This week we’re honing in on some of the top issues that make San Diego business owners cringe. Yesterday, we called out the San Diego’s high workers’ compensation costs as the first harbinger of local business’ pain.

The second horseman of our business apocalypse is the pestilence of high living costs in San Diego. What are we talking about when we mention the “costs” of living here? “The steep price tags for homes or rentals, for gas and public transit, for entertainment and everything else that goes into living in San Diego,” wrote Lisa Halverstadt.

Higher prices in the city mean business owners are faced with a constant decision: sap their bank accounts to pay employees a livable salary, or go do business elsewhere via moving or outsourcing.

And the high living costs present a recruiting and retainment challenge, too. “Out-of-town job candidates opt against a move to San Diego because of the high costs,” Halverstadt wrote. “Living costs are increasingly persuading lower and middle-income workers to look elsewhere.”

Busting Bridges: Culture Report

The La Concha bridge once helped connect San Diego with Tijuana, but with rapid border expansion and reconstruction, this iconic 40 year-old bridge could soon be the target of a wrecking ball.

Alex Zaragoza highlighted the plight of that bridge, along with new acquisitions by the San Diego Museum of Art and a man who is living in a tiny home and forgoing showers in the name of environmental activism, all in our most recent Culture Report.

District 8 Snub

Cornelius Bowser Sr., bishop at Charity Apostolic Church in San Diego, listened recently to Mayor Faulconer delivering a speech about the state of the city. While pleased to hear Faulconer’s message of all San Diegans reaping in the benefits of our city’s success, Bowser struggled to find any message relevant to the neighborhoods he serves, like Barrio Logan and Grantville.

“I thank our mayor for reaching out to some of the communities in southeastern San Diego,” Bowser wrote in a submission to VOSD. “But several days later, I’m still wondering whether southeastern San Diego’s District 8 was included.”

Fishmongers Gonna Monger

A while back we told you the story of San Diego fishermen who were struggling to find a place on dry land to hold a fish market. With enough attention on the issue, the fishermen ended up getting their wish.

Now, KPBS reported the fisherman are working with Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins to get a state law passed that would permanently expand the market’s hours and services. “Her bill would allow fish to be cleaned and sold directly at fishermen’s markets,” KPBS wrote. “Now, fish can only be sold whole.”

New Rules On Legal Weed

The San Diego City Council met on Tuesday and agreed to further regulate legal marijuana dispensaries. While they agreed on requiring background checks for employees, and on requirements to test marijuana for molds and pesticides, they couldn’t agree on other issues. “City officials said they can’t regulate deliveries, despite their desire to do so, based on advice from the City Attorney’s office,” U-T San Diego wrote. Nor could agreement be reached on banning edible marijuana products.

All that regulation doesn’t come free, though. The new regulations also established “a minimum fee of nearly $1,100 for annual operating permits,” KPBS reported.

Police Tactics: East vs. West

The New York Times wondered why New York’s fight against crime can’t be more like San Diego’s. They highlighted one of those brilliant moments in policing, where San Diego police, instead of flooding a crime-ridden bus stop with constant enforcement and patrols, simply moved the bus stop to a better-lit location. “From 2002 to 2012, while violent crime in New York fell by 19 percent, violent crime in San Diego fell by 27 percent,” the Times wrote.

A columinst for City Journal wasn’t impressed by the Times’ comparison of the two cities. “Despite San Diego’s much lower violent crime rate, in 1999, the allegedly pacific San Diego police department fatally shot civilians at 15 times the rate of the NYPD,” they wrote.

News Nibbles

• Francine Busby faced a challenge to her spot as chair of the local Democratic Party from Steve Rivera. But Busby prevailed.

• Tuesday’s “Morning Report” misunderstood  the opinion of a U-T San Diego story about the likelihood of a downtown stadium project. “My bad,” wrote Randy Dotinga.

• San Diego’s long-awaited report on fixing the city’s infrastructure landed on Tuesday. The price tag for fixing our stuff? $3.8 billion, Times of San Diego reported.

• Some San Diego hospitals are trying to reverse the awful reputation of hospital food by serving fresh, local recipes. (KPBS)

• A group of law enforcement agencies from across the state have joined efforts to bring down the hammer on perpetrators of human trafficking.  (NBC 7)

• The city auditor raised an early warning when his audit uncovered nearly 100 contracts with the city of San Diego which are going unmonitored by any city staff to ensure they do not exceed limits, the U-T reported.

• Management changes at the San Diego Foundation continue to shake things up in the non-profit world, and some are worried about the recent loss of a key arts and culture strategy position and director. (CityBeat)

• Two community colleges in San Diego will get to start offering some specific four-year degrees for the first time. (L.A. Times)

In Case Of Emergency, Retweet

Researchers at San Diego State University are teaming up with the government to study how social media can be used to disseminate messages in an emergency. Their plan? Use the popular kids on Twitter. The researchers “are in the process of identifying and reaching out to the top 1,000 Twitter users in San Diego County and asking them to agree to retweet the county’s emergency messages.” Most of the users, they wrote, will be from the younger generation. So, for once, the lesson in emergency response is: adults, heed your juniors’ (tweets).

Seth Hall is a local writer and technologist. You can email him at or follow and heed his advice on Twitter: @loteck.

Seth Hall

Seth Hall is a local writer and technologist. You can reach him at or follow him on Twitter: @loteck.

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