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With an eye on increasing the number of affordable (or affordable-adjacent) housing units in San Diego, the city has boosted the fee that developers pay when they build. Those developers, who have some allies in the political world, want to stop the fee increase.
Both sides are busily throwing around claims. We ran a couple of them through San Diego Fact Check and found that one deserves a “Mostly True” verdict while another is 100 percent pure “Huckster Propaganda.” You can read more here.
The Mostly True claim comes from former Mayor Jerry Sanders, who claims that over the past two years, “our coalition put forward more than 20 alternative ways to fund subsidized housing and make it more affordable to build.” The claim isn’t entirely true because there’s nuance to consider.
As for the “Hucker Propaganda” claim, that humdinger comes from interim mayor Todd Gloria, who said, “the people who are now vehemently opposed to it were given two years by the city to come up with another proposal. They brought forward nothing.”
That’s not true. But a spokesman for Gloria said he was speaking figuratively: “This is a reasonable way to talk,” adding that the offered options just weren’t “politically realistic.”
What We Need Is a Hero. Or Do We?
Cindy Marten would like you to know that she doesn’t wear a cape or leap schoolhouses in a single bound.
Yes, she may be among the most surprising superintendents in San Diego Unified history; she went from principal to the top with no stop in between. And yes, school chiefs are celebrities these days. But as we’ve pressed Marten to define her role and expectations for her performance, she’s now telling us that she’s no hero out to save the day.
“The idea of saving anyone from anything is disempowering, disenfranchising and kind of arrogant, actually,” she said. “People need to be supported, empowered, guided, led, understood, believed in, honored, listened to — not saved.”
She may be dancing around definitions, as educators — and journalists — like to do when uncomfortable questions come along. But her words do help give us a better picture of how she operates.
• Education reform advocate and author Diane Ravich says San Diego Unified is “the best urban district in the nation.” Why? “I say this not based on test scores but on the climate for teaching and learning that I have observed in San Diego.”
Dance Dance Revolution, San Diego Style
The Culture Report , our compilation of news about all things artistic and cultural, leads off with news about movers-and-shakers on the local dance scene. We also offer news about photography, visual art, experimental music, opera, comedy, float design and one of the creepiest plays to ever hit a stage.
More Remembrances of Jerry Coleman
VOSD sports blogger John Gennaro remembers Padres broadcaster Jerry Coleman, the war hero, onetime team manager and former Yankees star.
Meanwhile, Keith Olbermann, the loudmouth commentator, is drawing praise for his lovely remembrance of Coleman as a true role model. And while it’s a bit tacky to spend too much time remembering Coleman’s verbal flubs, which are surely part of every sportscaster’s career, I can’t help but mention this one that a reader sent along: “Rich Folkers is throwing up in the bullpen … ”
Quick News Hits
• The remaining two mayoral candidates are picking up more endorsements, the U-T reports.
• A former Poway defense contractor convicted in the bribery scandal that also brought down ex-Rep. Randy “Duke” Cunningham wants a new trial, the U-T reports.
• How are the gray whales doing? That’s a rude question! Oh wait, we’re not talking about middle-aged guys with paunches and non-age-defying hair. (Whew.) The other kind — the ocean dwellers — have been seen in record numbers along the California coast, the AP reports. They’re migrating south from the Bering Sea (!) to the waters off Baja California.
• Speaking of animals, social media buzzed about the Morning Report’s mention of a nifty photo of a cheetah with a bag on its head at San Diego Zoo Safari Park.
There was talk (by me, mainly) about how the new name for the Escondido-area creature emporium — formerly known as the San Diego Wild Animal Park — is mighty clunky. I also mentioned that VOSD confirmed via Fact Check that that the park’s former Wgasa Bush Line tram system was indeed named after the initials of the phrase “Who Gives a [Bad Word] Anyway?” Wgasa is most definitely not a native African word.
A reader pointed out that there’s a street called Wgasa Place in the city of Temecula. Huh! Would you like to tell them this fun fact about the word’s origins, or should I?
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 firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter: twitter.com/rdotinga.