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Archive for the ‘B-Daddy’ Category

Linkage Fees Do Nothing for Affordable Housing

Wednesday, November 6, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

The need for a Republican mayor to veto leftist nonsense was on display Monday, when the San Diego city council passed whopping increases in the “linkage fees” on new development that ranges from 377% to 744%.  The fees are supposed to help provide affordable housing when new development results in low paying jobs.  Don’t ask me how creating jobs makes people less able to afford housing.  Example, Joe didn’t have a job.  A developer creates a new business.  Joe gets a job.  Joe may still not be able to afford a swanky La Jolla condo, but he is certainly in better shape than when he didn’t have a job.

Debate Questions for Mayor’s Race

Wednesday, September 4, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

This is a bit of a re-run of a previous post, but with all the focus and hoopla on filthy-Filner and the who’s in and who’s out of the campaign, we have lost sight of the fact that America’s Finest City still has challenges.

Here is an update on what I would ask the mayoral candidates in a debate.

  • Will you wholeheartedly support the pension reforms of Proposition B, including working with the City Attorney to vigorously defend the measure in court?  Explain your next steps to implement these reforms.

McDonald’s, Subway then In-N-Out

Wednesday, August 28, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

The title of the article refers to my dining plans for breakfast, lunch and dinner in light of the “fast-food” strike set for tomorrow in San Diego and elsewhere.  I will be showing solidarity with the workers of those establishments who choose to show up and provide the generally good service we have come to expect in all American businesses.  I predict that I will have no trouble getting my meals, as the “strike” is an astroturf operation of the SEIU.  If the strike by San Diego’s roughly 8,000 fast food employees was otherwise, why would the strikers only gather at a single establishment downtown?  For the publicity and the photo op, of course.  I just feel sorry for the jurors who won’t be able to hit the Wendy’s on their break from duty.  Other than that, this will be a great big fizzle.  To my astroturf point, the AP is reporting:

Why Recalling Filner Matters

Saturday, August 3, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

Some Republicans have privately told me that they are sitting out the effort to recall Mayor Filner, saying it makes little difference to governing San Diego and that the GOP might be better off if Filner drags down Democrats.  I wholeheartedly disagree. Exhibit A is the July 30 ordinance requiring a “prevailing wage” for city contracts for public works and maintenance efforts.

Insanity in our Backyard – Filner Must Go

Wednesday, July 17, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

There is plenty of coverage of the allegations regarding Filner’s sexual harassment.  Leslie Eastman at College Insurrection has a nice summary and sdrostra.com is chock full of articles on the subject. But Filner has demonstrated plenty of other out-of-control behavior that together paints a portrait of a man teetering on the edge of sanity.

  • Most disturbing to me, because it is such an affront to civil behavior, his ex-fiancee said that  she made the “gut-wrenching decision” to break up with Filner after she said he recently started text messaging other women sexually explicit messages and set up dates in front of her.  Bronwym Ingram, the ex, said that he had lost the ability to treat anyone with civility.
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There is no doubt that Bob Filner is on his way out as Mayor.  I predicted he might not make it, but this is fast.  Today both the U-T and KPBS reported that prominent Democrats, including Donna Frye, are urging the mayor to resign over sexual harassment allegations.  There is also the little matter of an FBI investigation into a pay-to-play scandal involving Sunroad Centrum’s project in Kearney Mesa.

Fading away? Probably not, but it will be ugly.

Richard Rider provides a nice summary on Twitter:

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San Diego Hotel Tax Update

Sunday, April 21, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

In a ruling that certainly disappoints, Judge Steven Denton has dismissed the lawsuit of Mel Shapiro challenging the 2% hotel tax that supports the San Diego Tourism Management District (TMD).  The suit was dismissed on the technical grounds that Mr. Shapiro lacked standing to file the suit because he was not an affected hotel owner.
 From the U-T:

Filner and Marijuana

Monday, March 18, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

I should have known.  First, let me say that I am in favor of all forms of legalizing marijuana, so of course, I am not opposed to medical marijuana.  I followed the link on this tweet from Craig Gustafson to read about Bob Filner’s medical marijuana proposal:

The linked U-T story opens with this paragraph:

Mayor Bob Filner is proposing an ordinance to allow medical marijuana dispensaries to operate in commercial and industrial areas for a $5,000 annual permit fee and a 2 percent city tax on sales.

Will Filner Finish His Term?

Wednesday, February 20, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

Bob Filner appears a little unhinged, and frankly unprofessional in a video from local news station NBC 7.  He hijacks a news conference by City Attorney Jan Goldsmith to make accusations of unprofessional conduct.  His view of the role of the City Attorney appears entirely unbalanced.  The City Attorney can’t be fired by the mayor, because he is elected directly by the public.  Filner’s tactics are those of a bully or a Congressman, not used to the necessity of working with other members of the team.  It seems irrational for the mayor to waste political capital on a personal and public fight with another official with whom he must work in the future.  His ego is writing a check he may lack the political capital to afford.

