San Dieguito Academy. / Photo by Adriana Heldiz

Fourteen students accused a long-time San Dieguito High School Academy math teacher of inappropriate touching, remarks and other behavior.

After Voice of San Diego requested documents related to the complaints, the school district and teacher negotiated his resignation in January.

[newsletter_badge align=’left’] It’s not clear how long the teacher, Donn Boyd, remained in the classroom after the accusations rose to leadership of the San Dieguito Union High School District. Officials refused to discuss the case.

Boyd also declined to comment and referred us to the documents we had gotten for his rebuttal. In those, he called the accusations “spiteful untruths.”

Last fall, we reported on a longtime La Jolla High School teacher who many students accused of inappropriate touching over many years. The women told us, though, that their complaints went largely ignored by San Diego Unified School District leaders.

Smart Water Meters Slowly Roll Out

In our most recent Environment Report, Ry Rivard checks into San Diego’s progress installing “smart” water meters, which automatically report their readings to City Hall instead of relying on humans to read them. Water meters have been in the news recently as the city struggles to explain why so many water bills suddenly spiked. But only 15,000 water meters currently are “smart.”

They aren’t likely to be the culprit.

Also, Rivard looks at how San Diego is gearing up for another potential drought. “While there is some hope for a wet end to the winter, folks are gearing up for another fight against over water use,” Rivard writes. We rode out the last water shortage relatively smoothly, but the next drought may not be so easy due to the hit the Colorado River took from the last dry spell.

Hunter’s GOP Problem

On Sunday, in our Politics Report, Andrew Keatts and Scott Lewis wrote that Republicans seemed to be abandoning U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter. It felt like a signal had been sent that it was OK to challenge him. Bill Wells, the mayor of El Cajon, decided to run. We quoted Republican consultant Jen Jacobs, who said Hunter should step down.

In a new story, Politico reports there was at least one signal. “One Republican operative in the state said the National Republican Congressional Committee has signaled to consultants that they would not be punished by the national party for working for Hunter’s GOP opponents.”

Not all Republicans: The actual Republican Party of San Diego County is sticking with Hunter. In a tweet a week ago, the official party account was loyal: “The Republican Party of San Diego County has endorsed and stands by its endorsement of @Rep_Hunter. If Democrats believe they can take #CA50 they must be smoking something.”

Chairman Tony Krvaric told Politico that the local party will forcefully make the case for Hunter.

Hunter himself was in San Diego yesterday. He toured the new border wall prototypes.

• President Trump in March is coming to have a look at those. Hunter was one of the first members of Congress to endorse Trump in 2016. It’s not clear when exactly the president will arrive but it will be right around the last day people will be allowed to file to run against Hunter.

Opinion: Developers Should Build Dense

Point Loma resident Russell York wants San Diegans to build modern infrastructure that compels innovation and makes it easier to build where people have access to transportation and walkable neighborhoods. However, developers eager to build distant communities profitable back-country sprawl are organizing to oppose a ballot measure that would require voter approval if a developer wanted to override an area’s established general plan.

“The real issue at stake in this election is… whether the developers seeking to create backdoor access to our county’s laws and regulations are good for San Diego,” York writes. “At some point we must stop and ask when we will learn to plan for urban density.”

Pay for Sprawl

As part of its new plan to tackle climate change and greenhouse gas emissions, San Diego County is going forward with a plan to allow developers to offset the impacts of new development by purchasing carbon credits. Such programs allow developers to build carbon emitting projects that would otherwise be prohibited by essentially purchasing the right to pollute.

That’s not a tried-and-true approach. “It’s a novel strategy,” writes the Union-Tribune’s Joshua Emerson-Smith. And it’s a strategy that has been challenged by the the Sierra Club, who previously sued the County, during public review. “The San Diego chapter of the Sierra Club hasn’t officially announced whether it will file a new lawsuit,” Emerson-Smith reports.

Will Work for Pay

Thanks to a private donation, some homeless San Diegans will be put back to work as part of a new program that will pay them hourly wages to clean up the streets. The new Wheels of Change program joins other programs like Take Back The Streets to connect people in temporary housing with part time work that also benefits neighborhoods through trash collection and other cleaning activities. The first crew hit the streets on Monday and cleaned up 12 blocks in a four-hour shift, the Union-Tribune writes.

Democrats Party Hard in San Diego

California Democrats had their big meeting in San Diego last weekend, and one of the surprises that emerged from that event was a “stinging rebuke” given to Senator Dianne Feinstein by the party’s delegates. “A majority of the delegates … voted against endorsing Feinstein in her bid for a sixth term in the U.S. Senate.” They chose to support her challenger, state Senate leader Kevin de León, Slate reports.

Lightning Round

• A Poway lawsuit trying to stop their City Council from converting their at-large elections into by-district elections got tossed out on Friday. (Union-Tribune)

• The Fourth of July fireworks show in Ellen Browning Scripps Park in La Jolla is cancelled this year due to lack of donations. (La Jolla Light)

• Already facing civil charges of fraud, El Cajon Councilman Bessmon Kalasho is facing new allegations of trying to shield his assets using fake names and fictitious companies. (Union-Tribune)

• La Mesa is finally joining the licensed medical cannabis dispensary party. (Union-Tribune)

• The Supreme Court will not hear arguments in the case of whether President Trump can shut down the DACA program. (New York Times)

• San Diego will be the featured home for a new comedy show pilot that is in development by the co-creator of Parks and Recreation. (Union-Tribune)

Correction: An earlier version of this story said San Dieguito Academy negotiated Donn Boyd’s resignation in October. It was in January. 

Seth Hall is a local writer and technologist. You can email him at or follow him on Twitter: @loteck.

Seth Hall is co-founder of the community group San Diego Privacy, which is a member of the TRUST SD Coalition.

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