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Will the San Diego City Council put Mayor Jerry Sanders in a corner?

Stay tuned. Today, the council will consider how to move forward with outsourcing of city services, and there’s potential for a major showdown that sets a precedent for how the city resolves its labor disputes in the future.

At stake are the city’s long-delayed plans to allow outside companies to bid on city services.

In other news:

  • Right now, the city of San Diego slightly raises water rates — people pay more per gallon, essentially — as people use more water.

    Up in the Irvine area, rates go up — as much as eight times higher — if people use more than water officials have allotted for them.

    Back here, city water officials have said the Irvine system is a fair way to get people to use less. But they’ve brushed it off as terribly complicated to implement (not true) and a possible legal morass (not so, attorneys told us).

    Now the Mayor’s Office says the city is looking into the Irvine system, even though a top water official recently said it isn’t.

    So where does this leave the city? In the same place before: exploring options with no deadline.

  • Our weeklong virtual panel discussion on water rates continues: Commenters have weighed in, and now our panelists are responding to them and each other.
  • In the first in a series examining potentially life-changing products under development locally, we check in with Sangart, which is developing a blood substitute. The challenge is to find a way to replicate one of the things that blood does so well: move oxygen through the body.

    Another hurdle will be figuring out how to test a blood substitute. A fake blood product called Polyheme was tested on unknowing trauma patients in San Diego and elsewhere a few years ago, resulting in controversy.

  • The city auditor is none too pleased with how the street division tracks the condition of San Diego streets, saying almost half its information is outdated. Is the city doing a good job of maintaining streets around you? Let us know.
  • The U-T lost 9.5 percent of its daily circulation over the past year, while the NCT, which has stopped circulating in some areas, lost 19 percent.

    Also on our site:

  • We’ve found a great source for statistics about San Diego in the most unlikely of places. Ken Jones, the 90-year-old founder of KPBS, has died. And the federal wildlife officials will reconsider whether two local species of butterfly should be considered as worthy of consideration as endangered species.

    Elsewhere:

  • San Diego has a confirmed site for its downtown winter homeless shelter. It’s in East Village at the same place as last year and will open by Thanksgiving. (CityBeat)
  • A new report says San Diego rents are tied with those in Boston as the second most expensive in the country. San Francisco is first. (Boston Herald)

    If that isn’t bad enough, we continue to hear from people with horror stories about their house-hunting efforts.

  • San Diego’s Scientology chapter is at the center of a high-profile defection from the church. (ABC News)
  • The Padres introduced the man who will try to put together a competitive baseball team with one of the smallest budgets around, new general manager Jed Hoyer, who is 35. (UT)
  • Finally, you may recall the kerfuffle in the Morning Report last week when an L.A. food critic bashed San Diego’s burritos.

    Now we have a homegrown naysayer: a U-T writer talking about Jewish delis says “our few delis range from mediocre to just OK, on a good day.”

    Anyone care to rebut? Or is he right? Can you get good corned beef in this town?

— RANDY DOTINGA

Dagny Salas

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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