Late Wednesday, Coastal Christian Academy posted on Facebook an email it had sent parents announcing that the superintendent of the school and the teacher who were subjects of our story Monday have resigned. The school’s Cathy Dobbs wrote:
As discussed at yesterday’s meeting, both Mr. Cates and Mr. Brady have resigned and are no longer at the school.
I have had the pleasure of teaching your elementary school children for the past 1 1/2 years, and during that time I have also assisted the Superintendent on several occasions on various matters at Coastal. With that, I have been appointed as the acting Superintendent of Coastal.
VOSD’s Kayla Jimenez reported Monday that school officials in Oceanside had substantiated multiple incidents of misconduct by Brady against students, as well as harassment complaints made by Brady’s female coworkers, and that he’d found employment at Coastal Christian Academy despite his teaching credential being revoked over those incidents.
The City Said it Had No Lead Pipes – The Truth Is it Doesn’t Know
San Diego can’t say what a mind-bending two-thirds c or 192,000 – of San Diego’s water lines are made of.
That’s according to new data, analyzed by Voice of San Diego’s Ry Rivard, which also shows that San Diego is far behind other cities in determining how many of its water lines are made of lead. Those lines deliver water to San Diegans’ homes.
A 2017 law required cities in California to take stock of how many of their pipes did contain lead and how many did not by 2020.
Los Angeles, for instance, knows what 99 percent of its lines – it has three times as many as San Diego – are made of.
If city officials can’t determine whether the lines are lead-free, they’ll have to replace them. And that could cost up to nearly a billion dollars.
City officials have misled the public about what they did and didn’t know about the water lines over the years. Some have previously asserted that no lines in the city are made of lead.
At Long Last, MTS Updates Fare Payment Contract in a Rush
MTS has been talking about changing its fare payment system since 2014, and getting publicly criticized for the state of its system since 2016. The system today is complicated and doesn’t effectively encourage new riders or take advantages of technological changes – like cell phones – to make riding easy.
Soon, the North County Transit District is expected to join that contract, so the two transit agencies will still have an integrated payment network. And L.A.’s commuter rail agency, Metrolink, which runs trains into Oceanside, also recently signed on with the same vendor.
But the deal also means MTS will be moving away from its current vendor, Cubic, a San Diego-based company with 1,500 jobs here that runs fare payment systems in London, New York and other cities around the world.
Federal procurement rules prohibited MTS from taking Cubic’s local status into account when it selected a new vendor, an MTS spokesman said.
There’s one other odd thing about the deal. The agency is voting on the new contract in its last meeting of the year, just weeks before new elected officials take office. As many as a third of the board members who vote on the contract Thursday will be out of office next year. The contract also advanced out of MTS’s executive committee last week with four votes, two of which were cast by officials leaving office.
Board chair Georgette Gomez did not respond to questions on why approving the contract couldn’t wait until January.
San Diego Unified Agrees to Keep Emails for Two Years
San Diego Unified School District has agreed to retain its emails for two years, as the result of lawsuits filed by Voice of San Diego and San Diegans for Open Government.
The San Diego Unified board of trustees initially passed a plan that would have allowed emails to be deleted after one year. If the policy had gone through, untold emails – some of which may have been of great public interest – could have been deleted. But Voice sued to stop the plan and a judge in August temporarily blocked San Diego Unified from instituting the new policy.
As VOSD’s Sara Libby writes, “The settlement – if it is approved by San Diego Superior Court Judge Ronald Styn – puts to rest one issue within a broader lawsuit filed by Voice of San Diego against San Diego Unified over the district’s failure to produce records under the California Public Records Act.” A trial for the case is set for next year.
The tentative settlement, announced by the school board Tuesday, would mean the district adheres to a two-year email retention policy for the next five years.
- Also at Tuesday’s school board meeting, trustees received a report stating they’d need to identify close to $37 million in budget cuts for next school year. (KPBS)
Judge Suspends Encinitas Law That Let Voters Kill Housing Plans
Encinitas has 120 days to draft and send a new housing plan to California regulators, regardless of what the city’s current residents think about it.
Such plans are mandated by the state every eight years, but the coastal North County enclave has been defying the state because of a local law giving voters veto power over major land-use changes.
As Jesse Marx reports, a San Diego County Superior Court judge temporarily suspended that law Wednesday, a victory for groups representing various developer and low-income tenants who sued the city, but also the start of a new battle. Encinitas residents will still be able to vote on future housing plans.
Those plans do not require that any new housing actually gets built. Instead, it is a blueprint of where new housing could theoretically go.
Susan Turney, one of the most vocal opponents of the housing plan that was struck down in November, told the Coast News that she hopes city officials will continue to respect the people’s voices by incorporating some of their suggestions. That includes height limits and the elimination of a fee that allows developers to avoid building more affordable housing.
Last week, Marx also profiled a veteran and retired nurse who rents an apartment in Encinitas and is at risk of being priced out a community she’s called home for nearly a quarter century.
Hotelier Bill Evans Sues Hotel Workers Union
Evans, owner of Torrey Pines Lodge and the Bahia and Catamaran Resorts, has sued the local hotel workers union and building trades unions for allegedly illegally leveraging environmental laws. Read the suit here.
In Other News
- An inewsource report identifies major security gaps for U.S. Navy warships in San Diego.
- The Trump administration is no longer considering housing migrant children at California military bases like Camp Pendleton. (Sacramento Bee)
- An investigation is underway into whether UC San Diego Chancellor Pradeep Khosla bullied university staffers. (Union-Tribune)
- One of San Diego’s oldest family-run restaurants is closing its doors. (Union-Tribune)
In our story on the origin of San Diego’s water lines, we misstated who would be on the hook if the city must replace its lines. It’s ratepayers, not taxpayers.
Our story on the San Diego Unified email settlement mischaracterized what can happen after the five-year settlement period expires. San Diego Unified could enact a shorter email retention period at that time.
The Morning Report was written by Will Huntsberry and Andrew Keatts, and edited by Sara Libby.