Thursday, Feb. 23, 2012 - Evening Edition

Uploaded by KPBSSanDiego on 23.02.2012

>> JOANNE: Coming up next, Mayor sanders says the structural budget deficit is over.
>> DWANE: And there are fewer inmates in Donovan state prison but it's still overcrowded.
KPBS Evening Edition starts now. >> JOANNE: Hello thanks for joining us, I'm
Joanne Faryon. >> DWANE: And I'm Dwane brown.
The mayor says the structural budget deficit is over but what does that mean?
Katie Orr spoke to the mayor. Katie, the city has a surplus for the first
time in years, how did that happen? >> Dwane, the city has been reducing costs,
outsourcing city services, streamlining the way it does business and making cuts to employee
compensation and have eliminated some city positions.
That combined with an increase in revenue has led to this 16.5 million surplus and the
Mayor says this has eliminated the structural deaf at this time.
>> DWANE: What's going to happen with this "extra" revenue?
>> The mayor has several things he would like the money to be spent o including increasing
hours at city libraries and rec centers and putting money into a reserve fund for emergency
infrastructure projects. He would like to see money spent on a fire
station alert system and add 15 cadets to the next police academy but the mayor says
next year's budget is still uncertain and he is anticipating it will be balanced if
not having a surplus as well. >> DWANE: Stay tuned, KPBS Reporter Katie
Orr. >> JOANNE: The Navy is investigating two helicopter
crashes last night, happened over the chocolate mountains, and one of the helicopters was
an huey and the other was a COBRA. KPBS reporter Beth Ford Roth joins us, Beth,
we have heard about helicopter crashes here at home.
What can you tell us about these training missions?
>> These guys were preparing basically for war and going to be deployed to Afghanistan.
The train in thatÊ terrain in that area is similar to that of Afghanistan and we are
learn that go there were explosives on board, this was taking place at night so they were
probably wearing night goggles, which limits depth perception, they were preparing to be
in a war like situation so training is dangerous and we learned it can be fatal.
>> JOANNE: You have been following the reaction it on places like Facebook.
>>> On the camp Pendleton Facebook page scores of marines and marine families are pouring
out their hearts feeling for the family of those who died last night because they know
it could be them. Training is a scary thing for a marine family
because you don't always come home safe you are preparing for war.
People are send issing thoughts and prayers and just a lot of empathy that it could happen
to them. They get phone calls from other parts of the
country when they hear there has been a training accident wondering if it was one of their
loved ones. >> JOANNE: KPBS reporter Beth Ford Roth.
>> DWANE: Defense secretary Leon Panetta ordered an investigation of the marines, and he was
asked to consider the picture in the content of the battle field conditions.
There are appropriate nonjudicial responses that would send the correct message to the
troops and to the world that we do not condone this wrongful behavior, Congressman Duncan
hunter sent a similar letter mast month. >> JOANNE: For the second time in four months
the San Diego unified district received poor marks, stating poor budget practices and relative
liquidity, moody's says the debt is manageable. >> DWANE: Schools in the county are on a list
that might have trouble paying their bills in the next few years, the state department
of education releases the list twice a year and the situation could be different now that
governor brown has released his budget. The postal service will shutdown it's processing
facility on midway drive, it's expected to save more than $2 billion a year, the postal
service plans to consolidate more than 200 plants across the country.
A new report from the legislative analyst for California says the state will miss it's
goal of reduction by the deadline next summer and predicts a shortage of high security prison
beds as more nonviolent prisoners transferred, it's leaving low security gaps.
>> JOANNE: Last year California began shifting inmates from the state prisons to the county
jails and it's to help overcrowding in prisons. This move will save money, as the number of
prisoners lowers, so will the employees. Joining me is lieutenant Patrick Logan, Donovan
state prison's information officer. Thanks for being here.
