In November, voters will get to pretend to be land-use experts as they decide on a handful of measures related to major development projects across the region.
Measure B, Accretive Investments’ initiative asking voters to approve a 1,746-home project near rural Valley Center where just 110 homes are currently allowed, is part of a surging statewide trend of developers going to the ballot to bypass local regulations and the standard planning process.
But as VOSD’s Maya Srikrishnan explains, with Measure B voters aren’t just deciding on the fate of the Lilac Hills Ranch project, a “yes” vote could also set some major precedents for development in San Diego county.
• A political science professor at San Diego State University told the U-T that land-use initiatives are usually a developer’s last-ditch effort to get a project approved and despite the spike in ballot-box planning attempts this year, he thinks the growth in the approach won’t likely continue since the measures are so often defeated.
• Housing and where it should or shouldn’t go is the biggest issue in the City Council elections in Escondido. (U-T)
Chargers: This Time We’ll Really Leave!
If folks don’t vote “yes” on Measure C, the Chargers are going to take their ball and go to their new home in Los Angeles.
That’s the message the anonymous Chargers officials behind this CBS Sports story are sending to San Diego voters who are being asked to approve the construction of a new downtown stadium and Convention Center expansion.
There’s growing evidence that the Chargers are attempting to reframe Measure C as a referendum on how much San Diego residents like them and want them to stay in San Diego. Assuming around 50 percent of people vote “yes,”– which isn’t the two-thirds vote needed to pass the initiative but does show a substantial amount of support – it’s a move that could give the team more leverage if it fails and the team finds itself back at the bargaining table with the city.
San Diego’s Big Waterfront Redo
The Port of San Diego has more than 100 projects and improvements in the works. The U-T’s Roger Showley rounded up and explained 19 of the most important ones.
The port is working on a new master plan that will guide future development along the waterfront. As VOSD’s Andrew Keatts pointed out, proceeding with large projects before the plan is done means that developers are the ones making big decisions about how the public land will be used.
Out of Prisons and Onto San Diego Streets
San Diego’s homeless population has a harder edge these days, and some folks say it’s one of the unintended consequences of Proposition 47.
Passed in 2014, the ballot initiative reduced certain felonies to misdemeanors, which means less people in California’s prisons. The U-T’s Dan McSwain says many of the people who would have ended up in prison or court-mandated treatment programs before Prop. 47 can now be found on San Diego streets.
“Criminals are flooding into the homeless population,” he writes.
McSwain points to an uptick in crime and talks to police and others who agree that things are rougher on the streets post-Prop. 47.
Weekend News Roundup
• You’ll want to set aside about five minutes to read this quirky story about San Diego’s famous shoe bandit who went on a 20-month spree of pilfering women’s shoes. (U-T)
• Instagram might get more interesting this week thanks to the thunderstorms in San Diego’s forecast. (Fox 5 San Diego)
• Activists are launching a new campaign to call attention to the practice of deporting immigrant veterans. (Times of San Diego)
• San Diego just made another stride in its path toward becoming the place for people interested in genes and DNA. (U-T)
• It’s been a busy year for San Diego lifeguards. (CBS 8 San Diego)
Social Media Moments
• Check out these salami, pickle and olive cones consumed by people at the big Kaaboo music festival in Del Mar this weekend.
• Here’s a quick video of small San Diego dogs taking on some snippy crawfish.