Ah, money. It can do so much.

Like speed up the time it takes to get a development approved, Andy Keatts discovered after digging into some data from Civic San Diego, the agency that green-lights developments downtown and shepherds the permitting process.

When Civic San Diego began charging developers for permits in July 2012, those developers ended up submitting projects with completed paperwork that hewed to regulations. The money turned out to be a great motivator. Project approval time plummeted.

The charge also ended up weeding out speculators – those who submitted development plans they never intended to complete, so that they could drive up the value of the property.

The Non-Mysterious Pieces of the Drone Industry

Thursday we told you all about how hard it is to figure out the size of San Diego’s drone industry or how much it contributes to the local economy.

But that doesn’t mean we’re completely in the dark. Lisa Halverstadt breaks down just what we do know about the ways in which local companies are involved in the drone industry, and why some businesses are waiting in the wings, hoping to do more with drones if the government changes some rules.

Stop Calling DeMaio’s 2012 Loss ‘Narrow’

The Washington Post is the latest news outlet to refer to Carl DeMaio’s 2012 loss to Bob Finer as “narrow.” See also: The Wall Street Journal and Fox News.

But that seems to be evidence of some selective memory. DeMaio didn’t just fall short. Filner won the 2012 race for mayor by 5 percentage points.

“None of this is to say that DeMaio doesn’t have a good shot – he has a great one,” Sara Libby writes in a new story. He’s a serious enough contender, in fact, “that there’s no need to invent a neck-and-neck mayoral race to explain why he’s got a shot.”

Low Voter Turnout? Great News for the Right

County Registrar Michael Vu tells us anywhere between 38 and 43 percent of registered voters are expected to turn out for the gubernatorial primary June 3. Interest, he said, “seems low for this election,” and turnout could turn up even lower.

Recently, lower turnout along these lines has favored more conservative candidates. “Republican candidates and causes have swept six of the last eight citywide elections when there has been relatively low voter turnout,” Ari Bloomekatz points out in a new post. “And there is little reason to believe the trend will end this time around.”

What We Learned This Week

• Restaurant owners are nervously watching the city’s big minimum-wage hike proposal. They’re scared of the raises they’d have to give to tipped servers, who may already make much more than minimum wage.

• Bumble Bee Seafoods CEO moved the company into Petco Park, and has some strong opinions about GMO labeling and the “Buy American” campaign.

• The candidates for 5th District county supervisor – Oceanside Mayor Jim Wood and Supervisor Bill Horn – both have some baggage.

• Project 25, the three-year program that found housing for the most frequent users of emergency services, is out of money and its fate is uncertain.

• The big environmental impact study that shipbuilders and others opposed to Barrio Logan’s new community plan are using to argue the plan would harm the environment didn’t take into account an important piece of the plan: the fact that it would separate homes and businesses.

• A lot of the wrangling over San Diego Unified teachers’ new contract will take place behind the scenes, but it’s likely to tackle wages and health care, teachers’ job descriptions and class sizes.

Quick News Hits

• ESPN does a deep dive on that mysterious brief disappearance of a former SDSU football player during the NFL combine, and his weird behavior when he re-emerged.

• “Body-worn video cameras are quickly becoming standard-issue for American police,” reports NPR. New Orleans is the latest troubled department to try them out.

As we’ve reported, the cameras do tend to cut down on complaints against the police. But that doesn’t mean SDPD is eager to share the footage the cameras capture.

• The Opera may be alive but it’s going to have many fewer employees. (U-T) And a clarification: Yesterday we said in the Morning Report that opera leaders and former General and Artistic Director Ian Campbell were involved in litigation. No, they’re just lawyered up and trying to find a settlement.

Quote of the Week

“Maybe at home on the phone he can help me, but boots on the ground? Well, he’s in a wheelchair.” – Oceanside Mayor Jim Wood, who’s running for county supervisor, on one reason he parted ways with his former campaign manager.

Sara Libby was VOSD’s managing editor until 2021. She oversaw VOSD’s newsroom and content.

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