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Daily Business Report — Dec. 20, 2010

Two San Diego Attorneys Appointed to Judgeships

Michael Groch

Steven Stone

Michael S. Groch, a deputy district attorney in San Diego, and Steven E. Stone, an assistant U.S. attorney here, have been appointed to the San Diego County Superior Court bench by Gov. Schwarzenegger. Groch, 44, has been a deputy district attorney since 1993. Prior to that, he served as a deputy district attorney for the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office from 1992 to 1993. Groch earned a law degree from California Western School of Law and a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Yuri Hofmann. Groch is a Democrat.

Stone, 39, an assistant U.S. attorney since 2002. He served as an associate for Pillsbury, Winthrop from 2000 to 2002, Parker, Milliken, Clark, O’Hara and Samuelian from 1999 to 2000 and Sonnenschein, Nath and Rosenthal from 1996 to 1999. Stone earned a law degree from the University of Southern California School of Law and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Redlands. He fills the vacancy created by the resignation of Judge DeAnn M. Salcido. Stone is a Republican.

Jobs Up 3,500 Over Month — Down 200 Over the Year

The unemployment rate in the San Diego County was 10.4 percent in November, up from a revised 10.3 percent in October and below the year-ago estimate of 10.4 percent, the state Employment Development Department reported. California’s jobless rate was 12.4 percent and the nation’s was 9.3 percent for the same period.

Between October and November:

Total nonfarm employment increased from 1,215,700 to 1,219,400, an increase of 3,700 jobs. Agricultural employment declined by 200 jobs, or 2.1 percent, partially offsetting overall employment growth.

• Trade, transportation, and utilities posted the greatest month-over gain, adding 3,100 jobs. Job growth in retail trade (up 3,200) was offset by a decline of 100 jobs in wholesale trade. Employment in transportation, warehousing, and utilities remained unchanged over the month.

• Government increased by 1,600 jobs. Local government (up 1,500) accounted for roughly 94 percent of the employment growth in this sector, all from local government education (up 1,500). State government increased by 100 jobs, while federal government reported no change in employment levels.

• Leisure and hospitality recorded the greatest month-over decline, down 900 jobs. Accommodation and food services declined by 500 jobs, followed by a decrease of 400 jobs in arts, entertainment, and recreation.

Between November 2009 and November 2010:

Total nonfarm employment gained 100 jobs.Agricultural employment decreased by 300 jobs, or 3.2 percent.

• Professional and business services reported the greatest year-over gain, adding 3,500 jobs. Administrative and support and waste services increased by 3,400 jobs, primarily from employment services (up 3,300 jobs). Professional, scientific, and technical services added 300 jobs, while management of companies and enterprises declined by 200 jobs.

• Educational and health services increased by 3,100 jobs. Health care and social assistance (up 3,100 jobs) contributed to all of the job growth in this sector, mainly from ambulatory health care services (up 2,700).

• Construction posted the greatest year-over decline, down 2,100 jobs. Construction of buildings (down 1,400 jobs) contributed to two-thirds of the job loss in this sector. Specialty trade contractors declined by 500 jobs, followed by a decrease of 200 jobs in heavy and civil engineering construction.

Downtown Library Focus of Talk

Mel Katz, chairman of the San Diego Public Library Foundation, will give a talk on the new central library’s impact on San Diego at a free presentation Jan. 4 from noon to 1 p.m. at the Sheila Hardin Downtown Information Center at Horton Plaza. The Sound Bites program is sponsored by the Centre City Development Corp.

Gen-Probe Acquires GTI Diagnostics

Gen-Probe Inc. has acquired GTI Diagnostics, a privately held specialty diagnostics company focused on the transplantation, blood bank and specialty coagulation markets, for $53 million in cash. Gen-Probe acquired the company from the Riverside Company, a global private equity firm, and from individual investors who include the company’s founders and management. “Acquiring GTI enables us to broaden and strengthen our transplant diagnostics business,” said Carl Hull, Gen-Probe’s president and chief executive officer. “In addition, the acquisition gives us access to growing coagulation and transfusion-related blood bank products that we can sell to our current customer base.” GTI develops and manufactures the human leukocyte antigen antibody detection products sold by Gen-Probe under its LIFECODES brand.

SANDAG Board Elects New Chairman

Encinitas Deputy Mayor Jerome Stocks has been been elected as the new chair of the SANDAG board of directors. He replaces former Escondido Mayor Lori Holt Pfeiler. Santee Councilman Jack Dale was elected first vice chair and Imperial Beach Mayor Jim Janney was elected second vice chair.

PRSA Chapter Installs Officers

April Bolduc, communications manager for San Diego Gas & Electric, has been installed as president of the San Diego/Imperial Counties chapter of the Public Relations Society of America. Other members of the board are Anne Stephany, director of public relations for California Loews Hotels, president-elect; Sara Wacker, vice president of c3 Communications, immediate past president; Erin Coller, senior account executive with Formula PR, secretary; and Tricia Whittemore, account supervisor, Porter Novelli, treasurer.

The Daily Business Report is produced by REP Publishing Inc., publisher of SD METRO, the North Park News, Kensington News and the West Coast Craftsman. (619) 906-4104.

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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