Daily Business Report — July 10, 2014
North Park to Close 30th Street for
World Cup Championship Viewing
The World Cup Championship Match viewing party will take over North Park on Sunday when 30th Street will be closed between Lincoln Street and University Avenue to show the soccer match on a giant LED screen.
The pre-game broadcast will start at 11 a.m. and the kickoff is at noon.
Everything is free. Fans are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs, but no alcohol will be allowed on the street. There will be local food trucks and DJs Eddie Turbo and Prince Zohar.
The North Park Parking Structure at 30th Street and North Park Way will offer $1 parking between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.
All ages are welcome.
The faceoff on Sunday will be Argentina vs. Germany.
Judge Rejects Effort to Keep City From
Spending Business Improvement District Funds
A San Diego Superior Court judge has denied attorney Cory Briggs’ motion for an injunction seeking to prohibit the city from spending over $1 million raised by 18 San Diego Business Improvement Districts. The funds are used to promote neighborhood events such as farmers markets, street fairs and festivals and projects including lighting, planters, banners and promotions. Had Briggs been successful, such events and projects would have been jeopardized throughout the city, according to City Attorney Jan Goldsmith.
In rejecting Briggs’ motion, Judge Ronald Prager concluded that Briggs’ entity plaintiff that sued the city “has not shown that it has a reasonable likelihood of prevailing on the merits.”
A Business Improvement District, or “BID,” is a public/private partnership that performs a variety of services to improve the neighborhood and promote individual business districts. They also carry out economic development services by working to attract, retain and expand businesses.
State law authorizes a city to establish BIDs and levy annual assessments on businesses within the boundaries, but only after proper notice and opportunity to oppose is given to the public. In concluding that Briggs is unlikely to prevail in his lawsuit, Judge Prager found that BID assessments are “not taxes for the general benefit of the city; rather they are assessments imposed on businesses to fund activities which confer a special benefit upon the businesses assessed.”
“BIDS are specifically authorized by state law and are very popular in our neighborhoods,” said Goldsmith. “Residents of Little Italy are proud of their festivals and special neighborhood touches, for example. This decision allows BIDS to continue enhancing our neighborhoods.”
Scripps Research Ends Merger Talks with USC
Scripps Research Institute confirmed Wednesday it has ended talks aimed at merging with the University of Southern California. “The current nonbinding letter of intent on discussions about a broad partnership with (USC) has been terminated by mutual consent of both parties,” according to a statement posted on the Scripps website.
The 100-word statement was attributed to Dick Gephardt, chair of the institute’s board of trustees, and Michael Marletta, president and CEO.
“Representatives from The Scripps Research Institute’s Board of Trustees, administration and faculty are in the process of coming together to analyze and discuss the strategic future of Scripps, reviewing a broad range of thoughtful alternatives to choose the best path forward for the institution,” the statement said.
“We appreciate USC’s spirit of collaboration and look forward to continuing joint research projects among our scientists.”
U-T San Diego reported that Marletta had been criticized by the faculty for not broadly including researchers in discussions with USC.
The La Jolla-based nonprofit, which specializes in biomedical research, also has a satellite operation in Jupiter, Fla. where opposition to a merger also surfaced.
— City News Service
O’Reilly Auto Parts to Pay
$1.5 Million For Price Scanner Violations
O’Reilly Auto Parts agreed to pay more than $1.5 million in penalties and restitution to settle allegations of scanner price violations, the San Diego City Attorney’s Office announced Wednesday.
The settlement follows an investigation by county Weights and Measures into alleged pricing violations, in which O’Reilly cooperated fully, authorities said. As part of their enforcement efforts, Weights and Measures inspectors from various counties reported hundreds of violations.
The alleged violations included incorrect sale prices, the failure to apply discounts at checkout stands and a failure to comply with the terms of an injunction issued against CSK/Kragen pursuant to a 2008 judgment. CSK/Kragen became O’Reilly Auto Enterprises Inc., a Delaware corporation that operates more than 480 O’Reilly Auto Parts stores in California.
Under the terms of the settlement, O’Reilly is required to have an overcharge program that guarantees $5 off, or getting the product for free if cost less than $5, when overcharges occur. O’Reilly agreed to post a sign in each California store notifying consumers of the program.
O’Reilly also agreed to appoint a corporate representative to oversee a Compliance Program and to designate a Price Auditor for each retail location. The settlement — filed July 1 with District Attorney Offices in San Bernardino, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties and the San Diego City Attorney’s Office — does not include any admission of wrongdoing.
