Archive for 2009
The City of San Diego’s Community Planners Committee (CPC) wants changes to the planning department’s Substantial Conformance Review process (SCR). Currently, city staff conducts a ‘process one’ review to determine if any minor modification to an approved development permit is in substantial conformance with the original permit. The CPC wants to change it to a ‘process two’ that would subject every minor change to new planning group review that can be appealed to the Planning Commission. Such changes would add months to the development process. City staff is opposed to the changes sought by the CPC.
In early September, both the City Planning Commission and the Land Use and Housing Committee agreed with city staff and voted not to alter the city’s current SCR process. The issue goes to the full city council for a hearing on January 5, 2010.
(11:01 p.m.) Oceanside City Councilman, Jerry Kern has emerged victorious against a union-backed recall and will keep his seat on the Oceanside City Council. Voters overwhelming rejected the recall by a 63% to 37% margin. Kern won going away from the first returns with the vote margin barely moving as the results were counted throughout the evening. The freshman councilman fended off a brazen union attempt to shift the balance of power on the Oceanside City Council to a more union friendly body on the eve of new contract negotiations with the city. Kern’s victory with 14,803 votes is a loss for Oceanside Mayor, Jim Wood, who as a former member of the municipal employees union, campaigned in favor of the recall. In all, more than $200 thousand dollars was spent in an ultimately futile effort by the pro-recall campaign. The cost of the special election to Oceanside taxpayers is expected to reach $500 thousand.
(8:30 p.m.) Early election returns show Oceanside voters strongly rejecting a union lead effort to recall Oceanside Councilman Jerry Kern. A counting of the 16,000 mail in ballots has the recall failing by a margin of 63% to 37%. A low voter turnout was expected for the December recall leaving the mail in ballots as a strong indicator of the election outcome. Final results are expected within the next few hours.
The recall effort against Oceanside City Councilman Jerry Kern goes to the voters tomorrow. The freshman council member is fending off an attack by the municipal employees union to unseat him in exchange for a more labor friendly candidate. The business community has rallied to Kern’s defense but the pro-recall campaign has spent North of $150 thousand to capture the seat. Such strong arm tactics should be strongly repudiated and voters should reject the recall and keep Jerry Kern in Oceanside.
Polls open at 7:00 a.m. Contact the Registrar of Voters Office at www.sdvote.com to find your polling location.
The BIA’s Project Green Light is in full operation as the association seeks to give members the opportunity to offer their support for a variety of projects at public hearings throughout the county. Project Green Light allows BIA builders to post projects in the government review process on the BIA website. In turn, industry members have a chance to support projects they like by writing letters or attending local public hearings in person.
Construction is the one industry sector that defies the ‘jobless recovery’ because new projects lead to new jobs. Every approved project is another job opportunity. Project Green Light provides our members the chance to make this a reality on projects they want to support.
Check the BIA ‘Project Green Light’ page to learn more and to get the latest information on projects up for consideration.
Oceanside voters head to the polls in just 18 days to determine the political fate of one of its councilmembers, Jerry Kern. The freshman councilman is under attack by the municipal employee unions who seek his removal from office on the eve of new contract negotiations. Why? Because they need a third vote on the council to gain a more favorable contract. This demonstrates to what extent the unions will go to gain the upper hand. The BIA opposes the recall. If it succeeds, Oceanside will be decidedly set on a path of economic self destruction.
Recalls are supposed to be a tool available to the voters to oust officials from office for malfeasance or some nefarious action. What is Kern’s crime? He’s not in the union’s pocket and advocates for sound fiscal policy and balanced budgets. Such treachery.
Never mind the fact that bloated union pensions and benefits have driven the state and cities like San Diego to near fiscal ruin. Never mind the fact that as a consequence, the state legislature passed the largest tax increase in California history. Never mind that the recall will cost Oceanside taxpayers a half million dollars. Never mind that Jerry Kern is up for re-election in 2010.
This recall is smash-mouth politics and muscle flexing by organized labor. At a time when local governments struggle to meet basic services because of diminished tax dollars caused by the recession, the union’s want more. And if they win on December 8th, they’ll get it.
On December 8, vote NO on the Recall and stop the union power grab.
Radio talk show host, Roger Hedgecock pulled few punches in his critique of growing government controls during an address at the Monthly BIA Breakfast in Del Mar today. The nationally syndicated host said that the San Diego City Council is under the control of local unions and that their actions in the midst of a recession were ‘swift, decisive, and stupid.’ He chided them for raising fees while the housing market is suffering massive losses and went on to say that the biggest threat facing every level of government is union pension plans. He said the current government pension payouts were unsustainable and that reforms were needed.
Hedgecock said that “for the first time ever, [the people] have elected a government that believes government knows best,” and that the old world we knew was going away. Referring to the nation as being at a crossroads, Hedgecock said it was “time for a hard look at where we want this county to go.”
Nearly 200 BIA members were on hand to hear Hedgecock’s annual industry address and spent several minutes afterwards in a Q and A on issues ranging from the 2010 Governors race to climate change.
Hedgecock’s national program is heard on more than 100 stations and locally on KOGO radio.
The U.S. House of Representatives has just passed an extension of the Housing tax credit and NOL fix language. It was an amendment that was added to the unemployment insurance bill. The vote was 403-12.
The bill heads to the White House and is expected to be signed tomorrow.
More information to follow.
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