>>> Your welcome. >> JOANNE: Before alignment began roughly
how many inmates were at Donovan? >> 4800 inmates that we had within our system
there at Donovan. >> JOANNE: And we know at KPBS we spent time
at your prison and we have video of the crowding where we saw inmates in bunks in gyms, do
we see that? >> Since realignment has been enacted we are
no longer within our gyms for housing, and we have deactivated our bunks that we had
on our day room floors and housing units and inmates are within the cells for the first
time in a long time. >> JOANNE: How many fewer inmates are there?
>> Approximately 1,000 or so. >> JOANNE: We went to the state web site to
get a snapshot in terms of before realignment and after and we want to put up this number,
we know that on SeptemberÊ15th, according to the state there were 4300 inmates, FebruaryÊ15th,
3600, it seems so dramatic, why is that? >> I would attribute it to realignment.
We're taking the low level offenders and shifting them over to the county now.
We're only housing serious offenders. >> JOANNE: We know that according to the state
Donovan state prison was built for 2200 inmates, you still have 3600 there, we know they're
not in the gyms, but how are they being housed? >> They're within the cells, we have two bunks
to each cell and from my understanding design capacity is designed for 1 inmate per cell.
>> JOANNE: Along with realignment comes layoffs, we know this is phase 1 of layoffs, at Donovan
are people going to be losing their jobs? >> We're looking at staff losing their jobs,
we have tried everything we can to mitigate some of those.
Volunteer transfers, we have a lot of people retiring at this moment.
Voluntary demotions, we have been trying everything we can to mitigate that.
>> JOANNE: Because this is happening next week, these layoffs.
>>> Correct. >> JOANNE: Do we know what positions will
be eliminated? >> Officers down to office assistants so the
gamut. >> JOANNE: Psychologists, also?
>> Correct. >> JOANNE: Library technicians, dentists.
>>> Correct. >> JOANNE: So service to your programs?
>> I wouldn't say fewer programs, we're increasing the number of programs that we have just because
we have less inmates so there is more accessibility for the inmates to get there.
But we're having to do more with less now. We have to change the way we do business.
>> JOANNE: From a day to day operations point of view you've been at Donovan before realignment,
you're there now, tell me how the day is different. >>> A lot of staff right now because we have
hiring freezes on are doing two and three jobs, they would only be doing their one job
ordinarily, however, everyone is doing a good job at that and we're maintaining, the institution
is safer for the staff and the inmates and the public.
Our yard sizes that we had are smaller, class sizes in our education system is smaller,
which relates to safety. >> JOANNE: And do you see the population declining
even more going forward? >> Yes, I do.
>> JOANNE: Lieutenant Patrick Logan, thank you for being here.
>>> You're welcome, thank you. >> DWANE: Alarming news from health officials
who report more young adults are using heroin, a look at why in just a moment and the debate
over cutting red tape involved in development decisions.
Evening Edition. >> DWANE: As we reported last night, heroin
use in San Diego county has jumped more than 200% among 18 to 25 year olds, I spoke earlier
today with Susan Bower the director of drug and alcohol services.
>> DWANE: Thank you for joining us, when it comes to heroin and the increase in its use
among young adults is there any correlation or connection to the abuse of pharmaceutical
drugs? >> Absolutely, what we're hearing in the community
from parents as well as from our treatment programs that are serving people is that folks
are coming into their programs with an addiction to heroin and they got there by starting off
by using prescription drugs. >> DWANE: Really?
And oxicoton is one of those? >> Yes, and those types of drugs.
>> DWANE: So is it becauseÊ is it a cost factor?
>> Absolutely. Once someone is using prescription drugs and
has progressed, their tolerance increases meaning they need more pills to get the same
high or feeling and it becomes expensive. Once they're in the circles and in that culture
it becomes easy, if you will, to move over and begin using heroin and pretty soon almost
immediately, that's the drug of choice. >> DWANE: And a number particularly left arming
is the jump among 18 to 25 years old showing up at the county treatment clinics.
You used to work at a clinic, let's show the breakdown.
In 2007219 young adults admitted for treatment said heroin was their drug of choice.
