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Daily Business Report — Oct. 28, 2009

San Diego Economy Rises

The University of San Diego’s Index of Leading Economic Indicators for San Diego County rose 1.0 percent in September. For the fifth month in a row, a strong rise in local consumer confidence led the move to the upside.  Building permits and the outlook for the national economy also were up sharply during the month. On the downside, initial claims for unemployment insurance were significantly negative, and there were smaller decreases in local stock prices and help wanted advertising, reported Alan Gin, economics professor and author of the Index.

September’s gain was the sixth straight monthly increase in the USD Index and its strongest increase since it turned positive in April. The outlook continues to be for the local economy to remain weak for the rest of 2009 but to hit a bottom in the first half of 2010. This is in terms of jobs and employment, which typically is a lagging indicator. “Economic activity may already be picking up, but businesses tend to be cautious in terms of hiring new workers until they are sure that a recovery has taken hold,” said Gin.  As a result, the local unemployment rate is expected to approach and may top the 11 percent mark before improving.

September’s decrease puts the USD Index for the county at 103.4, up from August’s revised reading of 102.5.

Balancing Building a City with Water Conservation

The San Diego Historical Society will present a panel talk Oct. 29 on the ramifications of mandatory water restrictions. It will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the Museum of San Diego History in Balboa Park. The event is free for SDHS members and $10 for others. David Perkins, executive vice president of Pacific Coast Steel, will moderate a panel comprised of Jim Barrett, director of the city of San Diego Public Utilities Department; Scott Molloy, public policy adviser for the Building Industry Association of San Diego County; and Robert Yamada, water resources planning manager for the San Diego County Water Authority. For more information, call (619) 232-6203, Ext. 129.

Joshua Hanna Rejoins Gafcon Inc.

Joshua Hanna has rejoined Gafcon Inc. as business development manager. He held that position from 1997 to 2004. In his new position, Hanna is responsible for business development for Gafcon’s construction management and technical services departments, as well as heading up Gafcon’s asset management/distressed property services. He is based in the firm’s Downtown San Diego headquarters. Prior to his return to Gafcon, Hanna spent five years as vice president of projects for Anka Developments Inc. in San Diego, where he managed all aspects of major residential and mixed-use construction projects for the privately held development company based in Sydney, Australia. During Hanna’s previous tenure with Gafcon, he managed the construction of Allegro Towers, a 28-story mixed-use project, and Market Square Manor, a high-density, mid-rise project.

David Cochran Joins Allgire General Contractors

David Cochran has joined Allgire General Contractors Inc. in Carlsbad as a construction team project superintendent. He has worked for more than 50 years in the construction industry in Southern California. His past experience includes 35 years as superintendent overseeing large construction projects such as car dealerships, retail shopping centers and mixed use projects.  In his new role, Cochran will be involved in field management including quality control and the scheduling of subcontractors.

Port District Asks for Program Suggestions

The Port of San Diego is soliciting suggestions for events or programs that promote commerce, navigation, fisheries and recreation in the tideland cities of San Diego, Chula Vista, Coronado, Imperial Beach and National City. The best suggestions could qualify for cash funding and/or Port services. The deadline for applications is Nov. 6 at 5 p.m. Examples of events or programs that have received funding in the past include events or programs relating to the Port’s goals, start-up events or programs that have the potential to become self-funded projects, programs that promote environmental awareness, educational programs, or programs that promote cultural and artistic enrichment. For information, calling the Port’s Communications and Community Services Department at (619) 686-6551.

The ‘Stickley Road Show’ Comes to San Diego

Mike Danial, corporate historian for the L. & J.G. Stickley Co., will give a presentation tonight on the company’s history and the five Stickley brothers who championed Arts & Crafts design in the United States over a century ago. It will be at 7 p.m. in the La Jolla home of Sheryll Jackman at 7509 Girard Ave. A social hour will be at 6 p.m. and there will be refreshments. Arts & Crafts bungalow homes are ubiquitous throughout San Diego County — particularly in the inner city areas of North Park, South Park, Golden Hill and Mission Hills. But you will also find them in Coronado, La Jolla, Del Mar and Escondido. The idea behind the bungalow – and the furniture designed to complement          them — was in living simply, with integrity.  It is a concept that is back in vogue in an era of living honestly and without pretension. For information and reservations, call (619) 454-0866.

Fundraiser Scheduled to Benefit Katrina Survivors

San Diego State University’s College Students for New Orleans (CSNO) will host an art auction fundraiser on Nov. 14 — “Art Relief: A Creative Road to Recovery” — with profits subsidizing the costs of sending student volunteers to New Orleans to rebuild houses of Hurricane Katrina survivors. The event will run from 6 to 9:30 p.m. at El Centro Cultural de la Raza in Balboa Park. The auction will feature works donated from over 35 local artists, a raffle for various prizes and live music.

It has been four years since Hurricane Katrina struck and took thousands of lives, and yet there are still tens of thousands of people without homes in the greater New Orleans area. This event not only raises money to send volunteers to help rebuild people’s homes and lives, but it is also intended to raise awareness about the ongoing suffering and struggle that Katrina survivors are still facing today.

CSNO is a student-run, nonprofit volunteer organization based at SDSU. The group has sent over 150 volunteers to New Orleans to date, with another trip with 20 volunteers scheduled for January, 2010. For more information on the group, see the Website: http://studentsvolunteer.googlepages.com. For more information about the event, see the Website: www.sdsu-csno.com/artrelief or contact Maia Neubig at maianew@gmail.com.

Interfaith Candlelight Vigil

The San Diego Rescue Mission will hold its eighth annual Interfaith Candlelight Vigil on Nov. 1 to honor the homeless people who died this year in San Diego. A procession to the vigil will depart from the San Diego Rescue Mission at 3:15 p.m. and walk about a mile to the County Administration Building. The candlelight vigil program at the county building begins at 4 p.m. The interfaith event is designed to create awareness for the 10,000 men, women and children living each day homeless in San Diego. The Rescue Mission is at 120 Elm St., San Diego.

About The Daily Business Report

The Daily Business Report is a product of REP Publishing Inc., publisher of San Diego Metropolitan magazine and the North Park News. Our offices are in Cabrillo Plaza, 3990 Old Town Ave., Suite A-201, in Old Town. To reach editorial, call (619) 906-4104. For advertising, dial (619) 906-4105. The fax is (619) 906-4106. Send editorial material via e-mail to manny@sandiegometro.com. For advertising, send to cyndi@sandiegometro.com.

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We Want Your Opinions on San Diego’s Big Issues In the coming months, Probosky Research (one of California’s leading opinion research firms) will continue its partnership with SD METRO to survey San Diego residents about topics of interest to our readers. We’d like to throw open the door for suggestions for topics. What do you want to know? What do you think you know, but aren’t sure? What are you certain you know, but want to prove it beyond doubt? Ideally, we’d like to see questions that have to do with public policy.

Some areas may include Mayor Filner’s first 100 days job performance, should the city be responsible for economic growth and the creation of new jobs, how important are infrastructure improvements to our daily lives (streets and bridges, etc.), how important is water independence, how satisfied are residents with public transit or how do city residents value Balboa Park and other open spaces? Do you believe the City Council should revive the Plaza de Panama plan for Balboa Park?

You can email Probolsky Research directly with your ideas: info@probolskyresearch.com