Economy

Three Ocean Beach Restaurants Join Campaign Against Plastic

May 21, 2015 by Staff
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Three restaurants in Ocean Beach have joined a city-wide campaign against plastic containers.

The Lazy Hummingbird Cafe, Raglan Public House and Wonderland Ocean Pub are part of the campaign that has at the moment 16 San Diego restaurants pledging to eliminate plastic containers in exchange for paper. Each one will have a special sticker outside their store to show they have made the switch.

The other restaurants include: …

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What’s Going On With the Stadium and the Chargers?

May 20, 2015 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter

Little green men from Mars could have seized city hall on Monday the 18th and I doubt anybody would have noticed.

The Mayor’s stadium advisory group presented its vision for building a facility worthy of consideration by the National Football League and its San Diego Chargers franchise. And that was the talk of the town.

Tuesday’s UT-San Diego had eight, count’em, eight stories about the team and the stadium proposal. (At least that’s what I saw on their web site. There could be more…)

Columnist Kevin Acee displayed some skepticism in the sports section:

A starting point will be the amount of money the Chargers are being asked to contribute.

There is the $300 million initial investment, which is at least $100 million more than the team has said it can give. Then there is the rent, almost $476 million in payments over 30 years ($10 million in the first year with a 3 percent annual increases), of which the city would realize $173 million.

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Going Homeless to Pay For College

May 20, 2015 by John Lawrence

WSUVBy John Lawrence

My daughter was entering the freshman class at UCSD in 1992 and the plan was for me to move out of our condo where we had lived for 18 years and in with my girlfriend. Renting out the condo would bring in $1000 a month and let me pay for a good share of my daughter’s college expenses.

After about a year when the relationship didn’t work out, I decided that rather than rent an apartment which would cost me what I needed to pay my daughter’s expenses, I would go homeless instead.

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Sex Trafficking of Minors Hits Close to Home in Point Loma

May 19, 2015 by Source
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Point Loma Democrats Hear about Sex Trafficking

By Lois Lane

The program, “Sex Trafficking of Minors in San Diego,” last Sunday, May 17, 2015, seemed distant from the Ocean Beach and Point Loma audience. We quickly learned that this is one indeed one of our local problems and one of the most profitable illegal activities, greatly out-earning drug dealing. The product is also renewable – you can only sell a package once, but with prostitution, you can sell the same product over and over.

The speakers were Ali Serano, Assistant US Attorney, Sergeant Chris Cameron, San Diego County, and Gayle Sollfrank, representing a resource for victims, GenerateHope.

If we don’t think this is our problem, Ms. Serano displayed a printout from that day, showing six active Point Loma links on the primary Internet site (not publicized here).

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The Fight for Progressive Tax Reform Continues: It’s Time to Make It Fair

May 18, 2015 by Jim Miller

MIF Logo1By Jim Miller

When Proposition 13 was first approved by voters in 1978 it was sold as a protection for single-family homeowners. But what voters were not told is that Prop. 13 contained giant loopholes that allow big corporations and wealthy commercial property owners to avoid paying their fair share of local property taxes.

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OB Rag’s Week-End Sedition News From Ocean Beach and Point Loma

May 16, 2015 by Staff
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Here’s the OB Rag’s “Weekend Sedition” – a round-up of local Ocean Beach and Point Loma news and notes .

*Memorial for Anne Gillin was held on Sat., May 16
* City Atty Office Ordered 10 Medical Pot Dispensaries to Close – Including 1 in OB
*Colony of Cats Fed by OB Joggers and Bikers
*Collier Park Tree Removed after falling
*March vs Monsanto – May 23
*Plum Street House in Perpetual Remodel Under Ultimatum
*Carlsbad May Have Won Fight Against Power Plant
*Overweight, the San Salvador Replica Postpones Official Launch
*Crime report – 52 Crimes 4/24/2015 – 5/3/2015
John Noble of Coastal Sage Adopts a Plot in Balboa Park
*Point Loma Nazarene Extends Nursing Program

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Progress, San Diego style: Where more gets you less

May 14, 2015 by Source
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By Norma Damashek / NumbersRunner

I’ve lived in San Diego long enough to remember what things were like “way back when.” And you know what? Not that much has changed!

True, there are more people living here than ever before. More restaurants and bars and multiplex theaters. More monotonous red roofs rimming bulldozed hilltops in the city’s north suburbs. Many more seals and sea lions hauling out on La Jolla beaches.

There are also many more sleek highrises downtown (but, oddly, fewer pedestrians on the sidewalks than you might expect – a mere fraction of what you’ll find in other urban downtowns).

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What’s in the Mayor’s Budget for Ocean Beach?

