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Daily Business Report-Oct. 8, 2013

Daily Business Report-Oct. 8, 2013

 Gov. Brown Signs Bill to Create Snoopy License Plate

Gov. Jerry Brown Jr. signed legislation authored by Assembly Majority Leader Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) to create a Snoopy special interest license plate to support California museums. The bill, AB 482, moves the California Cultural and Historical Endowment from the State Library to the Natural Resources Agency and lays the foundation to launch the special license plate. More than 10,000 Californians have already expressed interest in purchasing a Snoopy special interest license plate by completing an online form at A statewide marketing campaign will be launched soon to pre-sell Snoopy license plates and the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will begin issuing the plates upon receipt of 7,500 paid applications. The plates start at $50.

Each special license plate will feature a reproduction of an original Snoopy drawing by Charles Schulz, doing a happy dance (probably in anticipation of suppertime). The proceeds from sales of the Snoopy license plates will establish a competitive grant program to support the state’s museums.

Construction on Airport Terminal Linking

Tijuana to San Diego is off the Ground

It’s been in the works for more than 20 years, but last month, construction finally began on the so-called cross-border terminal that will let travelers cross from the Tijuana airport directly into San Diego, KPBS reports. The project will include a bridge of more than 500 feet spanning from the airport and across the border fence to a new customs station soon to be built on the San Diego side in a empty field in Otay Mesa. “It has been a very long time coming, but it has been very, very welcome,” said Cindy Gompper-Graves, director of the South County Economic Development Council. The cross-border terminal is slated to be operational by the end of next year. It will allow only ticketed airline passengers who pay a fee to cross the bridge in either direction. Because of the restricted use by passengers and the toll to use the bridge, developers expect to virtually eliminate the long border waits to get back into San Diego, which many travelers from the U.S. endure when using the Tijuana airport.

Gompper-Graves and other supporters of the project think it will be a boon to cross-border tourism, and just as importantly, to investment by foreign manufacturing companies that want to open factories in Tijuana and distribution warehouses in Otay Mesa. “I think we all agree that those border wait times are a huge deterrent to companies looking to locate on both sides of the border,” Gompper-Graves said. “This will make it easier for them to do that. This will make it more accessible for them to access other markets.”

Though construction has already begun on the Tijuana side, the bridge does have its detractors, among them, airport taxi drivers. They said more than half of their clients ask to be driven to one of the two existing border crossings, a trip that can cost up to $15. They expect most of that business to be wiped out once the bridge opens, allowing people to cross into San Diego on foot, directly from the airport.

Living Coast Discovery Center Gets $25,000 from SDG&E

San Diego Gas & Electric Co. has donated $25,000 to the Living Coast Discovery Center in Chula Vista, which is trying to close a $200,000 funding gap to keep from closing permanently. Without that goal, the facility will be forced to close to the public on Oct. 28 in preparation for a permanent closure at the end of December. “This donation from SDG&E is a tremendous first step in keeping our mission going,” said Living Coast Discovery Center Chief Operating Officer Ben Vallejos. SDG&E is the Living Coast’s largest corporate partner, having contributed more than $300,000 in sponsorships and grants to support environmental conservation and education programs at the center over the years.

 Personnel Moves 

Jim Hansen Joins Dempsey Construction + Legacy Building Services

Jim Hansen

Jim Hansen

Jim Hansen has joined Dempsey Construction + Legacy Building Services as a superintendent. Hansen begins work immediately on a ground up hotel development in Mission Valley. Before joining Dempsey + Legacy, Hansen worked for Lusardi Construction Co. since 1988. Most recently, he served as superintendent on the extensive Flower Hill Promenade renovation, located at Interstate 5 and Via De La Valle. Hansen’s experience includes the construction of corporate headquarters, office buildings, office and industrial parks, retail shopping centers, hotels multi-family housing complexes and heavy civil projects.

Chula Vistan Hired to Head State GOP Efforts on Hispanics

Francis Barraza of Chula Vista, a long-time Republican Party activist, has been hired by the California Republican Party to head Hispanic engagement efforts in the state. Barraza, former executive director of the Republican Party of San Diego County,  will lead a team charged with building a grassroots infrastructure and engaging with voters at community events, as well as strengthening ties with Hispanic Republicans.

Monique Medley Joins Lee & Associates

Monique Medley has joined Lee & Associates, specializing in North County multi-tenant property leasing and sales. Medley previously was with Cassidy Turley in Carlsbad for more than 8 years. She began her commercial real estate career at CB Richard Ellis where she was a senior marketing associate.

Level 10 Construction Opens San Diego Office

Mike Conroy

Mike Conroy

Sunnyvale-based Level 10 Construction Co. has opened an office in San Diego and named Mike Conroy vice president of operations. The office is located at 4660 La Jolla Village Drive, Suite 620. Conroy, formerly a project executive with Rudolph and Sletten’s San Diego office, has more than 15 years of construction experience in San Diego, and has managed multiple projects. The Level 10 San Diego office is currently working on upgrades to three existing single-story buildings at Summit Rancho Bernardo, a corporate campus with Class A office space located on 105 acres in Rancho Bernardo.


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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.

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