inewsource

Local bus drivers say show us the money

Bus drivers and mechanics for San Diego’s North County Transit District allege they are owed thousands of dollars in accrued vacation, sick and personal time from First Transit, a national company that operated NCTD’s bus service for the past seven years under a $178 million contract. It’s unclear how many people are affected and how much money is at stake, though interviews with drivers and…


Financial interests behind San Diego deals worth billions still undisclosed

Despite overwhelming voter approval in 1992, three separate city attorney recommendations and an inewsource investigation, the city of San Diego is still not following a law mandating government transparency. After recent follow-up questions from inewsource, however, three city council members have agreed to address the issue. Section 225 of the city charter requires every person or entity doing business with the city to make a “full and complete disclosure of the…


Poverty in San Diego County higher than during Great Recession

When Jim Floros started his job as president and CEO of the San Diego Food Bank at the beginning of 2013, he says the nonprofit served about 330,000 people a month. The divergence between poverty and employment points to deeper problems in the San Diego region’s economy. That number has since grown to 370,000. That might seem odd given that San Diego County’s unemployment rate fell…


inewsource: ‘Our favorite stories of the year’

As 2016 draws to a close, the reporters and editors of inewsource are highlighting our favorite stories of the year. They ranged from a look at the student homelessness crisis in San Ysidro to investigations into the complex machinations of the powerful California Public Utilities Commission. These stories are also a template for the kind of fearless and data-driven investigative journalism we plan to do even more…


Issa’s and Peters’ voting records show contrasting degrees of party loyalty

Editor’s Note: Darrell Issa is an avid Trump surrogate. Scott Peters supports Hillary Clinton. San Diego-area Congressmen Darrell Issa and Scott Peters don’t have much in common beyond being the incumbents in San Diego County’s only seriously contested Congressional races. For one thing, there’s party affiliation. Peters is a Democrat while Issa is a Republican. For another, there’s tenure. Peters is fairly new to Congress, having…


Auto body fumes a frequent complaint

From Escondido to Chula Vista, Oceanside to National City, complaints about fumes emanating from car painting operations are among the most frequent reported to air authorities. An analysis of records by inewsource shows more than 10 percent of air complaints in San Diego County cite auto and truck painting, with 224 of some 2,100 complaints made between January 2013 and April 2016. The Environmental Health Coalition, one of…


San Diego County dams old, but not out

San Diego County has 54 dams, including the venerable Lake Hodges Dam at Del Dios. State officials judge them all to be safe — an impressive feat considering that the average dam is 62 years old. On the radio…  Giving you quick access to public data inewsource filed Public Records Act requests with the California Division of Safety of Dams and 19 dam-owning public agencies, such as water…


Portable classrooms, despite heat and noise, find permanent homes here

Editor’s Note: Portable classrooms have their share of critics and raison d’etre. An Inewsource investigation published here under special agreement gets to the bottom of the portable classroom question. Escondido Union School District has almost as many portable as permanent classrooms, 419 of the former to 489 of the latter in a district with 19,204 students. In fact, EUSD ranks second in all of San…


5,500 Palomar Hospital; 1,800 Graybill patients affected by medical data theft

An early 2014 breach at Escondido-based Palomar Health affected about 5,500 patients. The public health care district declined to comment, citing “pending legal matters surrounding this breach.” Graybill Medical Group at Escondido had a breach affecting about 1,800 patients. Officials didn’t respond to repeated calls for comment. Experts put the cost of a medical data breach at between $100 to over $360 per record compromised — more…


State of the Union gun control proposals unlikely to affect local gun ownership

(As President Obama outlined new gun control executive orders in his final State of the Union speech tonight, the fact is these rules will have no affect on Escondido, San Marcos, Valley Center and San Diego County gun ownership. As inewsource investigator Joe Berardi found this week, local gun ownership and sales are among the lowest in the state and nation. His report follows…) Most…