The first legal marijuana dispensary in San Diego cleared the last regulatory hurdle on Thursday and will open for business in March, U-T San Diego reports. The shop will be located in Otay Mesa, near the U.S.-Mexico border.

“It will be the first legal dispensary to operate in the city since California voters approved the use of medical marijuana in 1996,” says the U-T

KPBS notes the shop still needs to have its staff vetted before it can officially open its doors. That’s the last step in a long process it describes that is required to gain approval. Applications, permits, reviews, hearings, more reviews and more hearings all must come first. “At least 38 other applicants are seeking a permit,” KPBS notes.

Raising Taxes for a New Stadium

Two big-ticket items are looming on the horizon for San Diego: an infrastructure repair bill totaling over a billion dollars and a new home for the Chargers, which would potentially be combined with a costly Convention Center expansion. Creative ideas for funding these huge projects aren’t working out, so it’s looking increasingly likely that San Diego taxpayers will be asked to pick up the tab. But how many people would need to approve such big changes depends on the details. Scott Lewis joined NBC 7’s Catherine Garcia to break down how a proposal to increase taxes to pay for something, or to sell a bunch of land, would need to be approved voters and by how big of a margin.

Missing Vaccines Hit Hard

A recent outbreak of measles is just the latest episode that is causing experts to fear for our immunity against devastating diseases long thought defeated. Inewsource reports on how “more than 3,300 San Diego kindergartners began the 2014-2015 school year lacking one or more recommended vaccinations against diseases such as measles, polio and whooping cough,” which puts other children (yes, even immunized ones) at risk. Inewsource compiled the vaccine data into a map, where you can search by school name to find out if your child is attending a school with below-average vaccination rates.

• There are 13 confirmed cases of measles in San Diego, San Diego 6 reports.

• Some doctors are starting to post signs letting parents know that their unvaccinated children will not be welcome. (U-T)

You Thought Football Was Violent

And just like that, we sports-skeptical, sunbathing San Diegans have our very own hockey team. The move is part of a splintering of the American Hockey League, which is sending several teams to the West Coast to see about drumming up more interest. has a refresher on the history of hockey in San Diego.

The team will play at the Valley View Casino Center. The Times of San Diego has been tracking rumors that the team will be known as the San Diego Gulls. Crazed hockey fans eager to get in on products and tickets early can already sign up to get details at the team’s official website.

News Nibbles

• That highly contentious Jack in the Box in North Park won its court case, with help from the city. (Daily Transcript)

• One California lawmaker wants professional cheerleaders to be considered employees of the teams they cheer for. (KPBS)

• Another lawmaker wants to increase the minimum age for smoking from 18 to 21. (NBC 7)

• One group delivered a list of demands to San Diego police with the goal of strengthening public trust in the department. (10 News)

• In a big writeup on being transparent with your kids about family finances, the New York Times describes an Encinitas father who decided to teach his kids about managing finances by dumping a month’s worth of salary in cash on the kitchen table and portioning it off by household expenses.

• A bunch of companies are getting together to create a series of high-speed charging stations for electric vehicles at regular intervals along the West Coast from San Diego to Portland. (

• Fees paid to outside attorneys and other legal fees completely dwarf the amount of money the city of San Diego pays out in legal settlements. “The city of San Diego is settling a pension lawsuit for $70,000 after spending more than $2 million on outside attorneys.” (NBC 7)

My Other Car Is Inflatable

Moving through traffic in the neighborhood where the 805 and I-5 merge is an exercise in patience on most days. Desperate drivers perhaps had a moment of inspiration on Thursday when a hot air balloon made an emergency landing in a busy parking lot in Sorrento Valley, according to NBC 7. The solutions to road congestion are obvious: balloon-pooling, Balloon Rapid Air Transit, and balloon-attachable bike racks. But where will we ever find enough hot air?

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

Seth Hall is co-founder of the community group San Diego Privacy, which is a member of the TRUST SD Coalition.

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