101 Ash St. / File photo by Adriana Heldiz

Ex-city real estate adviser Jason Hughes pleaded guilty Thursday to a single violation of a state conflict-of-interest law and agreed to pay the city $9.4 million, the amount the city’s ex-101 Ash St. landlord paid him years ago for his work on two city lease deals.

Hughes will now spend a year on probation and pay another $400 in court fines. But as our Lisa Halverstadt reports, that guilty plea could also put his real estate license in peril.

A spokesman for the state Department of Real Estate told Halverstadt the agency will decide whether it should take action against Hughes’ broker’s license after receiving an official notification of his conviction.

In her latest story on the fallout of the city’s 101 Ash St. debacle, Halverstadt also downloads District Attorney Summer Stephan’s rationale for agreeing to charge Hughes with a misdemeanor, which also allowed him to skip the Thursday morning hearing.

Read the full story here.

The Kids Are Not Going to Class 

Henry Cole, 5 years old, UTK student, walks to Stephen C. Foster Elementary School with his mother on Jan. 30, 2023.
Henry Cole, 5, walks to Stephen C. Foster Elementary School with his mother on Jan. 30, 2023. / Photo by Ariana Drehsler

The pandemic led to an explosion of chronic absenteeism, and while not all school schools were equally impacted, chronic absenteeism in some grades has risen to even more alarming levels than others. 

Jakob McWhinney reports in a new story that nearly half of all kindergarteners, and nearly 40 percent of children in grades 1-3 at San Diego Unified, are now chronically absent — that’s defined as missing 10 percent or more school days in a year. 

How that compares: Those numbers exceed the district’s 33 percent average — which is higher than the county and state’s average in every set of grade levels except high school. 

The percent of children who are missing class is concerning to experts who say it can have serious consequences on their educational success. 

“For the most part, when kids get behind in those early years, they stay behind. And if anything, they get more behind,” one expert told Voice of San Diego. 

Read the full story here. 

In Other News 

  • Thirty six children were born with syphilis last year, up from 30 a year earlier. Public health officials are alarmed by the increase. (Union-Tribune)
  • The president of a union representing San Diego taxi drivers is suing the San Diego Police Department, alleging his Constitutional rights were violated last year when officers detained him with guns drawn last year while he was walking to work. (Union-Tribune) 
  • Local residents gathered this week to voice their opposition to San Diego Gas & Electric’s request to raise rates over the next four years. (KPBS)
  • A potentially deadly fungus that has worried CDC and local public health officials has been identified in San Diego County. (NBC 7 San Diego)
  • San Diego hospitals need more nurses. (KPBS)

The Morning Report was written by Lisa Halverstadt, Andrea Lopez-Villafaña and Andrew Keatts. It was edited by Andrea Lopez-Villafaña. 

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