MTC News Briefs: May 19–June 15, 2017

Electric vehicle credit ends May 31

There are 24,000 electric vehicle (EV) drivers in the San Diego area who have the opportunity to enroll in the Electric Vehicle Climate Credit program and receive a credit of at least $50 or more on their SDG&E residential bill.

The program is part of a statewide greenhouse gas reduction effort administered by the California Air Resources Board (CARB).

Those who drive an all-electric vehicle or a plug-in hybrid EV and live in the SDG&E service territory are eligible to participate in this program. EV drivers have until May 31 to sign up at Customers will need their SDG&E account number and DMV registration card to sign up. A bill credit will be applied this summer. The amount of the credit will be based on the number of people who have applied.

Each year the Electric Vehicle Climate Credit will apply to current EV drivers. This means that if an EV changes ownership or leasing status, the new owner will be able sign up for the bill credit. EVs registered to residents will receive the credit but not those that are part of commercial fleets.

EV drivers can also save more money by charging their car at home between midnight and 5 a.m. through the SDG&E time-of-use rate program. For more information on EV rates for your house, visit For information about EV charging for apartment or condo residents, visit

Del Cerro artist wins prize

The winning design by Weston Riffle (Courtesy of the artist)

On May 11, La Victoria Brand held an exclusive dinner party and art contest in celebration of the company’s 100th anniversary.

Five San Diego artists were chosen as finalists in the art competition and $10,000 was distributed among the top three winners. Del Cerro artist Weston Riffle took third place in the competition and won $1,000.

Artist Gregg Visintainer won the $7,500 grand prize and Stephanie Clair won $1,500.

For the contest, the artists were tasked with creating an original piece that showcased a “modern West Coast lifestyle,” while also incorporating the La Victoria brand.

The dinner party also featured music by The Verigolds and food prepared by La Jolla chef Christine Rivera of Galaxy Taco.

Donate to the San Diego Follies

Christian Community Theater (CCT), which is based in El Cajon, is looking for donations to be used in a silent auction at a fundraising luncheon to benefit the “San Diego Follies,” an annual production that showcases the talents of San Diego’s seniors.

The luncheon will take place June 4 at the Southwest Yacht Club, 2702 Qualtrough St., in Point Loma. All the proceeds from the fundraiser will go to the production of the “San Diego Follies” — the committee and cast are all volunteers. CCT is a nonprofit organization and all donations are tax deductible. Efforts to provide promotional considerations will be given to donors in the production’s advertising and all donors will be recognized at the show itself.

This year’s “San Diego Follies” will be held June 22–25 at the Lincoln Performing Arts Center, 4777 Imperial Ave., San Diego.

For more information on donating to the Follies, contact Bonnie Deming at 619-609-6028 or

Henry student wins laptop

Patrick Henry High School student Olivia Buchanan was one of 40 winners of the annual Laptop Scholarship Contest put on by the Metropolitan Transit System (MTS). Buchanan received her new computer at a ceremony at the 12th & Imperial Transit Center on Thursday, May 11.

More than 165 students from 53 different high schools entered the contest to win a Dell-Inspiron 2-in-1 13.3-inch convertible touch-screen notebook computer.

Students in grades nine–12 wishing to compete were required to submit an advertising campaign strategy aimed at attracting new MTS Trolley and bus passengers. Students had to define a target audience, message strategy and create an original poster ad design with a slogan.

As a bonus, two of the winning advertisements will be displayed at an MTS bus shelter.

“These students are very creative. The advertising campaigns focused on important issues to San Diego transit such as helping the environment, realizing cost-savings and tourism promotion,” said Harry Mathis, MTS board chair, in a press release. “We appreciate the partnership with Coca-Cola and the San Diego County Office of Education to help promote this contest and make it a success. It’s a great learning experience for the students.”

Del Cerro student is cursive champ

Resident Sophia D’Amato, a student at St. Therese Academy, is a winner of the fourth annual Cursive is Cool International Cursive Writing Contest.

Del Cerro resident Sophia D’Amato, a student at St. Therese Academy, is a winner of the fourth annual Cursive is Cool International Cursive Writing Contest. She placed in the fourth grade category for girls and won first place.

The American Handwriting Analysis Foundation, creators and coordinators of the contest, had an overwhelming response with more entries this year from both boys and girls across the U.S., and so much response from Canada, that a separate contest in French was also added this year.

“The contest was our way of getting kids to practice their cursive and to think about why they like it,” said Gayna Scott, Campaign for Cursive chair, in a press release. “We received some amazing entries. It was great to read the fun reasons kids like cursive and the wonderful samples they submitted of their best handwriting. The judging is always such a difficult thing to do.”

Campaign for Cursive describes itself as “a grassroots, all-volunteer movement gaining support across the country and the world” and was a promoter of the contest.

National Handwriting Day and International Handwriting Week events in January of this year promoting cursive handwriting took place in schools, public libraries, historical societies, and radio and TV stations across the world. During the events, people were encouraged to pick up a pen and write, take selfies of themselves with their handwriting, and do a “pencil toast” to promote the importance of writing by hand.

For more information, visit and

Allied Gardens resident named Alliant Educational Foundation CEO

The Alliant Educational Foundation (AEF) has named Valin Brown of Allied Gardens as its new chief executive. AEF is a nonprofit organization that partners with Alliant International University and other institutions of higher education to provide funding and resources to support student scholarships and faculty research grants.

Valin Brown of Allied Gardens is the new chief executive of Alliant Educational Foundation.

As CEO, Brown will be responsible for maintaining AEF’s relationship with Alliant International University, building connections within the community, managing staff and financial operations, and collaborating with AEF’s board of directors, according to a press release from the organization.

Brown has more than 15 years of experience managing education-related nonprofits and most recently served as senior vice president and chief development officer for United Way of San Diego County. He also spent six years as CEO for the Carlsbad Educational Foundation, another six as executive director for Colorado Bright Beginnings in Denver, and he previously served as regional manager for the Metro Denver Bright Beginnings/Mile High United Way, as well as manager of community initiatives for United Way of Knoxville in Tennessee.

To learn more or make a donation to the Alliant Educational Foundation, visit

Foster program moves to Grantville

Just in time for May’s National Foster Care Month, a local organization that supports foster youth — Just in Time for Foster Youth (JIT) — has moved its headquarters to 4560 Alvarado Canyon Road, #2G, off Mission Gorge Road.

JIT describes the new location as “youth-friendly” and praised its easy access to the Grantville Trolley Station in a press release.

JIT helps foster youth achieve self-sufficiency and well-being after they “age out” or leave the foster care system. The goal is to provide a community of caring adults, offering consistent, long-term help so the young adults can thrive and enjoy productive, satisfying lives.

“It’s unimaginably difficult for young adults forced to leave the foster care system at age 18 without a safety net. Just in Time for Foster Youth is that safety net,” said Executive Director Don Wells in a press release. “We’re excited by the possibilities of supporting our participants to become more confident, capable and connected in their new environment.”

The move consolidated multiple former workspaces in Old Town, bringing youth services, volunteer engagement, investor stewardship and administration under a single roof. The new building also offers more space for larger workshops and additional room to house donations for My First Home.

“We’re looking forward to designing an environment that welcomes foster-care youth from the time they walk in the door to their 27th birthday,” Wells said.

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