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The city’s gotten countless accolades for pledging to stop using fossil fuels. Turns out that promise in the city’s Climate Action Plan comes with a big caveat: San Diego’s not totally breaking up with natural gas.
Our Andrew Keatts found the plan doesn’t count the natural gas we use to heat up our homes, dinners or water heaters. The city’s committed to use 100 percent renewable electricity, not 100 percent renewable energy.
The bottom line? “That means the city could keep using nearly 60 percent of the natural gas it uses today and satisfy its commitment not to use any fossil fuel at all,” Keatts writes.
Digging Into D9 Donations
City Hall staffer Ricardo Flores and community activist Georgette Gomez are vying to represent District 9, which includes City Heights and Kensington. Both are Democrats.
VOSD contributor Grant Oliveira took a deep dive into the candidates’ donations and unearthed some differences.
For one, Oliveira finds, Flores is pulling in more money and larger average contributions while Gomez has reported 1.5 times as many donors, many of whom are giving in smaller amounts.
Sacramento Report: Encinitas May Stand Down
For years, Encinitas has fought and tried to evade the state’s so-called density bonus law, which lets developers exceed city building limits on properties if they include more low-income homes.
That may have to change. Now, Maya Srikrishnan reports, lawmakers have clarified the law and City Council members acknowledge they could be forced to update their policies.
Also in this week’s state politics report: Sara Libby rounds up the many bills that got Gov. Jerry Brown’s stamp of approval this week plus some high-profile tax breaks that didn’t, including Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez and state Sen. Joel Anderson’s attempt to exempt diapers from California’s sales tax.
VOSD Podcast: How the GOP Got Trumped
GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump’s rise has exposed the Republican Party’s identity crisis, leaving both party faithful and foes to speculate about its future.
Author Reihan Salam, executive editor of National Review, called into the podcast this week to talk about the history and possibilities for the Republican Party.
Salam will be in San Diego next weekend for Politifest, VOSD’s day-long political extravaganza meant to help you get up to speed on a November ballot that’s absolutely bananas. (If you haven’t RSVPed or checked out the schedule yet, you can – and should! – do that here.)
In this podcast episode, hosts Scott Lewis and Keatts also talked about the latest in a long-running hotel tax dispute, Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s continued silence on the Chargers’ convadium proposal and more.
• The man who led the mayor’s citizen stadium task force tells the Union-Tribune he’s backing the Chargers’ convadium measure. In other football stadium news, the Associated Press reports that an effort to move the Oakland Raiders to Las Vegas just crossed a big hurdle.
• San Diego State students protested this week after video circulated of SDSU officers forcefully arresting a black man. SDSU officials told City News Service he was not a student and had been behaving erratically.
• Green and Libertarian Party registrations are up in San Diego County, KPBS reports.
• The L.A. Times visited Friendship Park, where many families and loved ones on opposite sides of the border reunite on either side of a mesh fence. VOSD contributor Brooke Binkowski recently wrote about the history behind the popular meeting spot.
• KPBS reports City Heights will soon enjoy a pop-up international food market on Wednesday nights.
The Week’s Top Stories
These were the most five most popular Voice of San Diego stories for the week of Sept. 10-16. Click here to see the full top 10.
1. Behind the Scenes of San Diego’s Curfew Sweeps
The San Diego Police Department is still conducting curfew sweeps, which happen largely in certain neighborhoods. The department has long held that the sweeps are meant to keep young people safe and to deter crime. Here’s what happened when a VOSD reporter joined SDPD for a curfew sweep ride-along, then returned weeks later to experience another curfew sweep from a community resident’s perspective. (Rachel Evans)
2. The Ultimate Guide to the Local Ballot Measures
Can’t tell Measure E from Measure L? We’ve got you covered. (Voice of San Diego)
3. Why Balboa Park’s Signage Is So Bad
Getting to and around Balboa Park can be confusing. Better signage could help. (Lisa Halverstadt)
4. Embattled County Superintendent Resigns
Randy Ward will get $35,000 as part of his agreement to resign as county superintendent. (Ashly McGlone)
5. San Diego Unified Closes Some Full-Day Preschools Amid Preschool for All Push
Three of the district’s 12 child development centers, preschools intended for parents who work or attend school, are closing this week. The district is also closing one preschool that’s open to all families who meet strict income requirements. The closures come on the heels of the district’s announcement of a new Preschool for All initiative, which it pitched as a preschool expansion. (Mario Koran)