The San Diego economy has an hourglass figure, but it’s not the type of thing anybody would want to brag about.

We have lots of people who inhabit the higher end of the income spectrum and lots of people at the lower end. But the middle class, which often seems to be the only segment of society that politicians are about, is on the smaller side. Now, city officials are working on a plan to shape a better future by making us a bit less curvy.

VOSD reporter Andrew Keatts explains what they’re up to.

The idea is to focus on certain sectors of the economy to get more businesses to set up shop in poor neighborhoods.

Water War Escalates

Here’s the Wall Street Journal on the water war between the Metropolitan Water District and the San Diego County Water Authority. You might consider reviewing our five takeaways from last year if you want to catch up on what’s going on and why it matters.

On Second Thought, Shipyard Workers Say, Never Mind

“In an abrupt about-face, shipyard union workers have joined environmental groups in supporting the contested Barrio Logan Community Plan update,” CityBeat reports.

This is indeed quite a turnaround for folks who’d previously worried that the compromise blueprint for the neighborhood would kill jobs. What happened? One union leader says workers were simply misled about the impact of the plan. But another says labor types are angry over contract negotiations.

A Boon for Nosy Parkers

If you like knowing what important people make, you’re going to love this: The U-T has published the salaries of 70 local nonprofit leaders who make more than $200,000.

The story accompanying the numbers doesn’t make it clear why $200,000 is an important salary point. But it does include some eyebrow-raising numbers.

For example, the highest paid CEO of them all worked for a firm you may have never heard of — West Health Institute. He made $1.7 million to run an organization with a $5.1 million budget.

There’s something called the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission with an $9 million budget and a CEO who makes $237,000. And the CEO of the local Goodwill operation made more than $300,000 last year. Then again, he runs a $39 million operation.

Update from the Car vs. Bike War

There must be people who’ve discovered a middle ground between the zealots on both sides of the simmering battle between drivers and cyclists in American cities. If there are, we’re not hearing much from them.

Case in point: A seemingly growing resistance among conservatives to cycling activists. A writer for The Boston Globe finds that “the bicycle is emerging as a new conservative front in the culture wars.”

The movement, if there is one, has an unlikely major voice: the mayor of Toronto. Yes, that guy.

For more about how the biking movement is gaining a voice in San Diego, check our new Q&A interview with a local leader.

Quick News Hits

• Loren Nancarrow, the local TV news anchor, has brain cancer and doesn’t expect to live much longer. In a new blog post, Nancarrow ponders what comes next and “when is enough, enough?”

• South Bay residents are gearing up to oppose a planned natural gas power plant in the Otay Mesa area, KPBS reports. Federal officials are taking testimony about the proposal this week.

• There’s talk of dumping those expensive legislative special elections that crop up when an assemblyperson or state senator leaves office during their term.

• The Reader tries to figure out what’s going on with a picnic-table-based airport public art project that’s estimated to cost $118,000.

• More gun show awkwardness.

Jury Lounge selfie, everybody!

• Great news for fans of the Northwest: Next year, Southwest Airlines (at last!) will offer non-stop flights to Portland and Seattle. No more cooling our heels in places like the San Jose airport.

They’re also adding non-stops to New Orleans and Orlando. Here’s the Wall Street Journal on the full expansion.

Now if they’d just upgrade the peanuts that they actually introduced to the airline world. Can we get some Brazil nuts up in here?

Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego and vice president of the American Society of Journalists & Authors. Please contact him directly at and follow him on Twitter:

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Randy Dotinga

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

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