Filner Should Speak Up

Thursday, February 14, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

San Diego Mayor Bob Filner has been keeping silent about his views on the 2 percent hotel tax.  I previously argued that I thought the tax violated Proposition 26.  City Attorney Jan Goldsmith pointed out that the city was taking a risk in the comments section on sdrostra.  City Attorney Goldsmith cited his office’s legal opinion which finished with this conclusion:

Prop 26 defines every government imposition of a duty to pay funds to government as a tax unless one of seven enumerated exceptions applies.  It is not clear whether the City’s traditional businessbased assessments can meet one of those exceptions. . . .

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A Fine Mess – The Hotel Tax

Friday, February 8, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

I find myself partially agreeing with Mayor Filner on the subject of San Diego’s hotel tax.  He has stalled on signing the contract that would allow the hoteliers to start using the proceeds to promote tourism and the hotels of San Diego.  In an earlier post, I noted that he wanted to use the revenue for “public safety,” but now he is just saying that he had said the tax is illegal.  If the tax is illegal, it can’t be used for any activity, including public safety.  Meanwhile, the UT article linked above notes that there are lawsuits proceeding against the hotel tax, claiming it violates Proposition 26, passed 2010, which requires a supermajority vote of the people to raise taxes.  Here is what the state constitution says about taxes and votes, from Article XIII C, California Constitution:

County Pension System Risks vs 401

Tuesday, January 22, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

The U-T has a great article on changes in the portfolio mix of the San Diego County employee pension fund.  In 2009, the county fired the fund manager after losses totaling $2 billion in 2008.  Assuming that the fund had about $9 billion at the time, that is a loss of 22%, compared withan an S&P loss of 37% for the same year.  Taken in context that doesn’t seem that bad.  The new fund managers have shifted the mix to include emerging market debt (Russia, Brazil and Mexico) as well as in hedge funds.  I find the 2 basis point (2%) management fee in the new contract to be too high.  Fees are a drag on performance, and frankly, the county should be shooting for something closer to 1%.   Correction: A commenter pointed out that two basis points is .02%, not 2%. I should have checked the math. The fees compare favorably with the Federal Government’s Thrift Savings Plan. I wouldn’t mind hearing from any professional financial planners on this subject.  I am not qualified to say whether the investment strategy is good or not, I just know that above average returns generally do not prevail.

Filner’s Start in Office

Thursday, January 17, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

. . . is not that great.  I was happy he is stopping medical marijuana outlet harassment by the city, but is that really a burning issue?  Beyond that Filner’s start in office has not made me optimistic.

  • He cancelled new managed competition actions, claiming that more study is needed and that service levels have suffered.  The Miramar landfill competition and street sweeping services were won by city workers, but at lower cost to the city; why is Filner complaining?  There is no evidence of correlation between over paying for a service and better levels of service. Kudos to Kevin Faulconer for seeking to push ahead anyway.
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Brown Planning Pay Raises for State Workers

Sunday, January 13, 2013
posted by B-Daddy

At least that’s my take on these comments, as quoted in the U-T article headlined “NOT ALL PROP. 30 TAX HIKE MONEY GOING TO SCHOOLS.”

Brown’s proposed $97.7 billion general fund budget assumes no state employee raises beyond those already required in union contracts. But contracts for all but two of the state’s 21 bargaining units are set to expire by July 2, and the Legislature now has a supermajority of labor-friendly Democrats.

At a news conference, Brown said he didn’t budget raises for fear that it could set an expectation for any specified amount.

Economy and My Son’s Union Job

Wednesday, December 19, 2012
posted by B-Daddy

After about a year of looking for work, my youngest son (M) got two job offers within a matter of a week.  The first was with a fast food outlet and the second with a grocery chain.  Signs that the local economy is picking up?  I hope so.  The alternate explanation is that hiring by local stores, ramping up for Christmas, left other openings in the economy.

Hotels, Politics and San Diego

Friday, December 14, 2012
posted by B-Daddy

Looking for San Diego news to blog about, I notice the extent to which news regarding rich hoteliers looms large locally.  Perhaps because tourism is so important to the local economy, we see so many stories.

1. Evans Hotels was recently granted an extension to the lease of the Bahia Resort land on Mission Bay for another 21 years under circumstances that call into question the real motives of the council. Andrew Keatts at VOSD has the story.  The $75,000 annual payment doesn’t seem like much for such a choice location, but I am no expert. I really distrust any “public-private” venture.  Rich business interests can easily use influence and donations to get good deals that wouldn’t be available in a free market where another private party owned the land.  I would like to see the city sell the land at auction and use the money to make up pension shortfalls.

Kelly Davis of CityBeat has performed a public service in detailing some areas where Bob Filner’s philosophy will have a negative impact on the city’s economy.  Of course, Davis doesn’t take that view, but a review of potential “progressive” action items doesn’t bode well for the local economy.

