Just west of where the federal government put up the prototypes for a border wall, there’s a different type of construction boom coming. Otay Mesa home to some of San Diego’s last stretches of under-developed land, and the area is being primed for big development in many ways. “New development, improved infrastructure and advances in border technology are setting Otay up to be a major industrial and commercial hub,” Maya Srikrishnan reports.
Community plans are in the works. A rapid bus project is set to come online next year. City leaders hope these and other infrastructure improvements are setting Otay Mesa up to alleviate residential and industrial needs in the region.
Those needs will only grow as new border routes come online. The brand new “Otay II” border crossing will start construction after the final portions of the new State Route 11 highway are under way in 2019.
The Learning Curve: Latino Student Proficiency
“There’s not a single county in the state where the majority of Latino students scores proficient in math or English language arts on standardized tests,” Mario Koran reports, in his latest roundup of education news. He writes about a new report that tries to get at why students in this demographic have such a hard time.
Lack of access to preschool programs is in there, as well as lack of access to college prep. Latino students also attend some of the most segregated schools in the state, and are therefore often taught by the most inexperienced teachers.
Koran also reports on some updates to bilingual education in California as well as some reactions to our recent story about how San Diego Unified sends people to collections when they fall behind on school bus payments.
We get a real window into what school district officials think of Koran.
Police Bodycam Videos: San Diego Explained
Once upon a time, the promise of police-worn body cameras was they would give an objective view into police-involved incidents and allow the public to discover what really happened. But as it turns out, many police departments including San Diego’s don’t think the public should have access to those videos, in most cases. There are some reasons where an individual can get a look at a video from such a camera, though. Ashly McGlone and NBC 7’s Monica Dean look into the narrow circumstances where videos can be viewed in our most recent San Diego Explained.
Cate Used Personal Email To Leak
Councilmember Chris Cate is still facing questions over a confidential memo that he didn’t keep confidential. When Cate decided to send the confidential document to representatives of the SoccerCity initiative, he did so not from his city-provided email account, but from a personal email address. Cate “sent a confidential city memo to a lobbyist via an email account linked to his re-election campaign website,” KPBS’s Andrew Bown reports. Cate’s private spokesman says the councilman was working remotely on that day, so he used a personal account.
Disabled Homeless Fight Back
A group of disabled homeless people has filed a federal lawsuit against San Diego demanding they be allowed to sleep in their vehicles and park their RVs on public streets. The Union-Tribune’s David Garrick reports the group is made up of nine people aged 54 to 70 who say they are disabled and can’t afford rents in San Diego and aren’t comfortable at homeless shelters. “The lawsuit says the RV law and vehicle habitation ordinance both violate numerous U.S. and state constitutional rights,” Garrick writes.
City Reports On Barrio Logan Gym Collapse
When 50 children ran upstairs at a Barrio Logan facility on Saturday, they were expecting to eat pizza. Instead, the upper-level structure and stairwell they were standing on collapsed, injuring 20 kids. NBC 7 reports the structure the kids were climbing on and many other improvements in the building had not been inspected and permitted. The gym includes a parkour training gym, a CrossFit gym, an indoor paintball field and associated rooms like locker rooms. The city has demanded the owners of the building stop all unpermitted use.
The San Diego Metropolitan Transit System owns the building. City inspectors cited MTS and warned that the structural support for the building’s roof has been compromised.
• San Diego’s approach to investigating and prosecuting elder abuse has become the envy of law enforcement agencies far and wide. (Star Tribune)
• A massacre was likely avoided in California this week thanks to a school that followed lock down procedures as a gunman approached. Local school districts are now upping the number lock down drills as a response. (NBC 7)
• The House of Representatives passed a sweeping tax overhaul bill on Thursday, but many California Republican representatives voted against it. (NBC 7)
• A fourth Democrat has entered the race to challenge Darrel Issa for his seat in congress. This time it’s Sara Jacobs. She worked in the Obama State Department, tried to help Hillary Clinton get elected and ran a nonprofit called Project Connect. She’s also the granddaughter of Qualcomm co-founder Irwin Jacobs. (Union-Tribune)
• The downtown “free ride” program that uses electric carts to shuttle people around is growing, thanks to San Diego raising its investment into the program from $2 million to $5.7 million. (Union-Tribune)
• Tech firms are increasingly loving the San Diego region because it hasn’t gotten as expensive as Los Angeles and San Francisco. Yet. (Bisnow)