May 13, 2015 by Source
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By Lois Lane

The City of San Diego Budget hearings are just beginning. OB did get to keep the standard services – trash pickup, beach maintenance, lifeguard services, library and rec center support – all covered under general categories.

What is unfunded is interesting.

The North Ocean Beach Gateway Project (adjacent to Robb Field) Phase II for FY2016 shows no additional funding.

In contrast, FY2015 touts as an accomplishment “Completion of the Ocean Beach Gateway Mini Park.”

OB also did not get the requested library or lifeguard station upgrade in the budget as proposed.

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Dark Clouds on San Diego’s Horizon

May 13, 2015 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter / San Diego Free Press

Developments over the past few days bode poorly for San Diego’s image and civic pride.

One of the main tourist attractions, the football team, the successor to the downtown development agency and the home for Comic Con are all in turmoil.

Controversies have arisen concerning the lone Democrat on the Board of Supervisors and the sheriff’s department is being investigated for civil rights violations arising out of the arrest of a mentally handicapped man.

So many stories, so little time to tell them all:

Sex and Drugs at SeaWorld …. COME INSIDE

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Gov. Brown on Climate Change: “We’re dealing with it and it’s damn serious.”

May 13, 2015 by John Lawrence
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Then Why Haven’t You Put Any Restrictions on Big Oil and Big Ag?

By John Lawrence

Governor Jerry Brown is leading the nation and perhaps even the world in his efforts to do something about climate change and global warming which is causing epic drought conditions in California.

He has mandated that greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced to 40 percent below 1990 levels over the next 15 years. Brown called this the most aggressive benchmark enacted by a government in North America. All well and good.

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Security Forces Clash with Baja California Farmworkers

May 12, 2015 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter

Police raids and street protests in Baja California have led to scores of injuries in the latest round of labor strife over pay and working conditions in San Quintin, an agricultural region producing produce sold in the United States.

This weekend’s violence followed the failure of Interior Minister Luis Miranda Nava to show up for a meeting with leaders of farm worker organizations in the area.

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It’s the Neoliberalism, Stupid

May 4, 2015 by Jim Miller

Photo by Keith Allison

By Jim Miller

Last week when the Baltimore Orioles played a game without fans in Camden Yard, there was much media coverage marking how the surreal event was unprecedented in American sports.

Perhaps, but it was not completely without precedent globally as the 1987 soccer match played to an empty stadium in Madrid, Spain came before it.

On the occasion of that strange contest, French social theorist Jean Baudrillard observed that “thousands of fans besieged the stadium but no one got in” and that this punishment of unruly soccer fans did much to –

“exemplify the terroristic hyperrealism of our world, a world where the ‘real’ event occurs in a vacuum, strippedof its context, visible only from afar, televisually.”

Maybe, Baudrillard wryly predicted, the game in Madrid was a harbinger of a future where no one would actually participate in such happenings “but everyone will have received an image of them.”

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Grand Canyon in the Crosshairs? Risky Mega-Development Moves Forward

May 4, 2015 by Source

Grand Canyon South Rim

‘The Forest Service is paving the way for foreign investors to exploit America’s most treasured natural landmark all to turn a profit,’ says Earthjustice

Deirdre Fulton / Common Dreams

The U.S. Forest Service is considering approval for a mega-development on the outskirts of the majestic Grand Canyon—a project the superintendent of Grand Canyon National Park has called one of the greatest threats in the 96-year history of the park.

The Stilo Development Group, based in Italy, has proposed a sprawling urban development for the tiny town of Tusayan, near the southern edge of the Grand Canyon, which would include more than 2,100 housing units and 3 million square feet of retail space along with hotels, a spa, and conference center.

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Tide Turning Against Plastic Microbeads in Toiletries

May 4, 2015 by Source

By Sarah “Steve” Mosko / Boogie Green

Microbead products and alternativesThere are signs that the era where plastic microbeads from personal care products pollute bodies of water worldwide and aquatic food chains might be drawing to a close.

Microbeads are miniscule spheres of plastic commonly added as abrasives to personal care products like face scrubs, shower gels and toothpaste. They’re designed to wash down the drain, but because of their small size, they escape sewage treatment plants. Once discharged into oceans, rivers or lakes or onto land, they’re virtually impossible to clean up.

They’re typically made of polyethylene or polypropylene and do not biodegrade within any meaningful human time scale, especially in aquatic environments.

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News From the Shores of Ocean Beach and Point Loma

May 1, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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People’s Co-op Members Elect 2 Board Members

Plumber Ignites Fire in Cape May Apartment

Police Fatally Shoot Man With Knife in Midway Area

Innocence Project Stages Another Walk to OB from Downtown

Parents of OB 5-Year-Old Battling Leukemia Needs Help

4 Unit Apartment in Midway Sells for $1 Million+

Teen Pulls Elderly Couple From Mini-Van After Crash in Loma Portal

… AND MORE … COME INSIDE….

