Daily Business Report-Nov. 3, 2014
This custom 1990 Jeep Wrangler YJ, dubbed the WD-40 Specialist Xtreme Machine, will debut at the SEMA Show and be given away in June 2015 to one lucky sweepstakes winner.
WD-40 Company Partners With PowerNation
To Build Custom, Off-Road Jeep
LAS VEGAS– San Diego-based WD-40 Company and PowerNation are teaming up to build a custom, off-road Jeep that will debut at the SEMA Show in November and be given away to one sweepstakes winner in June 2015.
The custom 1990 Jeep Wrangler YJ, dubbed the WD-40 Specialist Xtreme Machine, has an aluminum body and tube chassis and is equipped with an LS engine, 42-inch tires and coilovers all the way around.
PowerNation, a two-hour block of four automotive shows that air on NBC Sports Network, SpikeTV, the CBS Sports Network, PowerNationTV.com and the PowerNationTV app, includes “Xtreme Off-Road,” “Engine Power,” “Truck Tech” and “Detroit Muscle.” The WD-40 Specialist Xtreme Machine vehicle build will be featured on two episodes of “Xtreme Off-Road” in January 2015, with a sweepstakes to give away the vehicle running Jan. 2 – May 31, 2015.
“TV viewers will get to see the hard work and attention to detail that went into building the WD-40 Specialist Xtreme Machine before putting their hat into the ring to win it via the sweepstakes,” said Tim Lesmeister, vice president of marketing for WD-40 Company.
Ian Johnson, host of PowerNation’s “Xtreme Off-Road,” will be signing autographs at the SEMA Show inside WD-40 Company’s booth from 1:30-3 p.m. on Tuesday, and from 10-11:30 a.m. on Wednesday.
MiraCosta College Revamps Veterans
Information Center for Nov. 10 Opening
OCEANSIDE — Aiming to better serve nearly 1,500 service members and veterans, MiraCosta College has decided to revamp its Veterans Information Center at the Oceanside campus, and is slated to open Nov. 10.
The new center is substantially larger, and includes new furnishings, along with a computer lab and a lounging area where students can network and meet with veterans counselors.
Bill Kuhnert, owner of bkm OfficeWorks, a San Diego-based workspace solution dealer became involved with the project and donated all new furniture. “We’re very thankful for all that our veterans do for us and our country,” said Kuhnert. “I want veterans to be able to go to MiraCosta College and know they have a place where they can get help, be cared for and be comfortable. They deserve all of this and more.”
A need for a refurbished veterans center at MiraCosta came from a rapid increase in active duty and veterans enrolled. In 2003, they served some 900 active duty members and veterans, while today, they enroll almost 1,500, along with 800 family members.
“This wonderful facility is an excellent addition to the campus and will assist a growing number of men and women who have served their country and who absolutely deserve our admiration and support,” said MiraCosta College Interim Superintendent/President Richard Robertson.
The grand opening of new center will be on Nov. 10 at 12:30 p.m., in conjunction with the college’s celebration of the Marine Corps birthday and Veterans Day.
San Diego Poised to Add 30,000 Jobs in 2015
San Diego County’s economy is poised to add another 30,000 jobs in 2015, the fourth straight year with job gains exceeding that level, according to University of San Diego Professor Alan Gin, author of the USD Burnham-Moores Center for Real Estate’s Leading Economic Indicators.
The index reached its highest level in seven years in September, following a sharp increase from August, according to figures released Friday.
The index rose 0.6 percent higher in September to 129.1, the highest point since November 2007, according to data provided by Gin.
The monthly hike was led by improving jobs data and the outlook for the national economy. Local stock prices were also better, Gin said. The only category that was lower was the number of residential building permits issued by government agencies
According to Gin, the recent plunge in gasoline prices would give San Diegans an extra $1 million a month combined in cash that could be spent elsewhere, such as at retail establishments or restaurants.
— City News Service
Abbott Acquires Topera for $250M
Abbott, the healthcare giant based near Chicago, IL, has acquired Topera, a venture-backed startup founded on diagnostic technology developed by a San Diego cardiologist to pinpoint the electrical impulses that drive abnormal heartbeats.
Abbott said it would acquire all outstanding equity of Topera for $250 million upfront, with potential future payments tied to performance milestones.
In early January, the FDA cleared Topera’s 3D mapping system for diagnosing and treating atrial fibrillation, a common heart arrhythmia. The company has developed an innovative diagnostic catheter and mapping software that helps doctors identify the specific area of a person’s heart where abnormal electrical impulses perpetuate the irregular heart flutter.
