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These were the most popular Voice of San Diego stories for the week of Mar. 11-Mar. 17.
1. Sacramento Report: State Regulators Crack Down on Beer Distributor Scheme
Sen. Toni Atkins backs big park bond, Assemblyman Randy Voepel, not so much. Also: new numbers reveal just how little of a problem voter fraud is, and more in our weekly roundup of news from Sacramento. (Voice of San Diego)
2. It’s About to Get Harder to Buy Food at Your Local Brewery
For years, San Diego breweries have invited local caterers to set up food stands in their tasting rooms. But a new county ordinance could spell the end to this symbiotic relationship. (Ian Anderson)
3. The South Bay’s Craft Beer Boom Is Upending Assumptions
At the end of 2015, San Diego County had 114 breweries and brewpubs – only two of which were in the South Bay. Citing low incomes and its minority-majority population, some brewers, sales representatives and distributors have assumed residents there only have taste buds for Bud Light, Corona and Dos Equis. A recent boom in breweries and tasting rooms is proving them wrong. (Jonah Valdez)
4. San Diego Unified Wants to Shut Down — and Mimic — Online Charters
Hannah Sanders said suspensions were an every-week thing for her when she was at Kearny High School. (Mario Koran)
5. Residents Get Ready to Rip Another New Trolley Stop Density Plan
Bay Park and nearby residents are once again mobilizing for a fight against new homes and taller buildings near a planned new trolley stop. This time, the city may not back down as easily. (Andrew Keatts)
6. ‘A Hopeful Tale of What San Diego Might Become’
Placemaking projects — where community members transform empty lots and underused spaces — have the potential to attract tourists and local visitors to neighborhoods they might not normally visit, boosting the local economy and even creating safer streets. (Clifford Deaton)
7. School Bond Money Can Be — and Is — Used on Employee Salaries
In 2000, California voters made it easier to pass school bonds, but they included a caveat: The money can’t be spent on employee salaries. So it may come as a surprise to learn school districts statewide have been freely — and legally — spending bond money on employee salaries and benefits for more than a decade. (Ashly McGlone)
8. ‘My Job Is Not to Help Them’: Business Districts Increasingly Target Homelessness
In the absence of city or regional plans to address the growing homelessness crisis, business districts are stepping up with their own initiatives. Some groups have taken steps that do more to displace homeless folks than help them get off the street. (Lisa Halverstadt)
9. San Diego Explained: Routes to a Better Regional Train System
On this week’s San Diego Explained, NBC 7’s Monica Dean and Voice of San Diego’s Andrew Keatts update folks on California’s high-speed rail project and discuss other options for faster train travel in the region. (Kinsee Morlan)
10. What 1,576, 400, 800 and 977 Have in Common: They’ve All Been Cited as the District’s Layoff Total
How many positions are being lost as part of San Diego Unified’s budget cuts? Depending on who you ask, it’s either 400 to 500, or “more than 800,” or 850, or 977 or more than 1,500. The district’s own documents and top officials have only added to the confusion. (Ashly McGlone)