These were the most popular Voice of San Diego stories for the week of May 21-May 27.

1. San Diego’s Losing Its Grip on the Avocado Market
Salty water turns avocado leaves brown, curbs root growth and can even stop trees from producing fruit at all. In the past three years, the amount of salt in the water used by most avocado growers in San Diego County has gone up by 20 percent, according to one expert. (Ry Rivard)

2. Opinion: The Convadium May Just Be a Con
The Chargers have touted on several occasions that their proposed facility will operate just like Indianapolis’ Lucas Oil Stadium. But a review of that facility’s data shows a heavy reliance on the stadium side of the convadium for events. If taxpayers are expected to pay upward of $1.15 billion for this facility, they should be getting a return on their investment for the convention center side of the convadium. (Scott Sherman)

3. New School Discipline Program Has Fans and Results, But Few Participating Schools
A lack of human and financial resources seems to be behind the slow rollout of San Diego Unified’s restorative justice program, in which students who’ve done something wrong work together with their victims to listen and heal. One district official said San Diego Unified allocates fewer financial resources to restorative justice programs compared with other school districts around the state. (Rachel Evans)

4. The Tax Loophole That Gave Rise to San Diego’s Avocado Boom
While the county’s first avocado orchards were planted around 1915, the industry exploded six decades later thanks to congressional bumbling and some sharp-eyed tax planning. (Ry Rivard)

5. Culture Report: UCSD Converts 50-Year-Old Gallery to Classroom
UCSD’s new classroom, MCASD’s new leader, viral clowns and more. (Kinsee Morlan)

6. Why We’re Suing San Diego Unified
VOSD made a series of requests for emails related to former school board Trustee Marne Foster, the School for Creative and Performing Arts, Superintendent Cindy Marten and former principal Mitzi Lizarraga. The district complied with the requests, but redacted a number of records, arguing the information needed to remain confidential. The relevant legal question is whether the public’s right to know outweighs the agency’s right to protect information that could potentially cause it harm. (Mario Koran)

7. San Diego Unified Is Falling Far Short of Local Hiring Goals Under Big Labor Deal
Two of the members of the citizen watchdog group that oversees San Diego Unified’s bond program work for unions that are contracted with the district to provide workers under a project labor agreement. The arrangement may pose legal problems since state law bars district contractors from serving on the bond committee. (Ashly McGlone)

8. Opinion: The Waterfront Convention Center Expansion Is Dead — So Why Are We Still Talking About It?
The convadium is the solution on the table that solves both the stadium and Convention Center dilemmas that have plagued San Diego for years. (Dan McLellan)

9. San Diego’s Surging Airbnb Listings, in One Chart
The city as a whole saw Airbnb listings rise 39 percent from February 2015. The number includes full-time entire home rentals as well as rooms or guesthouses rented out while the homeowner remains on site. (Ashly McGlone)

10. 3 Things to Know About Tijuana’s Notorious Police Chief-Turned-Mayoral Candidate
If there’s one thing Julián Leyzaola is known for, it’s the allegedly ruthless methods he used during tenures as police chief in Tijuana and Ciudad Juárez to fight drug trafficking, crime and corruption. But after a shooting that left him paralyzed, Leyzaola says he also has a newfound empathy for victims. (Roxana Popescu)

Tristan is Chief Strategy Officer at the News Revenue Hub. You can follow the Hub on Facebook or Twitter or reach Tristan by email at

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