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We reported last week that San Diego County’s government had included incorrect information in an application for an award it won in 2006 from the National Association of Counties.

The award will stand.

In its application for a 2006 achievement award from the National Association of Counties, a Washington, D.C.-based lobbying organization, the county’s Air Pollution Control District claimed that a new website it designed for children was receiving 2,000 hits per month.

But a spokeswoman for the district admitted last week that the site had never received the number of visits it had claimed. The site is getting approximately 50 hits per month, not 2,000.

Jacqueline Byers, director of research at the National Association of Counties, said she wasn’t happy that the county had misrepresented the figure. But she said the award would stand.

“That really didn’t weigh a lot in the decision to give them an award,” she said. “It’s the content and the innovation. They could have told us it was 50 hits and they still would’ve gotten the award anticipating they would possibly grow.”

Byers said her association does not independently verify the information contained in applications. The association requires each jurisdiction’s chief elected official to sign award applications.

“I don’t know what to say about that,” Byers said. “We take everything on face value when it comes to us.”

ROB DAVIS

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