UCSD Medical Center One of 5 Hospitals
in State Prepared to Treat Ebola Patient
If anyone in San Diego were to be diagnosed with Ebola, they’d go to the UC San Diego Medical Center. Last week, the California public health department identified five hospitals in the state that were prepared to treat an Ebola patient, and this site in Hillcrest was the only one listed in San Diego.
Over the past month, the hospital has been sealing off an infectious disease control unit from the rest of the building. It would keep Ebola from escaping with negative air pressure, advanced waste disposal, bedside lab space and nurses observing everything from the outside.
After treating a patient, nurses would exit into a separate room where they’d receive instructions from an observer on the proper way to remove protective space suits.
Dr. Jay Doucet, medical director for emergency preparedness, said volunteer nurses have received new in-person training on safely caring for one or two Ebola patients.
“We’ve got a little over 50 people trained,” Doucet said. “We’d like to have all of our volunteers, close to 100, trained. But we could take (an Ebola patient) now if we had to.”
Doucet said emergency room nurses have received additional training on screening for Ebola and transferring patients to this isolation unit. He believes the hospital is prepared to handle an Ebola patient, wherever they might show up.
So far, there have been no confirmed Ebola cases in California.
Ex-Zoo PR Chief is City’s New Communications Honcho
A longtime communications consultant was announced Friday as the director of the city of San Diego’s new Communications Department, Mayor Kevin Faulconer said.
Amelia Brazell, who once led the public relations staff of the San Diego Zoo and what was then known as the Wild Animal Park, will head a department that will consolidate the city’s various communications functions.
“With her nearly three decades of experience in the field of communications, Amelia will help develop a city government that speaks with one voice and is focused on improving the lives San Diegans in every neighborhood,” Faulconer said. “Amelia will oversee the restructure of citywide communication functions and initiatives that increase the use of technology to enhance communications with the public and media.”
Currently, many individual city departments have their own spokespeople, and the plan is to bring most of them under one roof. CityTV will also be included in the department.
Public information officers with the police and fire departments and the mayor’s and city attorney’s offices will remain separate.
Brazell will start her new job today. — City News Service
Groups Working to Get San Diegans to Vote
One group of volunteers says it has knocked on 20,000 doors in San Diego County this campaign season. They’re not campaign staffers asking for residents’ votes. They’re just asking residents to vote. More than 400 volunteers for the San Diego Organizing Project have spent their weekends knocking on doors in neighborhoods with low voter turnout.
They’re asking infrequent voters to get to the polls Tuesday so their communities can gain the ears of local politicians.
Organizer Hannah Gravette said they’re focusing on disenfranchised communities where voters may distrust the process: City Heights, southeastern San Diego, Barrio Logan, Chula Vista, National City and Oceanside.
“People feel like their vote doesn’t matter, you know. So we’re telling people, ‘Don’t think of your vote as, like, one individual vote. Think about this entire block all going out to vote together,’” Gravette said. “It’s when we can get that whole community to vote when actually things will change.
Volunteers have gotten 8,000 infrequent voters to pledge that they will vote this time. Gravette said about 70 percent of those they reached out to before the 2012 mid-term elections made good on that promise.
Volunteers will be knocking on doors through Tuesday.
Nov. 4, 2014 Gubernatorial General Election
50 percent to 55 percent
Historical Turnout for last Gubernatorial General Elections
Nov. 2, 2010 – 64 percent
Nov. 7, 2006 – 57 percent
Registered Voters (as of October 20, 2014)
County of San Diego Total: 1,546,924
Mail Ballots (as of noon, Oct. 31)
Number issued: 868,122
Number already returned: 281,147
Early voting at the Registrar of Voters (as of Oct. 30)
1,739 voters At the polls
1,432 precincts 1236 physical poll locations Approximately 6300 poll workers
Unusual polling places in San Diego County
• Diversionary Theatre, 4545 Park Blvd., San Diego
• Mission Beach Coffee Break, 2888 Mission Blvd., San Diego
• Encinitas Boxing & Fitness – Court 3, 613 Westlake Street, Encinitas
• AMF Eagle Lanes, 945 W. San Marcos Blvd, San Marcos
• A Masters Touch Pet Wash – Self Service Room, 555 W. Country Club Lane F, Escondido
• San Diego Fencing Center, 1770 Escondido Blvd., Suite C, Escondido
• Vista Historical Museum, 2317 Old Foothill Drive, Vista
• Equestrian Center, 16911 Gunn Stage Road, Ramona