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You could call it a “Zombieland” moment: A San Diego fix-it ticket from 1990 has returned from the dead to haunt a Seattle man.

He says he fixed his headlight and paid the $72 fine. But he doesn’t have proof, and the county court system says he did no such thing. It wants him to pay up $322 — penalty included — pronto.

Unless he finds a sympathetic judge, the man will have to cough up the dough or watch his credit rating go down the drain. To the court system, old debt is no different than new debt. And it’s trying to track down thousands of people with fines dating back a decade or more.

In other news:

  • The city of Houston is infamous for not having any zoning. Could such a thing happen here? It essentially already has in San Diego’s Barrio Logan neighborhood, where homes are nestled right up against industrial businesses.

    For decades, residents have complained about loose land-use regulations they say have hurt their neighborhood. Now, a new community plan is in the works, but it’s dividing residents and businesses.

  • We’re asking readers about ways to resolve the city’s pending $179 million deficit, and you’re responding.
  • Also on our site: San Diego school officials on Tuesday delayed modernizing schools for up to four years. A top school official is leaving, and another candidate is in the running for school board. This one opposes rifle ranges on campus. Wait, what? Yes, San Diego schools had rifle ranges, but they’re banned now.

    California Western School of Law’s Innocence project, which we profiled recently, watched one of its clients walk free yesterday.

    Federal prosecutors are dropping a case involving an excavation project in Lemon Grove.

  • Elsewhere: Wanna pump quarters into that parking meter on Sundays and until 11 p.m. each night? Me neither. But the San Diego City Council is considering the idea of longer meter hours. (U-T)

    Los Angeles developers plan to pitch some woo at the Chargers, among other NFL teams. (UT)

    Escondido officials want to perform an intervention on the long-troubled California Center for the Arts, Escondido, which has lost money 13 of its 15 years. But the center board’s president doesn’t want it to go into rehab.

    And finally, Men’s Journal calls San Diego the top “beer town” in the country, with a whopping 33 breweries. The magazine also loves the taverns on 30th Street in North Park and South Park, which its lauds as “easily the nation’s best beer boulevard.”

    Question: In San Diego, the north-south numbered roads west of Park Boulevard are known as avenues (First Avenue, Tenth Avenue, etc.). But to the east, they lose the avenue designation, like the suds-soaked 30th Street.

    Were city planners enjoying too many intoxicating beverages back in the day, or is there a good reason for this difference? Send me facts, theories or wild guesses.

— RANDY DOTINGA

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