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Run down the list of the hundreds of lobbyists registered with the city of San Diego, and you’ll find representatives speaking for a huge array of industries and groups: developers, schools, unions, hospitals, and even a shop that offers bike and kayak tours.
But you won’t see Connect, the tech industry’s most prominent organization. “That is telling,” its CEO tells us. “It shows how little cause we’ve had to be down there.”
He means down at City Hall, where San Diego’s $10 billion biotech and high-tech industries rarely tread. Instead, nearly all of their attention is directed at Washington, D.C., the source of so much industry funding and regulation.
We look at the debate over tech’s involvement at a time when City Hall is making a raft of long-term investments.
In other news:
- You might have known it as “homeroom” or “advisory.” Either way, the first class of the day at middle or high school has often been a dead zone: a time to listen to announcements, stare at the ceiling or yak with students whose last name begins with the same letter as yours.
In middle schools, the concept evolved to become a few minutes when students could talk about issues they’re facing. Now, Marston Middle School, in the San Diego neighborhood of Clairemont, is embracing another strategy: It’s making advisory longer and devoting the time to giving to students an academic boost.
- Recently, San Diego’s city attorney said the city could freeze out its employees when it puts services up for bid. In other words, he thinks the city doesn’t need to look inward when it outsources.
Mayor Jerry Sanders refused to rule out outsourcing. But City Council has an important voice in the debate, too. To find out where the eight council members stand, we sent them a survey. If you’re scoring at home, we received “one ‘yes,’ two ‘no’s’ and two others who offered explanations instead of straight yes or no answers.”
Three council members didn’t respond.
- The Mayor’s Office wants to hear how you’d solve the city’s budget mess. It will even post some of the suggestions.
We tried the same approach not too long ago and got some thought-provoking answers.
Also on our site today: San Diego has a new fire chief. We look back at the job titles of folks we’ve profiled in our monthly People at Work series and find an excuse to visit Sesame Street. We’ve got a slideshow of action-packed photos from last night’s not-so-victory-packed Chargers game. And we have an entry in our best/worst school worksheets contest. You can still enter, and there are fabulous(ish) prizes!
Elsewhere: Councilman Carl DeMaio says the city could save $63 million from its day-to-day budget over the next five years by shelving the downtown library, a challenge to boosters who claim the project won’t impact the city’s budget. (U-T)
The Navy Times looks at internal defense documents and chronicles how “optimal manning” — “slowly whittling the number of bodies in each command throughout the fleet” — is hurting the Navy.
The story quotes the commanding officer of the destroyer Decatur, which left San Diego last spring: “I feel like we are tactically ready and prepared, but there’s a price — and it’s on the backs of sailors. I think we are at the right number. It’s how resilient are you. If someone gets hurt, I don’t have a bench.”
His ship is designed for about 330, but has a crew of 239.
Hmm. That’s a lot of empty space. Hey, isn’t San Diego looking for somewhere to shelter homeless people? Oh wait: this idea has already come up.