  • Development. Progressives complain about the city reorganization that saved some money and by moving the planning department to a division in the development department.  The building industry is supposedly in favor of the move, because of the potential to steam line the permitting process.  However, the move seems to draw the ire of progressives for lack of “transparency.”  But faster permitting would seem to promote economic growth, so what is the real complaint here?

Veteran’s Day – A View of Mount Soledad

Sunday, November 11, 2012
posted by B-Daddy
Mount Soledad Veteran’s Memorial the morning of November 3, 2012.

Happy Veteran’s Day to everyone.  I have been taking a break from blogging and taking it easy yesterday and doing research today.  As a veteran so it seems a little self serving to thank veterans for their service; so I will say thank you to the Veterans who have served in combat.

A Plescia Campaign Volunteer Stopped by my House

Saturday, October 20, 2012
posted by B-Daddy

This evening, Justin, a student at Point Loma Nazarene, stopped by my house to talk to me about George Plescia’s campaign for the state senate.  My eldest son answered the door, but immediately called for me to take the visit; since Justin was asking about putting up a yard sign.  I liked that the first thing he did was ask if I had concerns about California state government.  I responded that the budget was a mess and that out of control state employee pensions were a big factor.  Justin vouched that Plescia felt the same way; that his candidate was in favor of a Proposition B type reform for state pensions as part of the solution.  He also said that if Plescia isn’t elected the Democrats will have such a large majority they will be able to pass any spending they want.  (I didn’t think to disagree, he’s right, except for the inevitable math problem when they run out of other people’s money.)  He also pointed out that Plescia has created jobs in the private sector, much like Mitt Romney.

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Bilbray’s Call Center Needs an Upgrade

Monday, October 8, 2012
posted by B-Daddy


I got a call today from the Bilbray campaign, dialing me up from Del Mar (858-617-XXXX according to the caller id).  A young man asked me something that was hard to understand because the voice quality of the call was garbled.  I thought he asked if I was supporting Brian Bilbray, but in hindsight, I think he must have been asking if I would like to hear a message from the Congressman.  Then a recorded message from Bilbray started, again very garbled, although I could still tell it was Bilbray, having heard him in person.  I just hung up, a little frustrated.

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Without taking a position on the wisdom of sequestration, I have it on good authority that it is the official policy of the Department of Defense not to plan for the eventuality; despite widespread belief that it will.  In my opinion, this is because the word has come down from the administration to ignore what is happening so that defense contractors who might vote Democrat won’t change their minds.  Of course, its junior enlisted who might be hurt worst, but here is how the administration is protecting them; answer, not much.

Well, that’s not what Jerry Brown and legislative Democrats claim their bill would do, but how can we doubt that wouldn’t be the effect.  Here is what they are claiming, as reported in the SacBee:

The goal is to create a savings program in which workers who have no access to a pension can count on a guaranteed rate of return for contributing about 3 percent of their salary.

Sounds laudable? But who will control the money? Who will guarantee the rate of return?  According to the article, private insurers would, because:

Critical Mass and Mob Rule

Saturday, September 1, 2012
posted by B-Daddy

The news that a police officer was struck in the head by a screw driver yesterday, likely thrown by a bicyclist participating in Critical Mass, isn’t really surprising to me nor to many others. While the goals of the Critical Mass bike movement appear laudable, raising awareness of the unfriendly nature of the urban street environment to bicycles, the mob nature of the event and flaunting the rule of law inevitably lead to instances of violence.

Bilbray and Peters Race Reportedly Close

Tuesday, August 7, 2012
posted by B-Daddy

The U-T is reporting that Democratic sponsored polls are showing a dead heat in my home district, the CA-52, in the race between Brian Bilbray, incumbent Republican and Scott Peters, former City councilman and Port commissioner. One poll was at 40-40 and another at 45-45. While these are polls of likely voters, the real question will be what actual turn out will look like between Republicans and Democrats. With two huge tax hike initiatives on the state ballot, I predict that Republican turn out will be higher because tax hikes tend to bring out conservatives; anger motivates voting. Democrats will have less incentive to vote as Obama is a shoe in to take California’s electoral votes. Additionally, Carl DeMaio’s campaign will be emphasizing pension reform. Bilbray’s campaign will be attacking Peters on that issue for his votes during the time he was on the council. I believe this tilts the field against Peters. From the U-T:

Peters has acknowledged that his vote to underfund the pension system was a mistake but said he’s the only candidate in the race to do any meaningful pension reform. He has pointed to negotiating a new pension plan to save the city $23 million a year.

California tea party Conundrum

Sunday, July 22, 2012
posted by B-Daddy

As a tea partyer in deep blue California, it may seem that we have limited ability to influence elections. Gerrymandering keeps almost all House, Assembly and State Senate races non-competitive. However, ballot measures and local races still provide an opportunity to make our voices heard and to beat the entrenched labor/big-government establishment. Temple of Mut has provided a public service by previewing the November ballot issues; but I wanted to add a few thoughts on issues and races that matter in San Diego in particular.

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