It’s not Comic-Con, but the Federal Election Commission’s “Conference on Federal Campaign Finance Laws for House and Senate Campaigns, Political Party Committees, and Corporate/Labor/Trade Political Action Committees” could draw a crowd and a bit of media attention to San Diego in the wake of the Kinde Durkee embezzlement scandal. A longtime campaign treasurer for Democratic and labor candidates, Durkee stands accused of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from the likes of Congressmember Susan Davis and Senator Dianne Feinstein. The missing money will reportedly be impossible to reraise from the original donors because federal law bars individual contributors from giving more than $2500 to a candidate per election, even if the cash is subsequently stolen.
The Federal Election Commission’s event is being held on October 25 and 26 at downtown’s Omni hotel, next to Petco Park, and will cover such topics as “permissible uses of contributions”; “lobbyist bundling”; “online fundraising”; “guidelines for corporate/labor/trade involvement”; and “candidate appearances and fundraising events,” all topped off by “a fun, interactive, wrap-up session reviewing material presented during the conference.” The registration fee is $525, and hotel reservations made by September 23 guarantee a $229 room rate…Chargers owner Alex Spanos and family have long been at the center of controversy over plans to develop the outskirts of their hometown of Stockton into condos and shopping malls. But now their enterprise, A.G. Spanos Companies, is touting a new direction. According to a recent account in the Wall Street Journal, the firm is developing the Preserve, an “1800-acre farm-centered community” on the north side of Stockton that provides its suburban residents with stretches of open fields for “community gardens.” As trendy as the idea is, there still remain issues about the agricultural acreage looking “unkempt.” Spanos senior vice president David Nelson told the paper, “There’s a visual component to an edible landscape that hasn’t been embraced fully by the public.”