City attorney candidate Robert Hickey briefly represented JMI Realty and the San Diego Padres in their attempts to finish building Petco Park. On one hand, it shows he’s had experience with the sorts of land-use issues with which the city attorney often deals. But with JMI behind a November ballot initiative the current city attorney says is illegal, it could mean a victorious Hickey would soon face off with his former client.

As a port commissioner, Rafael Castellanos has recused himself from votes three times more than all the other commissioners combined. Usually it was because of ties to developer Sunroad Enterprises, a company with a history of legal issues that end up before the city attorney. Castellanos says his experience with development deals would be an asset to the city.

Attorney Cory Briggs is among the city’s most frequent legal foes. He’s endorsed Gil Cabrera for city attorney, a fact Cabrera’s opponents in the race have seized on. Both Briggs and Cabrera say their collegial relationship will benefit the city once they’re on opposite sides of the table.

The race for County Board of Education is usually a low-profile, low-information sort of contest. But this year, four of the five spots on the county’s board are up for grabs. The board will soon select a new superintendent. And charter school advocates have gotten involved this year, backing four challengers.

We’ve decided to include all our efforts to understand the 2016 election under the banner of San Diego Decides. As part of that, I’ll be writing a biweekly look at what’s happening in the races facing San Diego voters in 2016. It’ll include new reporting, follow-ups on bigger stories, and a round-up of other coverage […]