Reluctantly crouched at the starting line, Chula Vista — the nation’s 74th largest city — is poised to win the race to become San Diego County’s most Cannabis-friendly place.

City leaders don’t necessarily want Chula Vista to become the county’s weed capital. Still, the city has “drafted an ordinance that would allow for three retailers per each of the city’s four Council districts. Those licenses could go to either public storefronts or delivery services — a first for the region and a major victory for those in the industry who’ve lobbied for more options,” our Jesse Marx reports.

Also, “Chula Vista’s ordinance is also unique in that it places no restrictions on the number of licenses awarded to the growers, manufacturers, distributors and testers that make up the local supply chain.”

There’s no guarantee that the City Council will pass the ordinance, and some changes are possible. But if it most or all of it survives, the reason will have a lot to do with the fear that if the council doesn’t act, voters will — and they may approve a measure that’s ultra-friendly to the marijuana industry.

Marx’s story also looks at how other South Bay cities are handling the marijuana conundrum.

Chula Vista, by the way, is home to about 267,000 people, making it bigger than Buffalo, Baton Rouge, Irvine, Reno, Richmond, Va., and St. Petersburg, Fl. And it’s close on the heels, population-wise, of Orlando and Toledo.

Politics Report: Sports Arena Intrigue

The latest Sunday newsletter from Andrew Keatts and Scott Lewis includes the language of yet another poll asking what people would support at the site of the Valley View Casino Center (aka the Sports Arena). They also check in on big investments that went into some independent campaigns to support two City Councilmembers re-election. And Scott Peters, the former Council president and now congressman, wouldn’t mind being mayor someday.

Homeless Man Nearly Taken, and Killed, with Trash

We routinely get news about the deadly threats facing San Diego’s highly visible homeless population, from a vicious serial murderer to a killer hepatitis epidemic. Just the other day came news about how the death toll among local homeless people is rising faster than their overall numbers, and the statistics didn’t even include those who died from hepatitis A.

Now comes news of another horror. As the U-T reports, “San Diego city work crews nearly killed a homeless man who was inside a tent they scooped off the sidewalks and placed into a garbage truck. Only the man’s screams and frantic arm-waving prevented the clean-up team from activating the hydraulic trash compactor.”

The incident happened in December. The police apparently had cleared the area; SDPD didn’t respond to questions from the newspaper.

The Guardian reported last year that dumpsters “are implicated in dozens of homeless deaths.”

El Cajon’s now-rescinded rule banning people from feeding the homeless in city parks managed to rile a lot of people. City officials blamed the rule on the hepatitis A outbreak and a lack of food sanitation, but the regulation didn’t stop other people from holding picnics at the park.

So should you feed the homeless in public places? U-T columnist Michael Smolens offers a verdict: While he calls out the “ham-handedness” of El Cajon’s efforts, he says providing food outside places like churches and shelters it allows homeless to avoid getting access to services designed to help them get off the street.

Tronc Drama, New Chapter Every Day

We learned late Sunday that LA Times has another new editor in chief, the third in six months. The paper has gone through some extreme turmoil lately.

Here are two other pieces if this interests you: One, an analysis at Nieman Lab of the parent company’s plans or lack there of. (Remember the same company owns the U-T.) The other, a rather breathless perspective from HuffPost on what ownership’s real motivations are.

Quick News Hits: Our XFL Team Could Be XXXXtreme!!

“San Diego is facing decreased funding for infrastructure combined with a longer list of needed projects, creating a $1.57 billion gap that is jeopardizing the city’s ability to fix sidewalks, build bike lanes and keep parks in good shape,” the U-T reports. The gap is up by $310 million over last year.

Miramar reported the hottest temperature in the nation Sunday.

A controversial “wind farm” — a collection of 57 wind turbines — is finally opening in the East County backcountry after years of wrangling, the U-T reports.

These were quite the rock sculptures in Carlsbad until… Timberrrrr! (Reddit)

The U-T has a disturbing story of how traumatic brain injury can affect kids who never make it to college football, let alone the pros.

Are you ready for a pro football league that forces players to toe a pro-America political line and, in its previous incarnation, emphasized low pay in return for even more violence than the NFL? How about a team right here?

It’s possible. Vince McMahon may resurrect the not-so-dearly-departed XFL league.

The U-T doesn’t think we have a stadium that will fit the bill for an XFL team.

The XFL was only around for a single season in 2001, an infamous disaster notable for the terrible names of its teams (“Memphis Maniax,” “New Jersey Hitmen”) and weird rules.

This time around, there are plans to ban players with criminal records and focus on a safer version of football. “Don’t fall for this,” urges Deadspin. “Please don’t fall for it. Oh god, you’re going to, aren’t you.”

If the league does launch, let’s suggest some good XFL-style names for a San Diego that manages to find an appropriate place to play.

if you have an idea for a name, drop me a line. For now, here’s my submission: Meet the San Diego Convicted Mayors! Motto: “Their misconduct is XXXXtreme!!”

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 ( Please contact him directly at and follow him on Twitter:

Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego. Please contact him directly at and follow him on Twitter:

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