Firing San Diego County Sheriff deputies who misbehave isn’t easy.
Just ask Sheriff Bill Gore, who occasionally has to sue to keep problem deputies from returning to the job. Sometimes, even that doesn’t work, reports Mario Koran.
Koran highlights the case of Jeffrey Hornacek, a deputy fired earlier this year after struggling to get through his field training. After the deputy made a series of mistakes, Gore decided he was unfit for public service.
The county’s Civil Service Commission, an independent review board to which county employees can appeal disciplinary actions, reinstated Hornacek.
In June, Gore filed a lawsuit against the commission, it abused its discretion.
The case provides a rare look at officer discipline proceedings, which have effectively been hidden from public view in California since a court decision in 2006. Koran uses the opportunity to take a closer look at some of the past actions of the Civil Service Commission, which does uphold terminations in some of the most egregious cases of deputy misconduct.
State Funding for Affordable Housing
State lawmakers return to Sacramento Monday, and some local leaders think they should prioritize passing Senate Bills 2 and 3. Both would create new funding to create and preserve affordable housing.
In a new op-ed for Voice of San Diego, County Supervisor Ron Roberts, City Councilman Chris Ward and San Diego Housing Commission CEO Richard C. Gentry, all on the Regional Task Force on the Homeless, argue that the money would be a critical step in solving the statewide housing crisis.
“A variety of solutions is needed to address the housing crisis, including reducing regulations and costs,” they write. “We also support these efforts. But without adequate, stable sources of funding, the development of affordable housing will continue to lag behind the need, leaving families, seniors, veterans, individuals with disabilities and homeless individuals with precious few options for a place to call home.”
San Diego History Lessons
From swastikas on light fixtures of The Prado restaurant in the House of Hospitality in Balboa Park, to the the still-standing Confederate memorial in a city-owned cemetery, to voters refusing the city’s decision to rename downtown’s Market Street after Martin Luther King Jr., the Union-Tribune’s Roger Showley takes an in-depth look at the city’s “culture wars and historic faceoffs over the decades.”
In other history-related news, the U-T also looks at some local historian’s efforts to trace the route of the original Highway 101 and reports that a poll the paper conducted about renaming Qualcomm Stadium found that lots of people want to dust off the historic name San Diego Jack Murphy Stadium.
The city is actively looking for someone to buy the naming rights of the stadium before Sept. 1, and the U-T says since the new name is guaranteed for 16 months, it’s a good deal for whatever company ends up taking it.
Lemon Grove Weed Wars
In an op-ed for East County Magazine, Lemon Grove City Councilwoman Jennifer Mendoza says Lemon Grove residents shouldn’t sign a petition asking residents to support a special election to vote on changing restrictions on where medical marijuana dispensaries can be located in the city.
Last year, Lemon Grove residents voted to allow medical marijuana dispensaries, but the ordinance says the facilities must be located at least 1,000 feet away from protected uses, like schools, parks and day care centers.
As I previously reported, that rule has turned out to be much more restrictive than the marijuana proponents who wrote the ordinance predicted. It turns out there are a lot of small in-home day care cares spread across the city, which makes it hard to find a location 1,000 feet away from one. The issue has led some marijuana entrepreneurs to offer day care center owners money and other perks if they agree to shut down or move.
Weekend News Roundup
• Drug-smuggling drones at the border are now officially a thing. (Associated Press)
• The Union-Tribune and KPBS teamed up for the launch of the inaugural San Diego Festival of Books happening Saturday in Liberty Station. CityBeat columnist Aaron Belfer pointed out that the lineup of writers featured in the event is overwhelmingly white.
• Here’s what Mayor Kevin Faulconer thinks the California GOP needs to do stay relevant. (Union-Tribune)
• San Diego homes sure are expensive. The Times of San Diego reports on a Zillow analysis showing that “San Diego now has 25 neighborhoods where at least 10 percent of the homes are priced at $1 million or more.”
• The eclipse is happening Monday and while viewing glasses will be hard to get this late in the game, I’d be willing to bet that some folks going to the many eclipse-viewing parties will be willing to share.