— City News Service
Water Conservation Efforts Fall Short
As California Considers Mandatory Restrictions
In the seven months since Gov. Jerry Brown called for a voluntary 20 percent reduction in water use, California as a whole has cut back 5 percent, but San Diego County residents and businesses increased water consumption by 10 percent compared to the same months last year.
“Now that isn’t necessarily because folks are now wasting more water. It’s because it’s been hot and dry,” said Dana Friehauf, acting water resources manager for the San Diego County Water Authority.
When temperatures rise, so does water use, Friehauf said. The past six months in San Diego were the warmest ever recorded for that time period. May alone was more than 5 degrees above average at Lindbergh Field, accordin to the National Weather Service.
The extreme drought is expected to intensify as the region enters its hottest and driest months of the year, carrying a three-year rainfall deficit of nearly a foot.
Paul McCartney to Perform at Petco Park
Paul McCartney has added another date to summer’s hottest ticket: the Out There world tour has confirmed a Sept. 28 stop at Petco Park — marking McCartney’s first concert in the city since the Wings Over America tour passed through in 1976.
The Out There tour features music from the most beloved catalog in popular music, as McCartney performs songs spanning his entire career — as a solo artist, member of Wings and of course as a Beatle. The set list will also include material from his most recent studio album “NEW,” a global hit upon its release last year.
This will be the first full-venue concert at Petco Park since Madonna played the ballpark on Nov. 4, 2008. With the stage located in center field, and tickets ranging in price from $23 to $253.50, capacity for the Paul McCartney show will be just over 42,000.
Tickets will be on sale to the general public starting July 18 at 10 a.m. Tickets will be available at www.padres.com/PaulMcCartney and all Ticketmaster locations.
La Fuente Student Center Director Appointed
OCEANSIDE — Springs Charter Schools has named Amy Heald as its new director for its La Fuente Student Center. Opening in August, the center will offer Springs’ new Dual Immersion Spanish English 50/50 Program. It is designed for native English speakers and native Spanish speakers and their parents who want to learn a second language. The program will serve grades Transitional Kindergarten (TK) through 5th grade.
Heald has a bachelor’s degree from Williams College, and a master’s degree and BCLAD teaching credential from Claremont Graduate School. She has had more than 20 years of teaching experience, from kindergarten to adult. Her career emphasis has been on second language acquisition, particularly English and Spanish. Most recently, she served as acting executive director of Mountain Peak Charter School in Vista.
City, County Offer Residents Financial Help to Go Green
City and county officials on Wednesday urged homeowners to plug into PACE, a new loan program aimed at reducing energy and water use.
“This program makes it easier for many consumers to save money and go green, opening the door to more rooftop solar panels, more energy-efficient windows and other improvements,” said Dianne Jacob, chairwoman of the county Board of Supervisors.
Loans are available to many homeowners with the help of HERO, a program offered by San Diego-based Renovate America. PACE, or Property Assessed Clean Energy, loans approved through HERO and other lending programs are repaid through property tax assessments, the county said.
PACE loans are available starting this week in the cities of San Diego, El Cajon and Escondido, along with the region’s unincorporated areas.
Carlsbad, Lemon Grove, Oceanside, San Marcos, Solana Beach and Vista launched similar efforts this year and have already funded nearly $5 million in energy-saving projects, the county said.
To apply for HERO, go to heroprogram.com or call (855) 437-6411.
— City News Service
Auditor Faults City’s Emergency Management System
San Diego’s independent auditor faulted the city’s emergency management system for poor coordination and readiness in a report released Wednesday that said federal funding could be lost. Eduardo Luna, San Diego’s first city auditor since a 2008 vote established the office, said in a 34-page report that more than two dozen city departments needed to improve their coordination with the city’s Office of Homeland Security.
Port of S.D. Makes America’s Cup Shortlist
San Diego has been shortlisted as one of two final potential host cities for the 35th America’s Cup, according to the organizers of the renowned sailing event. The Port of San Diego is the lead agency carrying forward the region’s bid for hosting the event. “Both Bermuda and San Diego have made very compelling cases to be the host for the next America’s Cup,” said Russell Coutts, director of the America’s Cup Event Authority. “We will be in good hands with either venue.”
California comfort with Las Vegas pizzazz
If you’re looking for an interesting combination of California sunshine and the pizzazz of Las Vegas, jump in your jitney and motor on out to Harrah’s Resort Southern California.
The folks at Harrah’s call it “Palm Vegas.” There’s a little bit of relaxation, sunshine, the California-comfortable vibe of Palm Springs (and San Diego!) and the high energy of being in Las Vegas, without being in Las Vegas.
How do you beat that? Harrah’s is close in, a hop, skip and a jump from Escondido and a stone’s throw from Valley Center.