The San Diego Unified Port District looks like it’s still a little freaked out about the ballot measure from November that would have put a huge deck on top of the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal. The deck would have allowed, perhaps, something like a football stadium to be constructed on top of existing port cargo operations.

The measure, obviously, ate dirt. The developers of this dreamy construction project couldn’t even get the builders’ interest groups on board. And the developers themselves started fighting. Voters ended up sending the measure back to the cooks like a hamburger with a smushed cockroach on top.

But did the measure actually draw a road map for other groups that might have a better plan to put forward to voters?

The port doesn’t want to find out. It’s going to try to make it impossible to do a ballot measure like that in the future.

The port held its annual luncheon and bid farewell to outgoing Chairman Michael Bixler today. And in his remarks, Bixler made a bit of news.

He discussed the frustrating debacle the port had with the developers who wanted to build the deck on top of the port’s most prized property.

“We are pursuing legislation to ensure none of us have to go through this again,” he said.

And later, when the port’s vice president, Irene McCormack, made her own statement, she wondered aloud how anyone could have ever hoped to put a Chargers football stadium on the Tenth Avenue property.

“Voters made sure it didn’t happen in November. With your help, we’ll make sure it never happens,” McCormack said.

Bring it on, Chargers.

What would such legislation entail? Since the port is actually the local administrator of state tidelands, the theory is that those lands should only be manipulated by a ballot measure on the state level, if at all.

This will be something to watch.

After all, it wasn’t inconceivable to imagine the ballot measure in November doing better than it did. Had it been proposed by a bit more competent of a group, with a bit more support from, say, a successful and newly popular football team, it could have been triumphant.

Very interesting.


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