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Our daily roundup of San Diego’s most important stories (Monday-Friday)
The call of lower taxes, the state of the campaign finance scandal case, a candidate looks to 2020, Comic-Con gets wooed, and where the air (and water) are free with purchase.
Twenty-three acres isn’t much. But $650 million… now we’re talking. That’s the estimated cost of the One Paseo housing-and-business project planned for a chunk of Carmel Valley in the northwestern stretches of the city of San Diego.
After a delay or two, the City Council will finally jump into the debate over One Paseo next month. The project has become a political dividing line with environmentalists (and builders) on one side and environmentalists (and unhappy neighbors) on the other.
We’ve put together a guide to help you understand what’s at stake. Check the map to see where One Paseo is supposed to go (near I-5 just south of Del Mar Heights Road) and catch up on issues of traffic congestion, public transportation, the visual blight of tall buildings and the character of the community.
In part three of her Four Horsemen series on the big things holding back San Diego business, Lisa Halverstadt talks to three local manufacturers who have all been wooed by out-of-state wooers. The pitch is simple: taxes. They’re much higher here on manufacturers. This “puts California in a tough spot: Even as it expresses eagerness to grow manufacturing here, the tax climate gives nearby states an opening to poach local companies,” Halverstadt writes.
Catch up on all the Horsemen here. Friday will be the finale of Halverstadt’s series: We’ve talked about taxes and workers’ compensation premiums. We’ve talked about housing and cost of living. But wait till you see the energy prices company’s face as they try to grow and create jobs.
There was a notable announcement Wednesday. San Diego City Councilman Mark Kersey let it be known that, from his perch as chairman of the Infrastructure Committee, he’s going to try to get a ballot measure put together for an election in 2016 that would close the gap between the money the city has to pay for billions in infrastructure needs and what it needs. Councilman Todd Gloria immediately endorsed the effort. While Kersey didn’t mention a tax increase, as Gloria has in the past, this does look like the rumblings of a potential bipartisan movement for a large bond we’ve previously called the megabond.
Here’s your guide to how that might work.
Mayor Kevin Faulconer recently dropped a giant report on exactly what needs the city thinks it has. It “represents the first time the City has combined all of its capital plans into one document reflecting the entirety of San Diego’s capital improvement needs.”
And it found that the city does not have funding for $1.7 billion of them.
• KPBS checks in on that sprawling campaign finance scandal that’s fallen from the public spotlight. No one seems to be talking about whether any charges will be filed against the district attorney and former Mayor Bob Filner. For background, check our earlier coverage.
• The 2014 election is just over, and now it’s time for politicians to start thinking about … 2020? Yes, state Sen. Joel Anderson has his eye on the decennial election. The Republican wants to be elected county supervisor. (SD Reader)
• The mess over that Jack in the Box redo in the North Park neighborhood is finally heading to court this week. “For the city and burger chain, the case hinges on their claims that residents were 12 days late in filing their complaint over the proposed renovation project.” (SD Reader)
• San Diego cops have been nabbing accused drug sellers in La Jolla’s Bird Rock neighborhood and going after bike thieves by rigging bicycles with tracking devices.
La Jolla, which has clamored for cityhood for decades in an effort to boost police protection, doesn’t have much in the way of violent crime, a police lieutenant says. But “you see a lot of these issues with homeless people sleeping on bridges, panhandling on medians or leaving trash around.” (La Jolla Light)
• According to a new analysis, San Diego doesn’t rank high when it comes to “return on investment” in relation to law enforcement. In other words, we’re not getting a big bank for our (cop) buck.
• “A two-year audit reveals the San Diego Unified School District needs $200 million in safety upgrades, which include fencing improvements and communication fixes.” (NBC)
• As part of its continuing efforts to change the subject, SeaWorld is touting plans “for an interactive experience that will ultimately guide visitors to SeaWorld along a 40-foot descent into a wide-open underwater vista of orcas swimming and frolicking overhead.” (U-T)
• Never mind the history behind the “North Park Theatre” name: The former movie theater is now being renamed “Observatory North Park” after the company that just bought it. The good news: The new company has rehired all employees of the performing venue. (CityBeat)
• A writer at the conservative political blog SD Rostra wasn’t pleased by a CityBeat columnist who snarked about his visit to a gun show at the Del Mar fairgrounds on the second anniversary of the Newtown massacre: “I do appreciate your attempt to understand gun owners by attending the gun show, but it left me asking two questions. What does a horrific crime like Connecticut’s Sandy Hook have to do with a Del Mar gun show, and why didn’t you actually attempt to understand gun owners while attending?”
• Every once in a while I learn something that rocks my world. For example, I figured out a few years ago that “XING” written in paint on the street is not a word. It means “Cross-ing.” Who knew? (Everybody else, apparently.)
Now, I just discovered that I’ve wasted many quarters — multiple dollars worth! — on air for my tires. Turns out that California law requires gas stations to offer air for free to people who buy gas. The L.A. Times says “there’s supposed to be a sign near the compressor notifying people of their right, but such signs may be too small to read, or hidden, or not even posted.”
This is amazing, and there’s even more good news: The water at gas stations is free too with a purchase of gas. Drinks are on me, everybody! Just don’t light a match.
Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego and president of the American Society of Journalists and Authors. Please contact him directly at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter: twitter.com/rdotinga.