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Daily Business Report-May 14, 2014

Daily Business Report-May 14, 2014

Rendering of the Betty & Bob Beyster Institute for Nurshing Research, Advance Practice and Simulation.

Construction Starts on Advanced

Nursing Research Complex at USD

Construction has started on the Betty & Bob Beyster Institute for Nursing Research, Advance Practice and Simulation — the first of its kind in the country — that will specialize in health research for women, children, elders, veterans and palliative care patients. DPR Construction, the contractor, said the institute will be completed in August 2015.

The 29,349-square-foot, three-story institute will house University of San Diego’s clinical nursing research program and create training space for residing nurse scientists, as well as a Simulation and Standardized Patient Nursing Laboratory for advanced practice registered nurses.

Designed to conform to USD’s 16th century Spanish Renaissance architecture, the addition will include construction of a courtyard and a connecting bridge to the school’s existing building. The first floor will house a simulation facility, including primary care exam rooms, acute care hospital rooms and a home care space. Students will work with computerized mannequins and trained actor patients in a simulated care environment which will additionally be equipped with audio-visual to properly monitor students’ performances.

The second floor will include expandable classrooms and a faculty suite while the third floor will be dedicated entirely to research and doctoral student education. The Kathryn S. Krause Doctoral Research Library and Study, additional classrooms and a research center will also be housed on the third floor.

Gov. Brown  Releases $156.2 Billion

Budget Plan, Ups Medi-Cal Spending

Gov. Jerry Brown

Gov. Jerry Brown

Gov. Jerry Brown released a revised, $156.2 billion budget plan Tuesday, proposing to spend the bulk of a state windfall to cover vastly expanded rolls in the state’s Medi-Cal program. The May revision reflects the state’s best projection of revenues for the coming fiscal year and touches off a rush of budget negotiations at the Capitol ahead of the adoption of an annual spending plan in June.

The budget replaces a $154.9 billion spending plan Brown proposed in January. It included modest increases for social service programs, but also billions of dollars to address long-term debt.

Brown’s new plan says 1.4 million more people than projected in January signed up for Medi-Cal under the Obamacare roll out this year, which will cost the state about $1.2 billion more than the governor’s predicted five months ago. Brown’s budget also confirmed that state revenue had grown enough to trigger a 2 percent pay increase for most state employees beginning July 1.

After releasing the budget plan Tuesday morning, Brown, who is running for re-election, hit the road to promote the plan in Los Angeles and San Diego.

San Diego Home Price Gains Slow to Single Digits

For the first time in nearly two years, annual home-price appreciation in San Diego County is down to the single digits.

Last month, the median price for a home sold in the county was $435,000, up 8.7 percent from the $400,000 median in April 2013, real estate tracker DataQuick reported Tuesday. It was the lowest year-over-year appreciation since a 7.9 percent gain in August 2012. But the latest housing figures show just how much price appreciation has slowed. In June, price gains reached 24.1 percent.

“Double-digit price appreciation is not sustainable,” said Mark Goldman, a loan officer and real-estate lecturer at San Diego State University. “But now we’re back on track, we’re back to a more ordinary level of pricing. Pricing has approached an equilibrium where it ought to be based on income, interest rates, employment, all the stuff that drives the housing market.” Goldman says price gains of about 3 percent should be the norm.

While price appreciation continued to slow, home sales picked up drastically from March to April, the prime buying season. Last month, 3,664 properties in the county changed hands, a jump of 607 homes from March. That’s the biggest sales increase from a March to an April since the Great Recession.

Most of the sales in April were in downtown, Rancho Bernardo, Carmel Valley and Eastlake, which each sold about 95 homes.

— U-T San Diego

Read more…

The Rotary Bat unmanned helicopter

The Rotary Bat unmanned helicopter

Northrop Grumman Teams With Yamaha

Motor Corp. to Develop Unmanned Helicopter

Northrop Grumman Corp. and Yamaha Motor Corp. have joined together to develop an unmanned helicopter, the Rotary Bat, which will be used for search-and-rescue missions, power line inspection and forest fire observation.

“The R-Bat joins our existing Bat family of unmanned aircraft systems used for tactical intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions,” says George Vardoulakis, vice president for medium-range tactical systems at Northrop Grumman. “Yamaha Motor’s lineage of reliable products speaks to the strength of R-Bat as a new member of our proven unmanned system portfolio.”

The R-Bat will be equipped with intelligence-gathering technologies and is based on the Yamaha Motor R-Max remotely piloted unmanned helicopter that is used for industrial and agriculture applications.

SD Unified Teachers Offered Early Retirement

The San Diego Unified School District Board of Education Tuesday evening approved an agreement with the teachers union to implement a supplemental early retirement program intended to help balance its budget.

The board unanimously approved the amendment to the memorandum of understanding with the San Diego Education Association, the union representing the district’s teachers, allowing for the retirement incentive plan for eligible teachers.

District officials said the supplemental early retirement program could save $32.9 million over the next five years. The proceeds from real estate sales are expected to cover about $80.3 million of next year’s anticipated shortfall of $115.6 million.

