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Daily Business Report-Sept. 18, 2013

Daily Business Report-Sept. 18, 2013

The community-developed plan will be the first update in Barrio Logan in more than 30 years.

Barrio Logan Community

Plan Update Approved

The Environmental Health Coalition is applauding the San Diego City Council’s approval Tuesday of a new community plan update for Barrio Logan. The community developed plan — known as Alternate 1 — breaks a 30-year history of toxic land use planning that allowed houses, parks and schools to intermingle with polluting industrial properties, the coalition said.

“The newly approved plan will finally separate industrial establishments and residential neighborhoods in the interest of breathable air, affordable community housing and support for the maritime workforce,” the coalitions aid in a release.

Barrio Logan’s newly approved community plan designates a heavy industrial zone away from homes and schools.  “Barrio Logan deserves this community-approved update that protects its residents’ health without sacrificing jobs and protects its residents’ jobs without sacrificing health and quality of life,” said Georgette Gómez, associate director of the coalition and a Barrio Logan native. “Alternative 1 ends decades of environmental injustice by placing uses on the right path toward a better quality of life.”

Civic San Diego Arranges Financing for Construction

Of a New Copley-Price Family YMCA in City Heights

Construction of a new Copley-Price Family YMCA in City Heights has been made possible by funding provided to the YMCA of San Diego County through a New Market Tax Credit loan arranged by Civic San Diego, the successor agency to the Centre City Development Corp.  The new, 53,000-square-foot YMCA at Fairmount Avenue and El Cajon Boulevard will have an aquatics center, a fitness center, group exercise studios, a teen center, a gymnasium, a soccer arena, a computer lab, a child-care center, a demonstration kitchen as well as a community meeting room.

Civic San Diego was able to combine this funding with state and federal grants and charitable contributions previously raised by the YMCA, including Price Charities’ donation of the land, to make the long-planned project a reality, the agency said in a release.

Civic San Diego formed the Civic San Diego Economic Growth and Neighborhood Investment Fund in 2012 to become eligible to secure New Market Tax Credit funds to revitalize underserved areas. The new financing tool was necessary after Gov. Brown eliminated redevelopment agencies across California.

Then in April of this year, the U.S. Treasury Department announced that Civic San Diego had received a tax credit allocation of $35 million. The YMCA facility is the first beneficiary of this allocation. With the Copley-Price Family YMCA, Civic San Diego provided $23 million in New Market Tax Credits that were then purchased by US Bank to provide a low-interest loan of $5 million.

City Council Approves Big Castlerock Housing Development

The San Diego City Council has unanimously approved a housing development project at the San Diego-Santee border, which will eventually be either annexed into Santee or remain part of San Diego. The council cleared the way for the 203 acres of the Castlerock Project  — which will include 283 single-family homes, 147 multi-family homes, a four-acre public park, trails and 94 acres of open space — to be annexed by the city of Santee. The council could have retained the project area within San Diego’s boundaries. City staff recommended allowing annexation because the project will have a greater impact on the East County city, and the location across the street from West Hills High School is far from existing city of San Diego infrastructure. City of Santee Planning Director Melanie Kush told the council that her city supports annexation of the site, which is north of Mast Boulevard, between Medina Drive and West Hills Parkway. Upon completion, the development is expected to house more than 1,000 residents, according to city documents. Reported by Santee Patch

Committee to Take Up Future of Ambulance Service

The future of ambulance services in San Diego is scheduled to be taken up by the City Council’s Public Safety and Neighborhood Services Committee today, City News Service reports. The council approved a one-year contract extension in June with Rural/Metro, which handles emergency medical services in conjunction with the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department. However, the company subsequently declared bankruptcy. Before Bob Filner resigned as mayor last month, city officials decided to put the ambulance contract out to competitive bidding. The mayor’s office is scheduled to provide an update on the process at the committee meeting

Sandra Brower Joins Higgs Fletcher & Mack as Partner

Sandra Brower

Sandra Brower

Attorney Sandra J. Brower, a specialist in eminent domain litigation for public agencies and private owners, has joined Higgs Fletcher & Mack as a partner. Brower previously was with the law firm of Sullivan & Hill. She served as an attorney for San Diego County, representing the county, special districts and the Department of Planning and Land Use in litigation and real estate matters. Brower also served as a mediator in eminent domain and related real estate matters. She is a member of Lawyers Club of San Diego and the Real Property and Civil Litigation Sections of the San Diego County Bar Association. She is a graduate of San Diego State and earned her law degree from the University of San Diego School of Law.

Higgs Fletcher & Mack Attorney to Receive Honor

Richard Shaw

Richard Shaw

The San Diego County Bar Association’s first “SDCBA Taxation Section Award” will be presented to Richard Shaw, an attorney with Higgs Fletcher & Mack, for making a significant contribution in tax law. Shaw will be presented with the Taxation Law Section Award at a special reception on Oct. 24 at the SDCBA Bar Center. A nationally recognized business and tax attorney, Shaw has been a member of the SDCBA and member of the SDCBA Taxation Law Section for over 40 years. He is a California Certified Specialist in Taxation Law, specializing in business and tax planning, estate planning, and tax controversy.

San Diego Ad Club Establishes New Awards Program

The San Diego Ad Club announced that it has received 63 nominees for its new “Brand Diego Awards,” which will showcase excellence in each facet of the industry — agencies, brands, media and affiliated partner companies. The club also has received nominees for its annual Paula Sullivan Lifetime Achievement Award. The Brand Diego Award honorees will be announced at an Oct. 17 event at 5:30 p.m. at The Prado in Balboa Park. For more, call the Ad Club at (619) 255-2281.

Keynote Speaker Added to Skylight Client Conference

Dr. Kevin M. Fickenscher, president and CEO of the American Medical Informatics Association and author of “Toto’s Reflections: The Leadership Lessons from The Wizard of Oz,” has been added as a keynote speaker at the seventh annual Skylight Client Conference Nov. 20-22 in San Diego. Fickenscher joins fellow keynote speakers Dr. Bridget Duffy, chief medical officer for Vocera Communications, and Colleen Sweeney, founder and owner of Sweeney Healthcare Enterprises. The conference is sponsored by San Diego-based Skylight Healthcare Systems.

Westcore Properties Acquires Denver Industrial Land

San Diego-based Westcore Properties has acquired two industrial properties in Denver for $29 million. The two properties encompass nearly 450,000 square feet of industrial space. Westcore owns more than $1.8 billion in property and leases 1.1 million square feet of office space in Colorado.


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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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