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Public Scrutiny Turns Civic San Diego Board Testy and Defensive

May 1, 2015 by Anna Daniels

Civic’s Community Benefit Policy enactment a study in #democracyfail

civicsd board meeting

By Anna Daniels / San Diego Free Press

The Civic San Diego Board of Directors and President Reese Jarrett scored a victory at their April 29 board meeting. Civic San Diego, which describes itself as a “city-owned non-profit that is the entrepreneurial development partner for targeted urban neighborhoods” approved its own Community Benefit Policy with one dissenting vote after two hours of board discussion and public testimony.

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Unprecedented Sell-Off of Ocean Beach Apartments Over Last 4 Years

April 30, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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According to a review of OB Rag records, there’s been an unprecedented sell-off of apartments in Ocean Beach over the last 4 years. This has included the transfer of nearly $38 millions and involving nearly 160 units.

Since the summer of 2011, there’s been nearly 20 of these transactions – the sale and purchase of multiple-unit properties in the OB village. There’s been at least ten since January 2014 and 3 this year already.

In particular, what’s been called “the War Zone” over the years – northwest Ocean Beach, has been especially busy.

Here’s what we found since August 2011, …

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Civic San Diego: The Kiss of Death for San Diego Neighborhoods

April 29, 2015 by Source

angry crowdBy Norma Damashek

The city of San Diego has first-class universities, first-class biotech companies, first-class ethnic restaurants, first-class theater, first-class engineers, artists, and musicians. Also: Our city has first-class standing as a prototype of community-based planning.

Who would have guessed that during the heady years of the 1960s while the Pump House kids were tripping the waves fantastic at Windansea Beach, other San Diegans – more firmly-grounded and civic-minded – were partnering with City Hall as official members of newly-created community planning groups. The La Jolla community plan was the city’s first. Then the Peninsula plan. Soon came the others.

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Community Budget Alliance Letter to Civic San Diego on Community Benefit Policy

April 29, 2015 by Source

community benefitsEditor Note: The Civic San Diego Board of Directors is meeting today to discuss adoption of their Community Benefit Policy (Item 8).

Dear Civic San Diego Board Members,

In light of the dissolution of the redevelopment agencies, the City of San Diego has a responsibility to establish clear policies and standards for publicly subsidized community economic development. In October 2014, the Public Safety and Livable Neighborhoods committee directed Civic San Diego to conduct a community outreach process.

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Fined by China, Qualcomm Losing Chip Business as CEO Departs

April 29, 2015 by John Lawrence

Qualcomm Sucks Up To China

Qualcomm1By John Lawrence

Qualcomm has been fined almost a billion dollars by China for violating its anti-monopoly law. China has the world’s most internet users and the largest smartphone market so Qualcomm has to tread gingerly with the authorities there since it doesn’t want to be booted out of the world’s most lucrative market.

The fine will knock 58 cents a share off Qualcomm’s earnings for the year. Qualcomm CEO Steven M. Mollenkopf thinks paying the fine will make Qualcomm better positioned to cash in in the future.

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How Communities Can Benefit from Private Development in California

April 28, 2015 by Source

south san franciscoBy Murtaza H. Baxamusa, Ph.D., AICP / San Diego UrbDeZine.

There is a building boom across California, but many communities have been historically left behind. Property tax increment has served as a planning and investment tool to provide public benefits such as affordable housing, good jobs and neighborhood amenities.

However, with the end of redevelopment, cash-poor cities across California are exploring innovative strategies to fund public benefits. One such strategy is to partner with developers for community benefits in exchange for planning and development rights.

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9-Unit Apartment on Saratoga Sold for $2 Million

April 27, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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A 9-unit apartment complex on the 5000 block of Saratoga Avenue has been sold for a cool $2 million cash just recently.

The complex located at 5076 Saratoga Avenue in Ocean Beach consists of a 2-story building with 6 one-bedroom units and 3 two-bedroom units. There’s approximately 5,730 “rentable” square feet on the 7,000 square foot lot, assessor’s parcel number 448-101-04-00.

The buyer of the property was Mills Trust, with Marcie Matassa listed as trustee, with an address of 8517 Lubec St., Downey 90240.

Gordon Pettus and Gail Pettus, as trustees of a trust, were the sellers.

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Upper Voltaire Project to Begin Construction of 28 “Quality” Townhomes

April 27, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Some in OB and Point Loma remember it as the old Domino’s Pizza place on upper Voltaire Street. Others knew as a surf-board making business.

