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Daily Business Report — Jan. 16, 2013

Mayor Bob Filner

Mayor Outlines Ambitious Vision for San Diego

City News Service — Mayor Bob Filner outlined an ambitious program for San Diego Tuesday night in his first State of the City address, while acknowledging the still-precarious condition of municipal finances. Among the plans Filner announced at the Balboa Theatre in Downtown San Diego were negotiating a five-year labor agreement with the city’s six unions in order to provide future budget stability; revitalizing infrastructure in older, urban neighborhoods; reorganizing the Development Services Department; creating a plan to mitigate the effects of climate change; reforming and streamlining the process of obtaining city permits; and giving the Fire-Rescue Department a new emergency alert system.

Filner announced that the city will open an office in Tijuana on Feb. 1. The following day, Filner will begin holding Saturday morning office hours in the lobby of the City Administration Building so he can talk with constituents, he said.

Filner announced earlier that the San Diego Chargers informed him they will not exercise the escape clause in their contract that would allow them to move to another city. The team also will not complete an application to the National Football League to express interest in moving to Los Angeles, he said.

“The end of redevelopment in California has complicated efforts to find a way to keep the Chargers in San Diego,” Filner told a standing-room only crowd. “Developing a plan that provides a net benefit to taxpayers will not be easy, but I commit to you tonight I will work to make sure that our Bolts don’t bolt.” Filner said he hopes to present the labor agreement to the City Council in April. Its centerpiece would be a freeze on employees using any compensation above base salary when they later compute their retirement benefits, a key provision of a pension reform initiative passed by voters in June.

After the speech, Councilwoman Lorie Zapf told City News Service she agreed that Filner’s agenda was ambitious and hopeful. “Its all going to be tempered by the reality of whatever finances we have, we have to live within the money that comes into the city,” Zapf said. “We’re going to have to prioritize.” However, she said she was disappointed that Filner failed to mention managed competition, a program started by Jerry Sanders to save money by taking competitive bids on city services.

Cubic’s Australian Division Acquires
Australian Defense Company

Cubic Defense Australia, the Australian-based defense systems business of San Diego’s Cubic Corp., has agreed to acquire PS Management Consultants Pty Ltd, an Australian defense firm with strong ties to the training, simulation, communications and range safety customers headquartered in Canberra, the  capital of Australia. PS Management Consultants is an engineering firm with project management expertise in training range design, operations, communications and safety requirements. The company is a supplier to the Australian Defense Forces and holds several contract vehicles that offer Cubic greater access and opportunity to expand its footprint in Australia, according to Mark Horn, general manager of Cubic Defense Australia. “We have worked with PSMC for many years on important Australian and U.S. programs,” saidHorn. “The addition of PSMC will allow us to better serve our Australian and U.S. customers and enhance our ability to address large upcoming training and simulation requirements, while establishing a presence in the national capital region.” PS Management Consultants principals and work force will become Cubic Defense Australian employees and stay with the company.  Cubic Defense Australia provides a range of training services to the ADF based out of the company’s regional headquarters in Townsville, Australia.

SoCal Edison Wants San Onofre
Probe Documents Kept Secret

Southern California Edison wants most of its testimony kept secret in a state investigation into what went wrong with the San Onofre nuclear plant, KPBS reports. In calling for the secret testimony, Edison and SDG&E said they may be required to submit confidential and proprietary information for the state investigation. And some of that information, they said in filings with regulators, might make public competitive details or may violate contracts they have with third parties like Mitsubishi. Mitsubishi manufactured the faulty steam generators at the center of the state’s inquiry. John Geesman, an attorney for the Alliance for Nuclear Responsibility, has objected to Edison’s request. He said if the California Public Utilities Commission agrees with Edison, public interest groups as parties to the state’s investigation will get to see the companies’ testimony only if they sign a nondisclosure agreement. “But we would not be allowed to speak to the press or anyone else who had not signed such a nondisclosure agreement and you as a representative of the media would not have any access to the information,” Geesman said.

Though it’s been shut down since last January, customers spent more than $1 billion for San Onofre in the past year. Part of the state’s inquiry will settle the question of whether ratepayers should continue covering that bill. State regulators did not respond to requests for comment.

Lawyers Club Celebrates Reproductive Rights With Two Events

Lawyers Club of San Diego celebrates the 40th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision with two events this month focusing on reproductive health issues. On Jan. 17, Sandra Fluke, an advocate for reproductive health services, will speak at a noon luncheon at the Bristol Hotel, 1055 First Ave. in Downtown San Diego. The event is open to the public and costs $25 for Lawyers Club members and $40 for nonmembers. Register at www.lawyersclubsasndiego.com. The Coalition for Reproductive Choice’s annual Roe v. Wade Anniversary Dinner is set for Jan. 24 at 6 p.m. at the Joe & Vi Jacobs Center, 404 Euclid Ave., Sasn Diego. Attorney Abby Silverman will be honored with the Coalition’s Defender of Choice Award.

Cancer Research Pioneer Appointed to Head
UC San Diego Women in Surgery Lectureship

Sarah Blair

Cancer research pioneer Sarah Blair, MD, has been appointed head of UC San Diego’s Women in Surgery Lectureship. In 2010, the program was established by the Department of Surgery at UC San Diego Health System with a mission to support the professional development of women surgeons and raise gender awareness. The program consists of a lecture series that aims to educate surgeons, instrument manufacturers, and the general public. As the program’s director, Blair will set up and direct the lectureships and be involved in the program’s fundraising efforts with the ultimate goal of setting up a mentoring program for female physicians. “Female residents represent nearly half of our general surgery program and about a third of general surgery applicants, however, women continue to be underrepresented in leadership positions,” said Blair. “As the program director, I am excited to head an initiative that provides avenues and opportunities for women in medicine to lead. We need to break down the remaining barriers and create a supportive environment to help female surgeons thrive at all levels of their careers.”

Kleege Enterprises Purchases Chula Vista Mobile Home Park

Chula Vista Mobile Home Park

Kleege Enterprises has purchased the 165-space Chula Vista Mobile Home Park for seniors for $11.5 million. The sale of the property, located at 345 C St., was arranged by the CBRE National Manufactured Housing Group. The seller was Chula Vista Mobile Home Park Inc. The park is 97.5 percent occupied. The park is situated on 12.3 acres and consists of 79 double-wide and 83 single-wide spaces. Features include a recreation center with assembly room, service kitchen, billiards room, laundry room and office. Kleege Enterprises recently sold the 138-unit Quail Run apartments in Ramona for $15 million to Conrad Prebys Trust and traded the proceeds for the purchase of Chula Vista Mobile Home Park through a 1031 exchange. Built in 1984, Quail Run consists of 118 two-bedroom units and 20 one-bedroom units. Kleege also purchased the 127,175-square-foot Clairemont Village Shopping Center in Clairemont Mesa.

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The Daily Business Report is produced by SD METRO.

Contact: Manny Cruz (619) 287-1865. manny@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