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Talk about a major misunderstanding. When the Poway Unified School District board approved a contract with financial firm Dolinka Group a few years ago, some board members said they thought the deal came with a payment cap of $625,000.
Not so says Poway Unified staff. VOSD’s Ashly McGlone reports that the staff’s interpretation of the deal is that the cap is actually an annual payment amount, which means the $625,000 contract the board thought they approved is costing $3.1 million.
The contract is for Dolinka Group to help run a special tax program that feeds into the school district and the $3.1 million amount doesn’t include separate payments to Dolinka for other work they do for the district.
Poway Unified board member Kimberley Beatty and two of her board colleagues say the contract should be pulled for review.
“It’s an extraordinary amount of money, for one. And second, there is a lack of transparency,” Beatty tells McGlone. “I think this warrants an audit.”
The Kevin Faulconer Playbook
The Associated Press says a reelection win for Mayor Kevin Faulconer would mean his low-key style, plus his pro-business, pro-environment philosophy is a model that could be replicated by Republicans far and wide, especially those running in liberal-leaning cities like San Diego.
Faulconer fans tell the AP that Faulconer’s cautious and collaborative approach is part of what has fueled his political success.
Councilman David Alvarez, though, says the mayor’s carefulness is a problem.
“There isn’t anything you can point to and say, ‘That was a bold statement or a bold decision,’” Alvarez told the AP.
• VOSD’s Scott Lewis and Andrew Keatts have talked about Faulconer’s peacemaking approach to politics in a previous past.
Weekend News Roundup
• The San Onofre settlement saga continues. The U-T’s Jeff McDonald summarizes Southern California Edison attorneys’ 37-page brief filed last week, saying the settlement is a better-than-expected deal for customers. Critics of the deal say the utility company is cherry picking its numbers.
• A longtime Little League coach gets a road in North Park named after him. (NBC 7 San Diego)
• Bad yoga puns abound in U-T columnist Logan Jenkin’s latest on the high price tag attached to Encinitas Union School District’s yoga program.
• Folks in Santee can water their lawns any day of the week thanks to relaxed restrictions from the Padre Dam Municipal Water District. (NBC 7 San Diego)
• The U-T’s Greg Moran does a deep dive on the life and times of U.S. District Court Judge Gonzalo Curiel, the recent target of attacks from Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump.
• College isn’t the only option for students graduating high schools. There’s a new state program that acknowledges the importance of preparing students with job skills so they can join the workforce right right after graduation if college isn’t their thing. (U-T)
• While the November ballot will likely be crowded with propositions, Tuesday’s ballot has just one: Proposition 50, a measure that proposes allowing the Assembly or Senate to, when necessary and with a two-thirds vote, suspend members without pay and benefits. The U-T’s editorial board says the measure ain’t perfect, but ya’ll just vote yes on it anyway since it provides another option for punishing wayward lawmakers. Here’s CalMatters on why it’s so strange. And here we talk about why local senator, Joel Anderson, is opposed to it.
• There’s a fire burning in Temecula. (10News San Diego)
• Bernie Sanders packed the Qualcomm Stadium parking lot in Mission Valley at his rally Sunday. As a side note, Sanders’ campaign workers are good; I got both a text from an unknown number and a handwritten note on my door reminding me to vote for Bernie. (Fox 5 San Diego)
San Diego Social Media Moments
• NBC 7 San Diego and VOSD hosted a debate Friday night with the mayoral candidates and a handful of folks Tweeted the highlights. In the wake of the debate, the San Diego Police Officers Association is demanding candidate Ed Harris apologize for calling police officers stormtroopers when referring to the police response to Donal Trump protestors at the Convention Center. Harris made an appearance before Sanders’ rally at Qualcomm to clarify:
“As a public safety officer, I have the utmost respect for our men and women in the San Diego Police Department. My reference was solely aimed at the poor management decision to send armored police and vehicles into the Barrio Logan neighborhood – a mile away from the protest,” Harris said in a statement.
At the debate, Harris went a bit further in criticizing the police than the ACLU so far has. David Loy, a lawyer for the group, talked about what concerns and questions the group has about how the police handled the demonstration on our podcast Saturday.
• The San Diego County Fair opened Friday night. The “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” theme this year makes for a whacky and whimsical backdrop for photos ops. Also, here’s a shot of chicken and waffles, on a stick of course.
• Folks painted a new community mural on an apartment building during Art Around Adams, an annual music and art festival that stretches across Adams Avenue in Normal Heights.
— Kinsee Morlan
Election Predictions Time!
I’m feeling a little melancholy about Liam Dillon not being around for this election so I’m keeping alive a tradition he and I started: The Election Day Contest. Andrew Keatts and I will treat whomever gets the most questions right to a lunch and if you are a member of Voice of San Diego (or become one …) you can bring a guest. We’ll go to one of our favorite places unless you feel very strongly.
Here are the questions. Send your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than Tuesday 8 a.m. The over/under lines are just educated guesses designed to make the decision as interesting as possible.
1) Over/Under: Will Ray Ellis receive more than or less than 46 percent of the vote in the District 1 San Diego City Council race?
2) Who will advance to the runoff in the District 3 County Board of Supervisors race? A) Dave Roberts and Kristin Gaspar B) Roberts and Sam Abed C) Gaspar and Abed D) No runoff! Someone will win outright.
3) Over/Under: Will Anthony Bernal receive more than or less than 45 percent of the vote in the District 3 San Diego City Council race?
4) Over/Under: Will Lori Saldaña receive more than or less than 26 percent of the vote in the mayor’s race?
5) Over/Under: Will Proposition H receive more or less than 57 percent of the vote?
6) Over/Under: Will Mara Elliott receive more or less than 14 percent of the vote in the San Diego city attorney’s race?
7) What two candidates will advance to a runoff of the city attorney’s race? (Spelling doesn’t matter but you’ll have to find their names. You may also say “no runoff” if you think you’re bad.)
8) Scott Peters will likely secure a spot in the runoff for his congressional seat. Who will advance with him? A) Jacquie Atkinson B) Denise Gitsham C) Other
9) Over/Under: Will Proposition I receive more than or less than 59.43 percent of the vote?
10) Over/Under: Will Scott Sherman receive more than or less than 49.6 percent of the vote in the District 7 San Diego City Council race?
Tie break: What percent of the vote will Todd Gloria receive in the race for the 78th Assembly District?
— Scott Lewis
Correction: An earlier version of this post misstated the location of the Bernie Sanders rally. The rally packed a section of the Qualcomm Stadium parking lot, not the stadium itself.