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Daily Business Report — Nov. 27, 2012

Coronado First Bank to Merge
With San Diego Private Bank

Coronado First Bank and La Jolla-based Private Bancorp of America and its wholly-owned subsidiary San Diego Private Bank are merging, the institutions reported today. Under the agreement, all of the outstanding shares in San Diego Private Bank will be exchanged for shares of Coronado First Bank at a ratio of 0.545 shares of Coronado First Bank for each share of San Diego Private Bank, for a value of $15.5 million. In a joint statement, Maria Kunac, president and CEO of Coronado First Bank, and Selwyn Isakow, chairman, president and CEO of San Diego Private Bank, said the merger will create a larger and stronger organization focused on growth. Coronado First Bank had $166 million in assets and $28.4 million in capital as of Sept. 30. The bank has branches in Coronado and Downtown San Diego. San Diego Private Bank had $129 million in assets and $13.1 million in capital as of Sept. 30. The new bank will adopt the name of San Diego Private Bank and will be headquartered in Coronado. Isakow will serve as chairman of the Board and Kunac will serve as president and CEO of the surviving bank.

Donna Frye Future at City Hall in Doubt

For a while, it looked like former San Diego City Councilwoman Donna Frye was coming back to City Hall. She was supposed to work with Mayor-elect Bob Filner. But a city law may disrupt the homecoming, KPBS reports. Filner has said he wants to hire Frye as his director of open government. Her role would be to ensure transparency and public access at City Hall. But a city ordinance prevents retired employees from receiving a pension and a salary at the same time, as Frye would. In a statement, City Attorney Jan Goldsmith said it’s possible for Frye to be hired as a provisional employee, which would limit her to working 90 days a year. She may also take an unpaid position. But she would not be able to take a full-time, paid position and still receive her city pension. Mayor Jerry Sanders was able to continue receiving his police department pension after taking office because he was elected to the position. The ordinance makes an exception for people who win an election.

City Would Go Deeply in Red Only if
Council Acts Irresponsibly, COO Says

San Diego would only go back deeply into the red in coming years if the City Council acts irresponsibly, which probably will not happen, the city’s chief operating officer said Monday. City News Service reports that COO Jay Goldstone made the comment during a discussion of competing reports that say the city can look forward to five years of budget surpluses, or face steep deficits. Mayor Jerry Sanders last month issued a five-year budget outlook that projected a $4.9 million surplus for the next fiscal year. That figure would grow to $94.2 million in fiscal 2018. Last week, the city’s Independent Budget Analyst reported that certain outstanding issues, in a worst-case scenario, could wipe out any hopes of surpluses, and cause a deficit of around $84.2 million in the first year. “This would require, however, that the City Council act irresponsibly by committing funds to programs that we can’t afford,” Goldstone told members of the panel. “Based on my seven years with the city, I don’t see that happening.”

Schubach Aviation Adds Luxury Aircraft

Citation II cockpit

The upgraded Citation II jet has been added to Schubach Aviation’s fleet of private luxury aircraft. Company president Henry Schubach said the jet comes with a state-of-the-art avionics package, 110v power and video at each passenger seat, an enclosed lavatory and a refreshment center. The aircraft has a range of 1,200 nautical miles and has a cruising speed of 405 mph. “This Citation II nicely fills a need among our light-jet customers with larger groups who want to stay within a more economic price point for private jet charter,” said Schubach.  It’s ideal for mid-range flights to places such as Cabo San Lucas, Denver and Portland.” The Citation II joins Schubach Aviation’s fleet of 11 private aircraft at its 45,000-square-foot hangar at Palomar Airport in Carlsbad.

Enterprise Zone Experts to Describe Benefits
For Business Owners at Wednesday Forum

Business owners can learn about tax benefits and incentives from Enterprise Zones at two public forums Wednesday in Chula Vista and Carmel Valley. The South County Economic Development Council and San Diego Regional Development Corp. will help host the forums, where business owners can learn about Enterprise Credits and how to qualify, and hear updates to tax laws. The Chula Vista session will take place from 9-11a.m. at the Chula Vista City Hall Council Chambers, 276 Fourth Ave. The Carmel Valley session will take place from 2-4 p.m. at the AMN Healthcare Auditorium, 12400 High Bluff Drive, San Diego. The Enterprise Zone encompasses portions of Chula Vista, National City and the city of San Diego, where businesses can receive tax breaks and other incentives including specialized tax and financial assistance programs as well as assistance in developing and expediting development permits.

Higgs Fletcher & Mack Adds Office
Space to Handle Growth in Attorneys

Higgs Fletcher & Mack, which has grown from 62 attorneys in 2011 to 69 today, has added 3,000 square feet to the 25th floor of the Columbia Center Downtown to accommodate the growth. The addition  includes seven attorney offices, one conference room, three secretarial stations and a paralegal office. The additional space will allow the firm to continue adding attorneys with complimentary practices. “The firm is growing at a steady rate and for that reason we needed more space,” said managing partner John Morrell.  (Photo: John Morell, managing partner of Higgs Fletcher & Mack, center, with Pamela Townsend and Geoff Thorne, law clerks at the firm.)

Union Bank Selects Regional Vice President

Kelly Kline

Kelly Kline has been named a regional vice president in the Business Banking group of Union Bank, overseeing multiple regional sales managers and responsible for business development, portfolio management, client experience, marketing and training goals. Union Bank’s business banking group serves businesses with up to $15 million in annual revenues. Kline has nearly 10 years of experience in the banking industry and most recently served as a vice president and relationship manager of Union Bank’s commercial banking group.  Prior to that, he was a vice president and commercial loan officer for Wells Fargo Bank.

SDSU Financial Planning Program Honored

The financial planning program at the College of Business Administration at San Diego State has been named one of Financial Planning magazine’s “25 Great Schools for Future Financial Planners” in the November issue. SDSU was one of among only eight U.S. business schools recognized by the magazine that offered both a degree program and a certificate program. SDSU’s College of Business Administration was one of the first universities to offer financial planning as part of its academic curriculum in 1980.



We’re seeking nominees for our sixth annual Metro Movers awards. Please submit your nominations by Dec. 13 to Rebeca Page at or fax to her at (858) 759-5755 or mail to SD METRO at P.O. Box 3679, Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067.

The Daily Business Report is produced by SD METRO. Contact: Manny Cruz (619) 287-1865.

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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?

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