By last year, the number more than tripled to 719, that's an increase of 229%.
>>> Yes, staggering. >> DWANE: So Susan is this high number affecting
the way the county deals with its treatment centers?
>> In terms of treatment being available to folks, treatment is absolutely available.
How we deal with treatment is we deal with it the way we have, we provide the best treatment
we can to address their issues and learn to live a clean and sober life.
>> DWANE: I'm wondering does the treatment of heroin addiction differ from other substance
abuse? >> Not so much in most ways w generally someone
that's using any drug, whether it be heroin, meth, what have you, they need to learn to
live in a different way. They need new skills, how to copy differently
with stressors, new friends, families, places, things to be around, they need to avoid triggers,
and oftentimes if someone is using alcohol or other drugs whether it be heroin or anything
else, they're likely to be using other drugs as well, nobody uses just one drug.
>> DWANE: Are they reluctant to go into treatment? >> It varies.
Generally, though, in our publically funded treatment programs we see folks referred by
probation so a lot of people are reluctant and they need that push, they need someone
to tell them "things are falling part for you because when you're in the throes of addiction
you're not seeing reality." >> DWANE: Are there trends, more men than
women? >> Generally we see more men overall.
In relation to heroin abuse we're seeing fairly similar between males and females, but we
tend to see more meals in our treatment system. >> DWANE: What about heroin related deaths
in the county? >> They are increasing.
Data that was received from the medical examiner's office indicates real trends that we need
to pay attention to around folks ending up in the medical examiner's office which is
not where we want them to end up. >> DWANE: Give us a sense of how many deathses
were attributed in the last year or so. >>> I believe the medical examiner has put
out information related to that that really shows significant increase, the specific numbers
I don't have on hand, though. >> DWANE: We have numbers that say 71 deaths
and even some among teenagers. >>> Yeah and that's the thing the medical
examiner has been concerned about is the increase among teenagers.
>> DWANE: I guess the positive news here is there is help, right?
>> Absolutely. >> DWANE: And you have a help line?
>> We do. >> DWANE: Let's put that up on the screen.
>>> Great, thank you. Just to emphasize, treatment is available.
You don't have to drain your life savings to receive quality treatment services, oftentimes
I go out into the community and speak to the community and they have no idea how to access
treatment or that it costs so much money they cannot afford it and that's not true.
The county funds an expensive network of treatment programs called the access and crisis line
seven days a week 24 hours a day and get a referral.
>> DWANE: Susan Bower thank you so much. >>> Sure, thank you.
>> JOANNE: It can take developers more than a decade to get permits to build in San Diego's
back country. County supervisors are about to vote on recommendations
to cut red tape to speed up the process. KPBS Reporter Alison St. John says they are
afraid the local planning groups will be sidelines. >>> John turner has lived in valley center
for 14 years. >>> When I hear about cutting red tape especially
in rural areas like valley center I'm concerned that the People in valley center will end
up not having the greatest input to that land use.
It's not like people in valley center are against development but it's got to be prudent
and over a thought out period of time. Can't be just done for economic reasons because
the county needs tax dollars or that there is a proposal that will create so many jobs.
>>> Hans bridge nearly lost his home nearly a year ago when a new road would have cut
through his property to a new development plan that wasn't even permitted.
>>> They were cutting through our property and our home so at our expense they were trying
to develop their development. So after a lot of fighting, three years, we
were able to finally get the road off the map.
But without the help of the planning group and all the people we've met and were knowledgeable
in the process about it, it would never have been possible.
>>> The population of San Diego county is going to grow by about a million people in
the next 20 years so the big question is where are all those people going to live?
Here in rural valley center the population is going to double and the planning group
has been playing a crucial role in deciding how that growth can happen.
>>> This is where the north village is slated to go in, right here is a shopping center,
then a stream where the oaks are, they will be preserved.
We're the ones on the ground, we know what people want, what will sell in our community
and we work with a developer to come up with something that is a much better product than
they could have come up with by themselves and we do it for free.