— City News Service

Classics 4 Kids Names Executive Director

Tricia Link

Tricia Link

The nonprofit organization  Classics 4 Kids has named Tricia Link as its new executive director. Link is a well-known San Diego-area community partnering expert, having most recently served as vice president, community relations and external affairs at Mission Federal Credit Union, where she also served as the executive director of its Community Foundation since late 2007. Prior to that, Link served in a variety of executive leadership roles at top Fortune 500 companies and a global nonprofit.

Link received the national Community Relations Professional of the year award by PR News at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. in late 2009, and most recently, her organization was named the San Diego Philanthropic Corporation of the Year by the Association of Fundraising Professionals in November 2013, based on nominations from Link’s community partners.

Link has more than 20 years of leadership experience, and holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism magna cum laude and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Wisconsin Madison, and a master’s degree from Loyola University Chicago.


Scholarship recipient Samantha McPherson, a second-year law student at California Western University (right), with Rahil Swigart, member of the Higgs Fletcher & Mack Diversity Committee.

Scholarship recipient Samantha McPherson, a second-year law student at California Western University (right), with Rahil Swigart, member of the Higgs Fletcher & Mack Diversity Committee.

Higgs Fletcher & Mack Awards Diversity Scholarship

Samantha McPherson, a second-year law student has received the annual California Western School of Law Diversity Scholarship from the  Higgs Fletcher & Mack law firm in San Diego. The $3,500 scholarship is awarded to a student who demonstrates ethical and/or civic leadership, as well as a commitment to providing services to underrepresented groups in the community.

McPherson is president of the California Western Black Law Student Association and serves on the Development and Advisory Board for Reach One Teach One (ROTO), a nonprofit that promotes unity, reduces violence and improves the quality of life for youth in southeast San Diego.

“The scholarship we provide helps alleviate some of the financial burden our recipients face,” said Susan Hack, chair of Higgs’ Diversity Committee. “The scholarship is made possible by contributions from the firm itself and several attorneys here at Higgs.”

The scholarship is awarded to a student who demonstrates ethical and/or civic leadership, as well as a commitment to providing services to underrepresented groups in the community.

“We are thrilled to support a Cal Western student for the second year in a row,” said Rahil Swigart, member of the Higgs Fletcher & Mack Diversity Committee and California Western School of Law alum. “Samantha demonstrated incredible work ethic and perseverance. She represents the next generation of diverse attorneys in San Diego and we are all excited to see her thrive.”

Higgs Fletcher & Mack has provided scholarships to students at the University of San Diego School of Law since 2010 and students from California Western School of Law since 2013. The firm plans to continue the annual scholarship for both institutions in the years to come.

The following Higgs Fletcher & Mack attorneys contributed to the California Western scholarship this year: Steven J. Cologne, Brian M. Cook, Thomas W. Ferrell, Loren G. Freestone, Susan M. Hack, James G. Harrigan, Rachel R. James, Michael Jones, William M. Low, Kathryn A. Martin, Susan A. Mercure, John L. Morrell, Stephen T. Pelletier, Rahil K. Swigart, Timothy D. Waters.

San Diego Ranks High in Dog Bites to Letter Carriers

The U.S. Postal Service ranked San Diego among the 10 cities in the U.S. with the most dog attacks on letter carriers. San Diego was ranked fourth, with 53 dog attacks in 2013. The ranking was announced to kick off National Dog Bite Prevention Week on Thursday.

The Postal Service said a total of 5,581 postal employees were attacked by dogs in 2013. The top 10 cities: Houston, Texas; Los Angeles; Cleveland, Ohio; San Diego; Chicago; Baltimore, Md.; Dallas, Texas; Denver; Columbus, Ohio; and Kansis City, Mo.

Susan Komen Awards $375,000 for Diagnostic Services

Susan G. Komen San Diego has awarded $375,000 to the Community Clinics Health Network (CCHN), a subsidiary of the Council of Community Clinics,  for its Breast Cancer Diagnostic Services Fund. The grant allows CCHN to provide diagnostic services, including mammography, surgical consultations, breast biopsies, ultrasounds and ancillary services to qualified underinsured women under the age of 40 living in San Diego. Gary Rotto, director of health policy for the Council of Community Clinics, estimates that about 325-350 women will receive from 1,040 to 1,120 diagnostic services between April 1, 2014 and March 31, 2015.

Solatube Appoints Digital Marketing Supervisor

VISTA — Solatube International Inc. has promoted Mimi Kotter to digital marketing supervisor. In her new role, Kotter is part of a team that manages the residential channel marketing, advertising and digital content production and implementation.

Previously, Kotter lived in South America and worked for Chile Inside as the client executive and regional sales executive. For two years, Kotter marketed the business internationally through print and digital advertising. She managed the sales of advertising space for Santiago City Guides and City Maps.

She received her bachelor’s degree in global and international studies from the UC Santa Barbara. She is a resident of Cardiff-By-The-Sea and is active in the San Diego Green Building Council.

Vibra Bank Hires Executive VP

Gail Jensen-Bigknife

Gail Jensen-Bigknife

CHULA VISTA — Vibra Bank announced the hiring of veteran banker Gail Jensen-Bigknife as executive vice president and chief credit officer.  Jensen-Bigknife was chief credit officer for San Diego-based Security Business Bank from its founding in 2002 until it sold in July 2012.  More recently, she served as chief credit officer for the Bank of Santa Barbara. Bigknife replaces Gary Housman, who left Vibra Bank to set up a new commercial loan division for another local bank.



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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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