again for a candidate to go on to the November general election. The November winner will represent the district for the next two years.

For the June through December term, Democrats Georgette Gomez and David Alvarez are the only two candidates competing head-to-head.

Meanwhile the standard election primary will include the two Democrats as well as a pair of Republicans, Lincoln Pickard and John Vogel Garcia.

Southwestern College Professor of Political Science Phil Saenz says whoever wins the special election will technically run as an incumbent in the November general election.

Phil Saenz | Southwestern College Professor of Political Science

“They both have terrific name recognition, they have the political machinery in place, I would say that those are other factors to be considered. But yes, I think there is an advantage especially if they are able to use that time wisely and generate enough positive publicity during that time period.”

To further complicate matters, people who lived in the 2011 district boundaries can vote for the special election candidates… but the standard election primary is only for those who live in the updated 2021 district boundaries.

So some folks may not be able to vote for both …

Cynthia Paes | San Diego County Registrar of Voters

“This is a sample of the ballot, but on the ballot for the 80th assembly district, we have in parenthesis “special runoff to fill vacancy,” which is separate from their regular primary election for the new term for whatever assembly district they reside in now.”

Again, the top two vote getters in the standard primary election this June will head to a November general election.

Saenz says even though the two Democrats are the most likely to be on the November ballot, it's the Republican and independent voters who may make a difference.

Phil Saenz | Southwestern College Professor of Political Science

“Because there was 9000 votes in the previous election that went to the one Republican that was running, so who’s going to get those 9000 votes? Who's going to get the other Republican votes when they vote again in November? And it may come down to Republican voters deciding the election as much as it does for Democrats in that district.”

Now, ballots are on the way to voters.

Cynthia Paes | San Diego County Registrar of Voters

“So the week of May 9th you should expect to receive your official ballot in the mail. On that same day we will have nearly 132 drop off locations open throughout the county.”

Paes says the county will also have 219 voting centers open starting on Saturday, May 28.

Results in both contests will be certified 30 days after the June 7 election. Jacob Aere, KPBS News.

For more election coverage go to KPBS-dot-ORG slash voterhub. There you can enter your address or ZIP code to explore a comprehensive ballot guide,with all the candidates and measures in your district and related news coverage


The chair of the San Diego County Democratic Party is taking a leave of absence from his position amid allegations of sexual assault. KPBS metro reporter Andrew Bowen has more.

AB: Will Rodriguez-Kennedy said on Facebook last week that an ex-boyfriend had made false accusations against him, without going into further detail. His post came after Tasha Williamson, an activist who counseled the accuser, called on Rodriguez-Kennedy to make the accusations public. Williamson told KPBS the accusations involve sex while the accuser was intoxicated and incapable of giving consent. The District Attorney's Office confirmed it is reviewing the case. The party's Ethics Committee is also conducting an investigation into the matter. That committee’s members are appointed by Rodriguez-Kennedy himself. Andrew Bowen, KPBS news.


Leaders from San Diego County and Mexico held a joint celebration Monday of the newly expanded Tijuana International Airport. Race and equity reporter Cristina Kim says leaders expect the additions to attract more tourism and greatly reduce wait times for passengers using the Cross Border Express.

Beginning as early as Tuesday, travelers crossing from San Diego County into the Tijuana International airport….on the Cross Border Express or CBX bridge will be greeted by an all new 100 million dollar facility.

L3: Jorge Goytortúa, CEO Cross Border Bridge

As you cross southbound, you will be in a new facility that is adding more immigration booths, doubling the capacity of customs expansion, and also adding four times the capacity of airline ticket counters.

That means passengers can check their bags in Mexico and reduce lines stateside. Passengers like Logan Creighton of San Clemente…. We caught up to her as she was waiting in line to check in bags for an annual family trip to Mazatlan.

She’s used CBX before and is excited about the easier process.

L3: Logan Creighton, CBX Traveler

To go through customs now before we get to Mexico and it’s the easiest thing. It feels like you are at the airport terminal.

The airport expansion was funded by the Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico, which operates the Tijuana international airport. It’s expected to reduce wait times by 30 to 40% with the goal of making CBX crossings a maximum of 25 minutes.

Guillermo Mir of Orange, California has used CBX at least 20 times before and also applauds any and all expansions because of the number of people using CBX.

Guillermo Mir, CBX Traveler

Que bueno porque si se necesitan y hacen falta. Cruzamos mucha gente aqui y se pone muy apretado para entrar para aca.

It’s great. Because they are needed. They have a lot of people crossing here and it gets very crowded to reenter here.

But he says the wait times for the U.S. side are still too long.

Jorge Goytortúa is the Cross Border ExpressCEO. He says he they’re already at work on improving the northbound experience … especially as they anticipate 4 million people to cross the CBX bridge his year alone.

L3: Jorge Goytortúa, CEO Cross Border Bridge

Right. So we added more booths here in CBCs just in February. We opened and expanded our new facility and we have up to 14 inspection, 16 expansion booths, inspection booths from eight that we have in the in the past. We're bringing more officers soon to also held that the man that we're seeing from our customers.

The expansion also includes 2 new boarding gates and has added several new flights, making it the best connected airport in Mexico for domestic flights.

Cristina Kim. KPBS News


Coming up.... A wearable monitor can now help people with diabetes continually monitor their blood sugar, doing away with finger prick testing. We’ll have more on that next, just after the break.

San Diego scientists have designed a wearable glucose monitor that could become a way for people to check a lot more than just their blood sugar.

KPBS science and technology reporter Thomas Fudge has the story.

Farshad Tehrani is a nanoengineer at UC San Diego led the team that developed the glucose monitor. He says his mother was a type-2 diabetic who had to draw blood to test her blood sugar.

And this finger pricking was so difficult for her to do and I could see the pain in her eyes. And I was like… I’m going to do something about this!

He and his partners created a “microneedle patch” currently about the size of a short stack of quarters. It’s placed on the body and its tiny pins just barely enter the skin to continually test for glucose, alcohol and lactate. The UCSD team says their glucose monitor is different from similar ones because it’s minimally invasive and it tests for other substances.

“And I can tell you this is just the beginning of this story.”

Electrochemical engineer Hazhir Teymourian also developed the monitor.

“We are going to take this to the next level.”

Adding more biomarkers and creating what they call a lab under the skin, so people can monitor their health at home. For now, the UCSD team has published a paper about their research in the journal Nature Biomedical Engineering. Thomas Fudge, KPBS news.


In a recent episode of the Parker Edison Project, host Parker Edison dives into the world of work slang - and how different occupations utilize and develop their own lingo.

Through a conversation with a black female pilot, he uncovers the language that pilots use across the world... and also explores the push for more diversity within the field of aviation. Here's an excerpt from that episode.

And that was an excerpt from the Parker Edison Project podcast, with host Parker Edison. You can find it online at KPBS dot org, or wherever it is you get your podcasts.

That’s it for the podcast today. As always you can find more San Diego news online at KPBS dot org. I’m Annica Colbert. Thanks for listening and have a great day.

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We’ll have an explainer on why the June 7th primary ballot will look a little unique this election. Meanwhile, travelers crossing from San Diego County into the Tijuana International Airport via the Cross Border Express bridge will experience an all new $100 million facility. Plus, wearable monitors can test for glucose, lactate and blood alcohol. Scientists say that’s just for starters.