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Mayor Kevin Faulconer is standing with the Chargers after negotiating concessions with the team regarding Measure C. But, as our Scott Lewis notes, when the City Council had a different tax increase and proposition in front of it, 2010’s Proposition D, Faulconer sang a different tune about October efforts to make it look better with nonbinding agreements like this.

In short, nonbinding agreements, then-City Councilman Faulconer argued, were not worth anything. The leaders who make those deals could leave, he argued. The only thing that definitely would not change is the language actually in the new law.

Lewis points out another twist. What good is negotiating with the Chargers at this point? Measure C is all about a stadium but doesn’t actually name the team. Initiatives aren’t supposed to name the beneficiary. Making one group the beneficiary is illegal. The Chargers aren’t supposed to definitely be the winners in Measure C. “That they are already negotiating about it is kind of a funny parody of that line in the California Constitution,” Lewis writes.

Dumanis Finally Endorses for City Attorney

Months ago we wrote about one of the most intriguing side dramas in this fall’s election is the tension between two Republicans who don’t seem to get along: District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis and one of her employees, prosecutor Robert Hickey, who’s the only GOPer running for city attorney. Dumanis had even reprimanded a Republican elected official for supporting Hickey.

Dumanis has withheld her support of Hickey, a move that delighted supporters of his Democratic opponent. They made an ad around it. That provoked Dumanis to finally stand by her employee and endorse him, our Andrew Keatts reports.

Election Roundup: Thanks. Oh Hey, Here’s $50K

“The developer of the controversial Lilac Hills Ranch project contributed $50,000 to the Republican Party of San Diego County shortly after the party voted to endorse the development,” inewsource reports. A foe of the project says it looks “like an endorsement was bought from the San Diego Republican Party.”

A spokesman for the developer tells inewsource that the endorsement came before the donation — and this is important to point out because why? — and that the company has donated to both parties over the past 20 years.

• Rep. Darrell Issa’s campaign is protesting two commercials by his Democratic opponent and threatening to file a libel suit. (U-T)

• CityBeat columnist John Lamb dropped by Monday’s odd press conference in opposition to the Chargers stadium measure on the November ballot. Oddly enough, “proponents packed the small Central Library conference room rented for the occasion. Just before the press conference began, dozens of orange-shirted members of Laborers Local 89 hopped off a white shuttle bus to attend the event.”

How’d things go? “Save for a singular ‘Boo!’and a few taunts, measure backers were generally respectful of their outnumbered opponents, a loosely knit coalition of political insiders, urban planners, tax-hike combatants and gentrification skeptics who sense nothing but doom for the future of East Village and the neighboring underserved communities of Barrio Logan and Sherman Heights.”

More Politics: State of the State

The latest edition of San Diego Explained, our video series with NBC 7, looks at the related marijuana measures on the state and San Diego ballots.

• The L.A. Times runs the numbers and finds that the number of registered voters in California, more than 18 million, tops the population of all but four states.

Opinion: A Better Option for S.D. High

A low-profile measure on the city ballot will ask voters whether San Diego High should stay in Balboa Park or get the bum’s rush and have to skedaddle by 2024. In a VOSD commentary, designer Howard Blackson of Michael Baker International and Michael Stepner, professor of architecture and urban design at the NewSchool of Architecture + Design, urge a no vote and a move toward an alternative plan to promote a “school in the park”: “Let’s get our city leaders to think of a more innovative solution that works well for both San Diego High and Balboa Park.”

The U-T editorial board, by the way, wants voters to reject the measure.

Salton Sea Keeps Shaking

A day after officials called off an unprecedented earthquake alert prompted by a swarm of quakes by the Salton Sea and the San Andreas Fault, a pair of earthquakes at magnitudes 3.4 and 3.0 hit the region yesterday.

Here’s a quick look at the situation:

What’s going on? The swarm spawned worries about a bigger quake, the L.A. Times reported. “The San Andreas fault’s southernmost stretch has not ruptured since about 1680 — more than 330 years ago, scientists estimate. And a big earthquake happens on average in this area once every 150 or 200 years, which is why the region is long overdue for a major quake.” But the risk wasn’t considered to be higher than 1 in 100.

What does the “Earthquake Lady” who’s always being quoted say?

Seismologist Lucy “Earthquake Lady” Jones — yes, that’s her nickname — is more concerned about the risk we face every day than that during the period of the earthquake advisory: “Very unlikely big EQ will happen in next few days,” she wrote on Twitter. “Highly likely it will occur sometime in your life.”

How about the local geologist guy who’s always showing up in stories about quakes? Is he freaked out?

Absolutely not. “Every Californian knows when you wake up every day there may be a big earthquake,” says San Diego State’s Pat Abbott.

Is San Diego a hot spot for deadly earthquakes?

No, at least not over recorded history. Unlike San Francisco and L.A., we’ve been spared major damaging and deadly quakes. Only one person has been killed by a quake here as far as anyone knows, and he was a unique case. For more on our not-so-shaky earthquake past, click here.

What should I do if a big earthquake hits?

The L.A. Times has an extensive and helpful look at earthquake safety. The old stand-by still applies: “During an earthquake, drop to the floor and cover your neck and head with your hands, and get underneath a table and hold on!”

One tip: Don’t hustle to stand under a doorway. That’s not recommended anymore. Another tip: Keep a battery-powered radio around so you can get the latest information after a quake. Don’t assume your cell phone will keep working if the power goes out. Service vanished for many users during the 2011 blackout.

Quick News Hits: Cuyamaca Memories

• VOSD’s weekly North County Report takes note of news about new sand for local beaches, even more drama in the Oceanside city treasurer race after the death of the incumbent candidate, and concerns about sober-living homes.

• Chula Vista residents are worried about the temporary closure of a fire station (NBC 7)

• State residents seem to be settling back into their old ways when it comes to water use now that mandatory conservation is mostly history. (L.A. Times)

• Last week, KPBS commemorated the 70th anniversary of the sixth-grade camp at Cuyamaca Hundreds of thousands of San Diegans traveled there as kids for a glimpse of the great outdoors. My dad, a longtime Chula Vista sixth-grade teacher, told KPBS that kids would often cry the first night because they were away from home for the first time, “and by the end of the week they didn’t want to go back home. The kids would be crying as they left.”

Ruth Hayward, a dedicated VOSD reader who provided one of the most memorable quotes of my journalism career, sent me a note this week. Turns out she went to Cuyamaca herself as a sixth-grader in 1948.

“I remember one counselor, Dewy Youngblood. One day, with Dewy leading, we were bussed to the trail leading up to Stonewall Peak,” she writes. “Up we went for a spectacular view and examined a rock cave used by Native Americans. Then we walked back to Camp. Dewy taught us a bit of knife carving and took us to a place where we dug a damp terra-cotta type clay. We made some figures that were fired in the campfire. Food was good.”


I went to sixth-grade camp at Cuyamaca too, a few decades later than 1948. Unfortunately, I barely remember a darned thing. My experience is locked away in a memory hole, the same place where I’m hoping to send this week’s vice presidential debate.

Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego. He is also immediate past president of the 1,200-member American Society of Journalists and Authors (asja.org). Please contact him directly at randydotinga@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter: twitter.com/rdotinga.

Randy Dotinga

Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego. Please contact him directly at randydotinga@gmail.com...

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