The Morning Report
Get the news and information you need to take on the day.
Kelly Granfield coordinates San Diego High School of Business’ Academy of Finance, a place where kids take economics classes, work on resumes and intern at businesses. Granfield does more than that: “She sets up internships and job shadows, ferrets out grants — one helps pay for her time — recruits students and coordinates college trips.”
But, as Emily Alpert reports, she’s in line for a pink slip. “Would we still be a family? Sure,” a colleague says. “But it would never be the same.”
Why would the district (“your services are no longer necessary” were its words) get rid of such a respected and valuable teacher? The answer lies in seniority rules, state budget woes and more than a few ironies. This is, after all, a school with heavy-hitting backers from the business community who, unlike in their own companies, are left helpless on the bench.
In related news, The New York Times Magazine offered a colorful profile of Gov. Jerry Brown (including a cameo from SD schools official Bernie Rhinerson). But it had no particular insight on whether school cuts might be avoided.
City Attorney’s Scram Message on Redistricting
After a fuss over a councilwoman’s concern about the doings of a redistricting commission, the city attorney sent the council a message saying its role is to not have a role other than pay for the panel.
Police Haven’t Caught Twitter Bug
So what does he mean? We asked a spokesperson, who says the official was referring to the P.D.’s ability to monitor Twitter. (Editor’s note: That means what? That they know how to get on the Internet? Impressive.)
The Yellow Pages Makes Them See Red
Tired of those phone books piling up on your porch? Seattle has done something about it: it’s the first city in the country to order a strict crackdown on the white pages, the Yellow Pages, the other yellow pages, the other other yellow pages and so on.
Its ordinance went into effect last week, imposing fines of as much as $125 on distributors who ignore requests from residents that they stop delivering phone books. “It’s extremely frustrating to return home someday to find five pounds of yellow pages on your porch that you’re never going to use,” a councilman said.
There’s no sign that such an ordinance is in the works here (state legislators killed a bill that tried something similar), but unwanted phone book delivery is a common complaint, as revealed by the comments on our explainer last year. The phone book industry says you can opt out by using an online site it only recently created, but distributors don’t have to heed it.
Death Penalty Is Losing Steam
The number of annual death sentences handed out in the country has fallen from about 300 in the 1990s to 114 last year, the New Yorker notes, possibly as a result of a variety of factors from lower crime rates to cost to possible second thoughts among jurors.
In California, state statistics show that the number of death sentences hasn’t dipped, at least in 2009 and 2010: there were 29 each year, more than any year since 2000.
A stunning 714 people are on the state’s death row (including 16 women and 41 from San Diego County), but only 13 people have been executed since 1976.
SD TP Distributor Sued
The University of Colorado is suing a toilet paper distributor based in San Diego and a manufacturer after its campus in Boulder suffered from a rash of clogged toilets and overflow damage. The culprit may have been toilet paper that held together and failed to dissolve properly.
“I have a feeling their research and development department will be much stronger after the lawsuit,” a science guru told the local paper. The toilet paper, though, not so much.
Balboa Park on the Big Screen, Incognito
It’s the 70th anniversary of “Citizen Kane,” the “bloated, grotesque, tremendous… influencing and renewing film” that’s never shed its best-movie-of-all-time reputation. Unless you’re paying close attention when you watch it, you might miss Balboa Park’s classic cameo: its buildings stand in for those of the main character’s fictional “Xanadu” estate, which in turn stands in for the real-life Hearst Castle. (For an even earlier look at Balboa Park, check this fun little 1915 film clip.)
Welles made the movie when he was 25, by the way. He could teach the Kentucky Derby crew a few lessons about peaking early but still having a great run.