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Due to popular demand, we’ve added 20 more seats to the sold-out VOSD Live event tonight at downtown’s Luce Loft. Click here to secure your tickets. Doors open at 5 p.m. and VOSD’s Scott Lewis will kick off the show at 5:30 p.m. with Mayor Kevin Faulconer. Next up, VOSD’s Caty Green and Andrew Keatts will join the discussion along with foodie Troy Johnson and the very connected Rebecca Smith. If you don’t score tickets, check the podcast that we’ll release next week.

Don’t forget to make a donation during our one-day fall fundraising campaign. We have to raise $14,000 by tonight’s event in order to get a $10,000 gift from a generous VOSD member. We’re getting close. Please donate now.

The Ins and Outs of the ‘Innovation Economy’

From the mayor on down, San Diego municipal leaders really want the city to boost — and brag about — the so-called “innovation economy.” But that’s one of those fuzzy buzzwords without a firm definition.

Now, a regional technology-focused group is out with a new report that tries to create a snapshot of the innovation economy. VOSD’s Lisa Halverstadt digs into the graphs and numbers. We’re doing well, it seems: “San Diego added 412 new technology businesses in 2013, about 30 percent more new companies than it’s welcomed annually since 2011. The sector also saw more than 1,200 new jobs, according to the Connect report.”

Mayor Kevin Faulconer tells us that he’s a big fan of “incentives” to woo these companies or keep them in town. These can include subsidies, which critics dismiss as anther form of corporate welfare.

County Supervisor Dings Pension System

County Supervisor Dianne Jacob tells Pension & Investments that the county pension system inappropriately lurched forward on a controversial investment strategy: “Somebody jumped the gun and started implementing before the board authorized them to do so.”

The pension board is considering “whether to press the restart button or the reject switch on the $10.1 billion pension fund’s new allocation and outsourced… governance structure they’ve been touting for five years.”

They Live, Barely, Unseen and Unheard

Inewsource begins off a series about the “subacute” medical units in nursing homes across the state, known as “vent farms” because they’re full of the mechanical-breathing machines known as ventilators: “Most people on these units will spend the rest of their lives in bed, their bodies twisted from muscle contractures, tubes permanently inserted in their throats and stomachs, completely dependent on others to brush their teeth, comb their hair and change their diapers.”

• A series of stories by the U-T in conjunction with an investigative journalism outfit spotlighted the pathetic protections for people in California nursing homes. Now, the governor has signed a series of bills aimed at fixing the problems.

• “Several local community clinics are reporting that mental health visits are up more than 50 percent this year and some local hospitals say an influx of new Medi-Cal patients is exacerbating an ongoing shortage of long-term psychiatric beds,” the U-T reports.

Quick News Hits: Shh! Students Sleeping

• Thursday through Sunday aren’t just shaping up to be hot. They’ll also be dry and windy, and forecasters expect wildfire danger to rise.

KPBS notes that the new regional Santa Ana Wildfire Threat Index is online. In addition to showing where fires are, it ranks the threat that Santa Ana winds will fan fires in several Southern California regions. The levels in the daily ratings go from “no-rating” and “marginal” to “extreme.”

• A new program aims to stop young people from joining gangs by working with them when they’re as young as pre-school age. (KPBS)

For more about gangs, check our ongoing coverage here.

• The governor “vetoed a bill that would have required law enforcement agencies to obtain warrants to use drones for surveillance.” (LA Times)

• Everything seems to be more expensive here, from housing to taxis. Now we can add ATM out-of-network fees to the list: Ours are some of the highest in the country (No. 3 on a new list) at $4.70 on average.

• Why yes, “Saturday Night Live” did indeed include a joke during “Weekend Update” about that bizarre “killer robot” teacher-firing case in Oceanside.

• UCSD is one of several campuses with Google maps “that review the best places on campus to take a nap at based on noise levels and foot traffic,” says a college-minded web service.

Let’s hope one of them isn’t a lecture hall.

Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego and president of the American Society of Journalists and Authors. Please contact him directly at randydotinga@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter: twitter.com/rdotinga.

Voice of San Diego is a nonprofit that depends on you, our readers. Please donate to keep the service strong. Click here to find out more about our supporters and how we operate independently.

Randy Dotinga

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

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