However the place is remembered, changes have begun which will result in the construction of 28 2-and 3-story townhomes along Voltaire, east of Catalina Boulevard. Called the “Upper Voltaire Mixed Use” project, demolition has begun on the one-acre triangular-shaped piece of Point Loma that overlooks Nimitz Boulevard.

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Is San Diego Up for the Challenge of Marrying Environmental and Economic Justice?

April 27, 2015 by Jim Miller

“A beautifully sustainable city that is the playground of the rich doesn’t work for us.”

one new yorkBy Jim Miller

Some of the best political news in America in quite a while happened last week in New York City. While much of the country is still under the sway of the climate-change denying right and thus fiddling while the world burns, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio came out with precisely the kind of bold, visionary plan that we need to address not just the existential threat of climate change but the equally pressing and dangerous trend toward deepening economic inequality.

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Civic San Diego Willing to Bury City Rep on Meaningless Advisory Board

April 23, 2015 by Anna Daniels

nothingburgerEx-officio City staff on New Market Tax Credit Advisory Board = CivicSD’s latest nothingburger

By Anna Daniels

The latest news about Civic San Diego has been appearing courtesy of Lyle Moran in The Daily Transcript, which unfortunately operates behind a pay wall.

Moran reports on the unexpected departure of CivicSD CFO and COO Andrew Phillips, who couldn’t pass up the opportunity to accept an invitation to work at the western division of Jones Lang LaSalle and CivicSD board member Cynthia Morgan, an attorney at Higgs Fletcher and Mack and new mother who wants to spend more time on her career and with her family.

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Bakery and Brewery on Voltaire Street in OB

April 23, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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“CJ’s Catering” Opens Bakery

Finally, those with a sweet tooth can find relief on Voltaire Street in OB. CJ’s Catering has opened its doors after months of anticipation by locals and fans. Right there in the middle of the 4800 block, in the former Stephanie’s vegan bakery, CJ has moved his operation …. MORE INSIDE –

Brewery Coming in on Corner of Voltaire and Cable?

There’s more than rumors that a brewery is coming in at the former unsuccessful dog-wash place on the corner of Voltaire and Cable. … MORE INSIDE

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Sunset Cliffs and Voltaire – Plaza Construction Takes Off

April 22, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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After months – and even years – of delays the construction at the intersection of Voltaire Street and Sunset Cliffs has taken off. Over the last few days, the steel has arrived. I-beams and cross-beams have been installed – and you can now see the basic shape of the building.

It’s Sunset Plaza – coming to the busy intersection – thanks to World Oil, the owner of the lot.

Over the years, World Oil, had made numerous attempts to bring a gas station to the corner, but the concept had been opposed by the community. Several large town hall meetings at the OB Rec Center were held on the gas station with hundreds in attendance coming out vocally against it; the OB Planning Board opposed it a number of times; and the city determined that the lot wasn’t large enough for the station.

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Green Capitalism: A Contradiction in Terms?

April 22, 2015 by John Lawrence

Part 6 – Conversion to Renewable Energy is Going Too Slow to Avoid Catastrophe

naomi quoteBy John Lawrence

This is the sixth and final part of this series. Part 5 can be found here.

Naomi Klein, author of This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs The Climate, debunks the idea that all we have to do is to cooperate with the extractive industries and urge them to get greener. We do not have to go to extremes, but can phase in renewable sources of energy gradually. The gradualist approach is the essence of green capitalism. This will not work Klein says:

[The] bottom line is … our economic system and our planetary system are now at war.

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Flipping Apartments and Making Millions Off Ocean Beach

April 21, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Somebody’s got to do it, right? Somebody’s got to come in to OB and flip some apartments and make some millions. Right?

That’s exactly what the owners of the 22-unit apartment complex at 5041-43 Santa Monica Avenue believe. They came in about 2 years ago, bought them for $4.75 million, did some improvements ( a lot they claim) and have now turned around and are trying to sell the place for $7.6 million.

That’s almost $3 million. In 2 years – not bad. Of course, they spent a bunch in the improvements. We reported on the original sale back in September 2013. Here’s what we said then:…

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Mission Valley Watch

April 21, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Somebody needs to be watching Mission Valley – the long congested corridor that is literally the heart of San Diego. And certainly, it’s not the City of San Diego that is watching Mission Valley – or rather watching out for it. And certainly, it’s not the major mainstream media in this town either that are watching Mission Valley – with one HUGE exception: the nearly-exclusive and obsessive focus on the Qualcomm Stadium site.

Yet Mission Valley certainly does need to be watched because the construction projects that are being built and are in the pipeline to being built in the next few years will quite double – or even triple – the current population of the Valley of 20,000 San Diegans. The projects will double the number of housing units that are already there. The problem with this is …

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