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Daily Business Report — Feb. 27, 2013

Despite Promises, Downtown San Diego Property
Owners Have Not Received Property Tax Refunds

Last month, KPBS reported that San Diego could owe about 3,000 Downtown property owners hundreds of thousands of dollars in overcharges on their property tax bills. When the story aired, the city said some people would get their money back. But nothing has happened yet, KPBS reported on Tuesday.  The city told residents who were overcharged that they could file claims to get their money back. Safe Haven, a Downtown homeless shelter for the mentally ill, was overcharged about $7,000. The shelter’s executive director, Lesslie Keller, filed a claim with the city, but said she hasn’t gotten a check. The city’s Economic Development Corp., which handles the refunds, said they need additional information from Safe Haven to process its claim. But Keller said despite many attempts, her staff hasn’t been able to talk to anyone at the city. “We have made three phone calls to the city and to date we have not had a response or a call back to explain to us what’s going on with our refund,” she said. “So I would say we’re at this point very discouraged.”

Kathy Casey, a Golden Hill resident who has been fighting the city for a long time to get people’s money back, also filed a claim and has not been refunded. She said she was told by the EDC that her claim would be processed March 1. About 33 claims have been filed so far, and three are currently being processed, according to City Councilman Todd Gloria’s office.

Gaslamp Quarter Archway Rehab
To be Celebrated Thursday Night

A ceremony celebrating the refurbishment of the Gaslamp Quarter archway at Fifth Avenue and L Street will be staged Thursday at 5:30 p.m., followed by partying at Dick’s Last Resort at 6:30 p.m. The event is sponsored by the Gaslamp Quarter Association. Expected to be in attendance and speaking at the ceremony are San Diego City Council President Todd Gloria; Kris Michell, president/CEO of the San Diego Downtown Partnership; Darren Moore, chair of the Gaslamp Quarter Association board of directors; and Matt Greene, regional manager Evolution Hospitality (Hard Rock Hotel).

In 1992, the Gaslamp Quarter Archway was officially completed and dedicated as a declaration that the city of San Diego was committed to the continuing redevelopment of Downtown, according to the association website. “Having endured significant dilapidation from weather and constant vibration from road traffic since its original dedication, the Gaslamp Quarter Archway’s rehabilitation in 2013 was made possible by the efforts of the Gaslamp Quarter Association in conjunction with Downtown San Diego Partnership, Clean & Safe Program.”  The project was managed by Byron Wade, president and CEO of Project Professionals Corp., and completed by West Coast Signs. The owner of West Coast Signs, Patrick Flahive, is the son of the original builder, Roy Flahive, who also consulted on the rehabilitation. The refurbishment cost $45,000.

Board of Supervisors Approve Pilot Study for
Faster Testing of Water Quality at Beaches

City News Service – The San Diego County Board of Supervisors approved a pilot study Tuesday for a faster system of testing water quality at beaches. On April 1, the county will begin a yearlong study on where and when the quantitative polymerase chain reaction testing system, which gives results on bacteria and other pollutants within four hours of testing, could be used. The study method will be used concurrently with the existing system, which involves growing cultures and sometimes requires up to two days to get results. The state-funded water quality testing program has been run by the county Department of Environmental Health since 1999. When the testing finds contaminated water, after sewage spills or rain storms, the DEH posts warning signs at affected beaches. “Tourists need to know if our oceans and bays are safe to swim. Any delay in giving visitors the opportunity to enjoy our beaches puts our tourism economy at risk,” said board chairman Greg Cox said.

Susan Komen Organization to Make Grants
Of More than $1.4 Million in San Diego County

(Repeating to correct the date and survivor information)

Susan G. Komen for the Cure, San Diego, reports that it will grant the most money in its history — over $1.4 million — this year to provide diagnostic mammograms and life-saving support screenings to nearly 10,000 under and uninsured women in San Diego County. The grantees will be announced at an April 18 ceremony at AMN Healthcare. Also, at the award ceremony, Robin Marella will be named the 2013 Honorary Breast Cancer Survivor. Marella is a two-time breast cancer survivor. The organization said that 75 percent of every dollar raised in San Diego stays in San Diego County. The remaining 25 percent funds international breast cancer research.

San Diego Schools Chief to Step Down

San Diego Unified School District Superintendent Bill Kowba will step down on June 30, he announced at Tuesday night’s school board meeting. Kowba led the district for three years. Prior to his selection as superintendent, he served as the district’s chief financial officer for four years. His contract expires on June 30 and he is leaving on good terms with the school board. At the meeting, his announcement was met with a standing ovation. “It is after much reflection and consultation with my family and with great mixed emotions that I make this decision,” Kowba said at the meeting. “I want to thank you for the honor and privilege of leading this outstanding large urban educational institution.”

(Voice of San Diego)

California Endowment CEO to be Honored
as City Heights Philanthropist of the Year

Robert K. Ross, president and chief executive officer for The California Endowment, will be honored as City Heights Philanthropist of the Year by the City Heights Community Development Corp. at its annual gala April 20 at the Holiday Inn Hotel (formerly the Holiday Inn on the Bay). In 2010,  Ross launched the City Heights “Building Healthy Communities” site with First Lady Michelle Obama, in partnership with her Let’s Move! campaign to end childhood obesity. The event took place at New Roots Community Farm, a 2.3-acre project in City Heights that helps farmers grow healthy produce for their families and neighbors. The California Endowment has since awarded BHC projects in City Heights $10.5 million, including more than $500,000 in grants to City Heights CDC.

NAWBO San Diego Seminar

NAWBO San Diego will continue its seminar series on March 8 with a presentation from Felena Hanson on “The Marketing Collaboration Revolution.”  The seminar will be held at Brandman University, 7460 Mission Valley Road, San Diego, from noon to 1:30 p.m. In the workshop-style presentation, Hanson will talk about keys to collaboration marketing, local case studies and action plans. NAWBO members have the option of attending this seminar for free (without lunch) or $10 (with a box lunch).  The fee for visitors (which includes lunch) is $25.

On March 20, NAWBO will present a program featuring Mindy Bortness, talent management professional, from 7:30 to 9 a.m. at the Hera Hub-Mission Valley, 8885 Rio San Diego Drive, No. 237.

Courtney Roach Joins Gerson Law Firm

Courtney Roach

Courtney Gregory Roach has joined Gerson Law Firm APC to focus on commercial real estate and business transactions. Prior to joining the firm, Roach was an associate with Gordon & Rees LLP’s San Diego office. She  received her J.D. from the University of San Diego School of Law, graduating cum laude. She was also a USD Order of the Coif member. She earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from UCLA, graduating cum laude in 2005

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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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