Our reporting relies on your support. Contribute today! 

Help us reach our goal of $250,000. The countdown is on!

Weight of underwater camera: 1,300 pounds. Hours spent in the ocean: 360. Weight of surrounding sharks: 3,000 pounds each.

Number of crew members eaten by sharks while filming in the ocean: Zero.

Those are good numbers for local nature documentary maker Howard Hall, whose new IMAX movie is playing in Balboa Park.

In our weekly Q&A feature, Hall talks about the underwater life, global warming’s effects and why a camera keeps sharks at bay.

What we have here may be a failure to remunerate.

Our reporting suggests that the state might not be getting an accurate account of private money that’s available to help build a new downtown library. At issue: a few million dollars.

Meanwhile, one city council member is ready for the next step in the process toward a combination charter school/downtown library, while another has questions.

The summer looks sunny for the Arena biotech firm, which is recovering nicely from a rough spring that rocked its stock. The company’s CEO talks about what went right over the last few weeks, particularly regarding a weight-loss drug.

Also in economy news, the local unemployment rate rose to 9.4 percent last month, but it’s still less than the state rate.

And in sports, basketball’s Bill Walton is one more proud father on the local sports scene.

Now, a quick look back at the week on voiceofsandiego.org.

The Coffee Collection (If you missed these good reads, check them out over a cup of java):

The W Stands for Wipeout: “The market for hotel and office and retail space in San Diego in general is in deep trouble,” and we’ve got the proof in this story about the bad times represented by the W Hotel’s failure to pay its mortgage.

Study Thyself: San Diego teenagers are learning to perform research on each other and compile the results, but their biggest challenge may be getting anyone in power to pay attention.

Term of the Week: Terminal leave.

If someone says you have “terminal leave,” don’t be alarmed. You’re not going to shuffle off this mortal coil. In fact, you might be in luck if you work in the city of San Diego.

Terminal leave refers to the period when laid-off employees aren’t working for the city anymore but still show up on the payroll. And that’s not all: they also get holiday pay.

Nice non-work if you can get it.

Quote of the Week: “Pelts of stingrays” — a source of the upholstery that lines the two front desks at Sè San Diego, a luxury hotel that opened days before the debut of 2009, thought to be the worst year for hotels in at least seven decades.

Someone’s sure getting stung.

Finally, an important correction: A story Thursday claimed that the district was admitting that the construction of the dual school-library downtown might either delay or scuttle other building projects promised with the passage of Proposition S — the school bond measure. This is not true.

See you next week.

— RANDY DOTINGA

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.