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Our daily roundup of San Diego’s most important stories (Monday-Friday)
How your water bill is subsidizing golf courses, how the public can take back the stadium debate and other quick news hits.
While San Diego water customers have watched rates increase year after year, one subgroup has been sheltered from the hikes: golf courses and other companies that tap into the city’s purple pipe system.
“Purple pipe rates haven’t gone up at all since 2001,” Ry Rivard reports. “That means regular water users have been propping up that system and its low rates by paying tens of millions of dollars over the past dozen years in subsidies.”
The city’s moving to increase purple pipe rates, but ultimately the fees would still be lower than other customers’ — it’s not the same quality water after all — and the subsidies would continue.
As civic leaders move heaven and earth to try to appease the Chargers, they’ve sidestepped entirely the question of whether public money for a new stadium is a good idea.
“Officials’ arrogance in dismissing the electorate is stunning but not surprising,” writes Bob Stein, a retired ad exec, in a commentary for us. “They seem to believe they’re immunized from consequences by promising San Diegans a chance to vote on a funding plan.”
So what can residents do to re-enter the debate and potentially change the outcome? Launch an ad campaign, says Stein.
• The NFL’s owners meeting is coming up in Chicago. Before the full meeting, they’ll get status updates on stadium projects in Oakland, San Diego, St. Louis and Los Angeles. (Los Angeles Times)
San Diego’s three amigos – County Supervisor Ron Roberts, City Attorney Jan Goldsmith and Mayor Kevin Faulconer – will update us on our own stadium progress at noon today at a press conference overlooking the Q.
No elected officials traveled to Chicago. The mayor’s chief of staff described it as “a very short update meeting to the [relocation committee]” and said it would last 45 minutes.
The best we might hope for is a revealing finally of San Diego’s financing plan for a new stadium – the one they think could win over voters.
• The California Coastal Commission has long had a rule that everyone, regardless of income, should be able to find affordable lodging along the coast. But the commission’s had mixed success as the hotel landscape has shifted. (Union-Tribune)
• The cross-border bridge connecting directly to Tijuana’s A.L. Rodríguez International Airport is set to open in December. (Union-Tribune)
• The temporary fire station in Skyline is expected to open on Thursday. We’ve followed the city’s efforts to boost emergency response in several communities, which have already had a positive impact on San Ysidro and Encanto.
• The San Francisco Chronicle profiles a San Diego man named John Gibson, who was left with irreversible brain damage after a drug binge at UC Berkeley. The wrenching story lays out his family’s experience with providing his care at home.
• Oceanside Unified School District is considering a partnership with the prestigious Orange County School of the Arts, a Santa Ana school that might inject a little life into Jefferson Middle School. (Union-Tribune)
• And for students a few grade levels up, UCSD is launching a program to help grad students shift out of academia and get hired in areas outside of their field of study. (Union-Tribune)
• Hospitals all over the country are facing the daunting new risk of penalties by Medicare for having too many readmissions. The Union-Tribune delves into Scripps Health’s current programs to help patients stay healthy after they leave the hospital.
• Sydney Seau paid tribute to her father, ex-Charger Junior Seau, at his posthumous induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame this weekend. A modification to the Hall of Fame’s rules allowed her to participate, but not to deliver the speech she wanted to. Instead, she recorded that speech and the New York Times posted the video online just hours before the ceremony.
• How to piss off a San Diego Chargers fan. (Union-Tribune)
• A video of a San Diego pier fisherman catching a drone flying overhead went somewhat viral over the weekend, thanks to the blog Gizmodo. San Diego’s at the forefront of innovation in the drone industry, which we covered during our quest last year.
Catherine Green is deputy editor at Voice of San Diego. She handles daily operations while helping to plan new long-term projects. You can contact her directly email@example.com or 619.550.5668. Follow her on Twitter:@c_s_green.
Partner Voices is a paid promotion that showcases the work of local nonprofits and volunteer opportunities in the community.
On Monday, Aug. 17, you can join VOSD CEO Scott Lewis, reporter Andrew Keatts and other local VIPs as they jump off the Ocean Beach Pier in support of the San Diego Junior Lifeguards. The annual pier jump helps raise money for the Water Proofing San Diego Initiative that teaches swimming and water safety to local children.
You can help by donating to the San Diego Junior Lifeguard Foundation directly or, you can join in the fun and jump off the Ocean Beach Pier with a donation of $75. You must be at least 18 years old and a strong ocean swimmer – you have to swim back to the beach which is between 500-1,000 yards. Get more event details here. To find out more about San Diego Junior Lifeguards, read their Partner Voices story.
Read more Partner Voices stories here and learn about all the great work local nonprofits are doing in our community.