Oceanside City Hall / Photo by Megan Wood

The findings from an internal investigation into claims made against elected Oceanside City Treasurer Victor Roy were released Thursday and only three of the long list of allegations made against him could be verified.

The report found that some of the allegations were sustained, meaning Roy violated some of the city’s codes of ethics and conduct, and its rules and regulations for personnel. But most of the claims could not be proven or verified.

The allegations first surfaced in a June 6 email that has since been circulating online.

Treasury Manager Steve Hodges accused Roy of several misdeeds including making risky investments, viewing inappropriate materials at a public library, illegally asking Hodges to donate to his campaign and more.

Investigators recommended that the city take the necessary disciplinary and training actions. 

Read more about the findings here.

Related: Read the latest North County Report for a full breakdown of all of the controversy that has unfolded in Oceanside’s Treasury Department over the past few months, including details on the allegations and the twist we didn’t see coming.

San Diego To Explore Full Public Power Takeover

Power lines along an alley in the Barrio Logan neighborhood on Nov. 2, 2021. / Photo by Adriana Heldiz

The city of San Diego took one step closer toward full government takeover of its privately-owned power utility Thursday. 

The San Diego City Council’s Environment Committee approved a $3 million contract to NewGen Strategies & Solutions LLC to study how the city might eventually buy-out its private power provider, San Diego Gas and Electric. The full City Council has to pass the contract before that work can begin. 

After a contentious battle over whether the city should renew its franchise agreement with its investor-owned utility, San Diego eventually signed up for another 20 years with SDG&E. While that dashed public power proponents’ dreams of a full takeover of the local energy grid, a contingent of councilmembers swore to keep the option on the table. 

Councilmembers Sean Elo-Rivera, Monica Montgomery Steppe and Joe La Cava set up an Energy Independence Fund to bank some of the $80 million SDG&E had to pay from investors’ pockets to eventually win the 20-year contract. The money could be used to pay for a public power study or as a savings account that the city could tap to pay its way out of the franchise fee contract if it wanted.

“Last year during franchise agreement discussions, it was evident San Diegans, including myself, wanted to see the city take every step to deliver affordable energy at the best value,” said Environment Committee Chair La Cava during Thursday’s meeting, who also sits on the San Diego Community Power board. “Maybe this can be done through the current investor-owned utility. Maybe it’s best done through public power. There’s only one way to find out.”

Read more here. 

Gloria, Councilmembers Set Stage for Civic Center Redevelopment Talks

101 Ash St. / Photo by Adriana Heldiz

Mayor Todd Gloria is forming a citizen’s committee to collect public input on how to redevelop the six blocks around City Hall, an area that includes the recently acquired 101 Ash St. and Civic Center Plaza buildings.

The Union-Tribune, which broke the news on the Civic Core Revitalization Citizens Committee, reported that the group’s work will set the stage for a formal solicitation process predicted to kick off next year and will conform with the state’s Surplus Land Act. The group’s first public meeting will be Monday.

City Council President Sean Elo-Rivera and Councilmembers Monica Montgomery Steppe and Raul Campillo also issued a Thursday memo to Gloria requesting some specific analyses ahead of a Oct. 31 deadline the City Council gave city staff to present a plan for the Civic Center redevelopment process. Among the asks: the potential for conditions requiring at least 25 percent of homes in the new development to be affordable and for single-room occupancy units to be owned and operated by the San Diego Housing Commission.

The councilmembers also want a breakdown of pros and cons of a “super notice of availability” of city properties including scandal-plagued 101 Ash St., a shuttered indoor skydiving facility turned homeless service hub and a city maintenance yard in Golden Hill.

In Other News 

  • Today is the last day to purchase your Politifest ticket before prices go up! This is your chance to talk to leaders, experts and newsmakers ahead of the November election. Click here to register.
  • What is San Diego going to do about Mission Bay’s last remaining marsh? Now it has four separate proposals on the table, including one Mayor Todd Gloria unveiled in January as his preferred plan. San Diego committed to adding 700 acres of marshland by 2035 as part of its Climate Action Plan but this particular part of Mission Beach is up against other recreational uses, namely, RV camping. (Union-Tribune)
  • KPBS reports that parents and students of San Dieguito Union High School District are raising concerns about transphobic comments made on a Facebook page started by one of the district’s board members.
  • The federal government granted $150 million to help build the new Otay Mesa border crossing known as Otay Mesa East or Otay II. (Union-Tribune)
  • Santee leaders approved a controversial 3,000 home development  despite concerns over building in a wildfire-prone area via a method that blocks residents from challenging the move at the ballot box. (Union-Tribune)

The Morning Report was written by Tigist Layne, MacKenzie Elmer and Lisa Halverstadt. It was edited by Andrea Lopez-Villafaña.

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