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Contra Costa County library officials were all set to hire political consultant Fred Register to run their campaign for voter approval of a new library tax, but that was before the defeat of San Diego's Proposition L, which Register handled. Now, officials in the cities of Concord and San Ramon are considering pulling out of the county-run system and forming a partnership with John F. Kennedy University to set up a library on the school's new campus planned for Concord. Still, county supervisor Mark DeSaulnier is trying to convince the local taxpayers' association not to oppose a ballot try, which, like San Diego's, would be its second, says the San Francisco Chronicle ... A trio of high-powered Democratic political consultants is heading to San Diego to set up shop. Marty Stone, Dawn Laguens, and Martin Hamburger told Roll Call last week they had formed the firm Laguens/Hamburger/Stone, with Stone, who was the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's Western political director in 1998, running the West Coast branch here. Laguens was reportedly the brains behind the No on 226 campaign, the labor-financed effort that beat back Pete Wilson's anti-union dues measure ... La Jollan Herb Meistrich, once partnered with Sam Marasco and Ron Hahn in an effort to bring a pro basketball team to San Diego, has just bought the Clevelander Hotel, a landmark in Miami, Florida's South Beach. Meistrich told the Miami Daily Business Review that his company, Meistrich Capital Resources, paid a total of $16.5 million and plans to spend another $2 million on renovations. "I believe in buying enduring assets, and they are driven by location," Meistrich told the paper.

First the Cup, Now This

The pilot for a TV series set in Rhode Island will be shot in San Diego against the wishes of its creator and producer. Michael Steinberg, whose credits include There's Something About Mary, told the Providence-Journal Bulletin last week that The Caseys, a show about a paraplegic father played by Clancy Brown, was set to be filmed in Providence, until Twentieth Century Fox moved the show to San Diego. "It was not my decision. I wrote it for Rhode Island and wanted to shoot in Rhode Island. It was a studio money decision." According to the paper, while in San Diego Steinberg will "avoid recognizable locations and shoot in outlying areas." ... Marlon Jackson, brother of Michael and Janet and member of the old Jackson Five, who now lives in a downtown San Diego high-rise, is making plans for a new family cable TV network. Along with Evander Holyfield, Jackson is on the board of the Atlanta-based Major Broadcasting Network, a Baptist-oriented rival to PAX-TV. Jackson's daughter, Valencia, is set to host Rhythm and Praise, a Christian-oriented variety show for teenagers ... San Diego-born Kurt Howard has just become the first openly gay minister in Provo, Utah, according to Salt Lake City's Deseret News, taking over as pastor of the Provo Community United Church of Christ.

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