>>> This major new development will bring 800 new homes and 400,000 square feet of commercial
space, the developer, Jerry Goen says he saved money utilizing the planning group.
>>> It's important that the information we receive early on, before we start drawing
anything helps us design and give the community something they want.
Instead of going through a process that we think they might want and then finding out
after we've spent all our money, which is in some cases, hundreds of thousands of dollars
to find out it's something they don't want. We basically look at the oak trees that you
see in the background, we incorporate them, carefully watching the environment and incorporate
them into our design. There are projects that are being denied.
These projects are people that are coming in and trying to force in their idea instead
of the idea of what the people that live there that have to live with it want.
>>> Civil engineer Ivan fox says some land developers have found it impossible to work
with planning groups. >>> Sometimes we use the term "caves, that's
citizens against virtually everything. >>> He is in favor of eliminating planning
groups and have limited public engine put only in the early stages of a project.
>>> I want to remove the high cost, there is a high cost associated with land development
and I don't think in the end we end up with a better product it's just more expensive.
>>> Supervisor Bill horn knows there is too much resistance to eliminate planning groups
but he would like to limit their role. >>> I think the issue here is liability.
>>> If you look at everything that he has done, it makes you very suspicious that he
isÊ we know he's got property rights and it makes you suspicious that he wants to curtail
the democratic process so developers can get in more quickly.
>>> A lot of people are busy, raising kids, taking care of their families, trying to make
a living in a difficult environment and when you shorten the process down and eliminate
that input I think what you get is a very bad decision.
>> JOANNE: That story by KPBS Reporter Alison St. John.
The county board of supervisors will take up the recommendation next Wednesday.
>> DWANE: In just a moment we will show you how furry friends are teaching children an
important life lesson, this is KPBS Evening Edition.
>> JOANNE: Tonight on the public square a follow up to a story about water bills.
Earlier this week we told you about investigate active news source that talks about increasing
water rates while the city sat on a cash reserve. The money is to be used to fix aging pipes
but many projects have not been completed. San Diego's chief operating officer took exception
to the article. He says the reporting was misleading, the
article claims that public utilities department is sitting on $630 million in excess funds
that figure was a snapshot in time and say out of context.
A media partner responded to the criticism, Lorie hearn rights "these are the facts:the
public utilities department is collecting surplusing from the rate payers, the citizens
the mayor appointed top monitor citizen's money.
You can like us on Facebook, find us on Twitter or email me.
You can see these stories and more on our web site at edition.
>> DWANE: The San Diego humane society is teaming up with two after school programs
in city heights designed to teach children compassion and respect for all living things.
With 5 year old Sebastian the guinea pig in hand, we learn about the program.
>>> We work with kids in the city heights area.
>>> Dr.ÊPeterson went to school in city heights and the idea came about after seeing mistreatment
of animals in the news. They use rabbits and Guinea pigs right now
but may add dogs and cats to the mix. >>> It's best to start with young people and
help them understand how we feel is similar to how animals feel and when we treat them
with respect it makes for a better community. >> DWANE: The humane society has been serving
San Diego since 1880. These are animal pictures the students have
drawn. Dr.ÊPeterson says "trust" is a three week
program. It's held at horaceMann middle school.
>>> The groups are small, and we hope to repeat the classes over the course of the school
year. >>> Right now you're getting to know your
animals. >> DWANE: Each student receives a tote bag
to care for their animals, a journal, a bag for treats and this positive reinforcement
device called a clicker. >>> The animals learn that when they hear
the clicker they did a behavior we liked and they will get a treat.
>> DWANE: The rabbit didn't react to the clicker. The humane society is teaming up with pro
kids and first tee all programs designed to enrich the lives of children from low income
families. >> JOANNE: You can watch and comment on any
of our stories on our web site. >> DWANE: Thanks for joining us v a great
night. >> JOANNE: And here is a look at your forecast.
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