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Yesterday brought bad news for city residents who sell or buy medical marijuana: the City Council voted for strong new regulations on marijuana dispensaries that may leave the San Diego without any within city limits for months, reports the Union-Tribune.

Those that do want to restart their operations may need to have $35,000 stocked away to pay for the permitting process, which could take a year.

More than 165 dispensaries will have to shut down until the permits are granted. After that they won’t be able to operate near schools, churches, playgrounds, libraries, and other places, greatly hampering their existence, especially since they can’t open in residential areas.

No Pension Ballot Measure Quite Yet

There’s no ballot petition drive to revise the city’s finances by shifting many city workers from a pension system to 401(k) plans quite yet, the U-T reports. Negotiations are still underway.

It’s Not SDG&E’s Stash

The U-T editorial board wrote in an editorial that about $22 million is available to clean up the mess left by “an embarrassing white elephant,” the South Bay Power Plant, with the money coming courtesy of former operator SDG&E. But San Diego Fact Check finds that the statement is false.

While the port has $22 million in a trust, the money isn’t from SDG&E. This matters because there’s still debate over SDGE’s responsibilities, if any, to take care of contamination. The U-T hadn’t corrected the story as of yesterday evening.

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A Settlement at a Local Landmark

It sounds like a fantastic deal: a condo at the beautiful former El Cortez hotel for just a bit more than $200,000. But there’s more (or perhaps less) to the price than meets the eye: as we’ve reported over the years, the building has been plagued by alleged construction problems, and its homeowners have sued.

Now, the U-T says the homeowners have settled their five-year-long lawsuit for $6.4 million.

Do You Get Paychecks from Bridgepoint?

On the heels of last week’s story about the rapid and controversial rise of the Bridgepoint Education company, our reporters are looking for current or former students and employees. They also talked about the matter on KPBS’s “These Days.”

Official Urges Ballot Purge

The county’s top election official says it’s time for the taxpayer to stop shelling out dough so ballots can include races for obscure non-governmental posts. Along with some of her colleagues statewide, she wants the state to stop forcing ballots to include elections for posts on the county central committees of political parties. “It’s as if we were running the Kiwanis Club election,” she told The Sacramento Bee.

This isn’t a minor matter in Election World: Last June, the hopefuls who ran for these offices made up 160 of 240 total candidates on ballots in the county.

Jobs on the Upswing

The local employment picture is improving, although Rich Toscano has his usual caveat (it’s like he’s permanently attached to one): “The recovery in employment is still quite weak, but hopefully it is in the process of becoming less so.”


Check out the latest batch of aerial photos. One looks down on a whole lot — as a public service, I refuse to call it “a bunch” — of Dole Banana trailers at the 10th Avenue Marine Terminal. It turns out (who knew?) that every Dole banana eaten west of the Rockies goes through San Diego. We’ve also got a view of downtown from near the airport. Hello, teeny people! Up here!

State Workers and Bloomers

Over on television, Fact Check TV examines claims about state workers and train safety on the Coaster, while Behind the Scene TV checks out the costume preparation for a play that features Victorian-era bloomers and corsets and a type of technology that’s never lost its, um, buzz.

Also in arts, we check to see how local artists have fared after winning the local Art Prize. We’ve included images of some of their work, including a psychedelic “glow room” that needs to be in my house, now now now.

The Only Two Left

The Padres are turning 75, and the NCT checks in with the last two surviving players from the debut 1936 roster. The Pacific Coast League wasn’t a bad place to start your career, even though it was in the minor leagues: “Because there were only 16 big-league teams, and none west of St. Louis, baseball talent was more spread out, and some players even chose the PCL over the majors. The weather was better, and the league offered a relaxed vibe that included schedules as long as 200 games and stopovers in cities that lasted a week.”

The NCT also talks to Bill Swank, the preeminent local baseball historian and the subject of a 2009 Q&A in our pages.

The More You Know

It has been brought to my attention that there are at least two websites covering La Mesa: Patch and This information is helpful. You may notice, as I did for the first time, that the first four letters of La Mesa’s name are “lame.”

Make a note for the next time you hang out with La Mesans. They’ll surely appreciate your bringing it up!

Please contact Randy Dotinga directly at and follow him on Twitter:

Randy Dotinga

Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego. Please contact him directly at

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