That was the San Diego pension board’s message yesterday when it overwhelmingly rejected a plan to revise accounting rules in order to save now (to the tune of $30 million) and pay later.

City officials fear they may have to cut 300-400 jobs as a result. But others say the board’s decision protects the pension plan and prevents the city from kicking its financial reckoning down the road.

Meanwhile, the top city pension administrator launched a blistering attack on those who thought the board had no business considering the revision idea.

In other news:

  • Drip, drip, drip. The hot water engulfing local airport board chairman Bob Watkins continues to rise: Mayor Jerry Sanders now wants to ask him questions, and the U-T says Watkins has hired an attorney to advise him about questions we raised this week.

    “I’m as puzzled as you,” he told the paper when asked about conflict-of-interest disclosure omissions.

  • Gen-Probe must be doing something right. The biotech firm, which is responsible for testing much of the world’s blood supply, hasn’t had to lay off a single employee during the economic downtown.

    In this weekend’s Q&A, new CEO Carl Hull talks about the hazards of health-care reform, the safety of the blood supply and plans to revolutionize prostate-cancer screening. (Not a moment too soon, I say.)

  • Up, down, down. Sound like yo-yo dieting? Close. The stock of local drugmaker Arena Pharmaceuticals wobbled amid news about a weight-loss drug. But is Wall Street missing something?
  • Now, a history flashback. Today’s the 90th anniversary of the first time a president ever spoke to a crowd through a microphone and loudspeakers. And there’s more that makes Woodrow Wilson’s 1919 visit to San Diego worth remembering: 50,000 people, an azalea flower, Balboa Park, the “first female president” and World War II all fit into our story of that day.

    (Personal trivia: My twin great-aunts, who turned 96 this year, were born shortly after Wilson took office. Their middle names: “Woodrow” and “Wilson.”)

  • These days, a paper cut is about the biggest physical threat facing local reporters on the job. Not so in the past, at least to judge by a 1937 national magazine ad uncovered this week by local blogger David Poller.

    “Well of the Padres His Living Tomb,” blares the ad headline. “San Diego Reporter, Weak from Loss of Blood, Cheats Death in Ancient Shaft.”

    The shaft in question wasn’t in Egypt or China. No, the reporter nearly met with disaster in a “death-trap” at the San Diego Mission, of all places. “They would have pulled a corpse out of that well if it hadn’t been for the DATED Eveready batteries in my flashlight,” the reporter says in the ad for, you guessed it, “fresh” (and dated!) Eveready batteries.

Now to the more recent past — the last seven days — and the Coffee Collection:

  • Flag on the Play: Our NFL team won its first game of the season, but it was a messy affair. Even more messy: the continuing battle over keeping the Chargers here.
  • If We’ll Rise From the Ashes, Might As Well Call Us Phoenix: Who says Mayor Sanders doesn’t have a vision? Build, build, build, he urged in a speech this week. But critics fear his real message is “Solvency, schmolvency.”
  • Quote of the Week: “Edifice Complex.” — Letter writer Richard Rider’s diagnosis of an affliction affecting Mayor Sanders. Maybe some penicillin will clear that right up.


Dagny Salas was web editor at Voice of San Diego from 2010 to 2013. She was an investigative fellow at VOSD from 2009 to 2010.

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