Henry student receives two scholarships
Patrick Henry graduate Alby Penny is on a role.
On June 24, Cox Charities Advisory Board members awarded a total of $77,000 in scholarships to 25 students, including Penny, “This year has been unprecedented in so many ways for our graduating high school seniors, and we’re excited to bring them some good news during this challenging time,” said Sam Attisha, senior vice president and region manager for Cox Communications in California. “These 2020 Cox Scholars are so deserving of these scholarships, and Cox and our employees are proud to recognize all of their hard work and accomplishments.”
For more information on the Cox Scholars program, visit www.coxcharitiesca.org.
On July 8, Wheelhouse Credit Union announced that Penny was one of five awardees of its Sustainability College Scholarship Program for who demonstrated leadership, public service, and a desire to make a sustainable difference in their schools and communities. Penny’s Wheelhouse Sustainability Scholarships earned him $1,000.
For more information about Wheelhouse, visit www.wheelhousecu.com.
Penny will be attending Carnegie Mellon University in the fall and is planning on majoring in electrical and computer engineering and hopes to pursue a career in the renewable energy sector. He enjoys volunteering in his community and credits the institutions he’s spent his time volunteering with playing a large role in forming his character — the Boy Scouts and the La Jolla Quaker Meeting.
SANDAG reports Black and Hispanic communities hardest
hit by COVID-19
As the San Diego region’s labor market continues to experience a historic decline, Black and Hispanic communities are most impacted, according to a new SANDAG Data Science and Analytics report, “COVID-19 Impact on the San Diego Regional Economy: Black and Hispanic Communities Hardest Hit.”
Since the stay home order began in mid-March, SANDAG has closely monitored the economic impact of the pandemic on the San Diego region.
The new SANDAG report finds that when compared to the White population, Black and Hispanic populations are more than four times as likely to live in areas that have been impacted by COVID-19 and unemployment. More than two-thirds of the region’s Black (67%) and Hispanic (70%) populations reside in ZIP Codes with higher than average unemployment rates. Approximately half of Black (52%) and Hispanic (49%) residents live in ZIP Codes with higher than average COVID-19 cases.
White and Asian communities have been less impacted, with 14% and 24% respectively residing in areas experiencing high rates of unemployment and COVID-19 cases.
The report found that Black and Hispanic employees are overrepresented in the high contact and essential workforces. Hispanic employees account for 32% of the overall workforce but represent 46% of those working in the food service industry, and 37% of those working in the retail sector (excluding grocery and drugstore). Black employees account for nearly 5% of the overall workforce but represent more than 7% who work in childcare and social services, 9% in trucking, warehouse, and postal service, and nearly 20% of public transit workers.
Free COVID antibodies test with blood donation
Through the month of July, San Diego Blood Bank is testing all blood donations for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, the virus that causes the COVID-19 as a service to the community and to assist in identifying potential candidates for convalescent plasma. Appointments are required for all blood donations.
The antibody test detects if someone’s immune system has developed antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2 virus, regardless of if someone showed symptoms. This is not a diagnostic test. It will not detect active infections or recent exposure.
Donors who are found positive for SARS-CoV-2 will be able to donate COVID-19 convalescent plasma (CCP) the next time they donate. CCP is being used to treat patients in critical condition.
The test is authorized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for emergency use. Per state law, all reactive and nonreactive test results will be reported to the California Department of Public health. Donors will receive results in their SDBB wellness portal 7-10 days after donation.
To be eligible to donate blood, you must be at least 17 years old, weigh at least 114 pounds and be in general good health. To make an appointment, visit www.sandiegobloodbank.org/donate or call 619-400-8251.
BBB warns of quarantine puppy scams
Families spending more time at home have turned to the internet to look for a pet. Scammers advertise on websites for pets that don’t exist and are never shipped. The coronavirus pandemic has given scammers more opportunities to ask for money upfront. Scammers also make excuses as to why buyers can’t see the pet in person before heartbroken, would-be pet owners figure out they have been conned.
Better Business Bureau Serving the Pacific Southwest (BBB) warns consumers as an increase in puppy scams have nearly doubled during the past few months. Victims claim to have lost hundreds to thousands of dollars in deposits, specialty crates, COVID-19 sanitation, insurance, shipping and other fees. Since January 2020, BBB has received a total of 61 puppy scams reported on BBB Scam Tracker, and a loss of over $30k just in the Pacific Southwest region. BBB recommends the following tips to avoid getting caught in this tear-jerking scam:
Visit the pet in person. Proper precautions can allow visitation with a possible pet, such as maintaining social distancing and wearing facial masks. Consumers can also ask to see a puppy over a live video chat. Use reverse image search to locate if the picture of the puppy appears on different sites.
Avoid payment methods that can not trace the seller. Methods that offer no recourse and no way to get money back for victims of fraud include wire service, gift cards or apps such as PayPal or Zelle. Credit cards may be accepted but fraudsters will steal the information to use it in other scams.
Research breed prices. Purebred dogs advertised at discounted prices may be fraudulent. Look out for additional fees for services such as vaccination, shipping, special crating or Covid-19 related charges, which could be a sign of a scam.
Reach out to local animal shelters. Adopting from verified shelters alleviates potential scam threats. Shelters are looking for families to adopt or foster, which helps reduce overcrowding at facilities. Humane Society of the United States refers consumers to local shelters.
Report scams to BBB Scam Tracker and the Federal Trade Commission. Consumers also can report to petscams.com, which catalogues puppy scammers, tracks complaints and endeavors to take down fraudulent pet sales websites.
To schedule an interview, or to speak with a BBB Public Relations Specialist, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 602-212-2204.
Water board adopts rate increases for 2021
The San Diego County Water Authority’s Board of Directors has adopted a rate increase of 4.8% for untreated water and 4.9% for treated water in calendar year 2021 for its 24 member agencies.
The board told its staff to return in September or October with any further opportunities to reduce the 2021 rate increases, such as a decrease in rates set by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California or the acquisition of federal or state economic stimulus funds.
Rate increases are driven by reduced water sales, higher rates and charges from MWD and continued regional investments in supply reliability. The adopted rates are 30% lower than proposed last month following refinements by the staff.
In 2021, the Water Authority will charge its 24 member agencies an all-in municipal and industrial rate of $1,474 per acre-foot for untreated water, or $68 more per acre-foot than they currently pay. Charges would be $1,769 per acre-foot for treated water, or $83 more per acre-foot than in 2020.
Actual figures will vary by member agency, and each member agency will incorporate costs from the Water Authority into the retail rates it charges to residents, businesses and institutions.