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Stories by Don Bauder

Public relations — er, utilities commission chief speaks

Is Michael Picker more interested in smoothing over corruption?

At a meeting of the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) today (January 15), the new president, Michael Picker, acknowledged that the agency has had ethical problems and pledged reform. Picker conceded that there "is uncertainty ...

Mayor Faulconer's folly

Budget analyst says "the city does not have enough resources"

In his state of the city address yesterday evening (January 14), mayor Kevin Faulconer said he wants to repair long-neglected infrastructure, take action on expansion of the convention center, and build a stadium for the ...

New sewer lines or new stadium? Your choice.

Will Chargers eat up our sidewalks? Local infrastructure remains wholly inadequate.

All recognize the infrastructure is ailing. Still, a subsidized stadium for a billionaire family may well prevail.

Rake in $1 million a year! Pay no taxes!

Then go to the slammer for four years

Encinitas osteopath Dr. James Francis Murphy today (January 13) was sentenced to four years in prison and his wife, Denine Christine Murphy got a year under house arrest for paying almost no federal income taxes ...

Please, no Encore

Bad-debt buyer agrees to reform, wants judgments thrown out

Encore Capital Group, a publicly held San Diego company that buys bad debt cheaply and then pressures debtors to cough up, agreed Friday, January 9, to reform. The company reached agreement with the State of ...

Wanted: New CPUC president's erased emails

Is Michael Picker as cozy as Peevey was with Edison?

This morning (January 12), Maria Severson of the law firm Aguirre & Severson will call for an immediate forensic investigation of all erased correspondence on the computers of the new California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) ...

Developer vs. developer, continued

La Jolla real estate guy reputedly writing book to expose Lennar Corp.

Nicolas Marsch, onetime La Jolla socialite and wealthy real estate developer, is apparently writing a book about his nemesis, Florida-based big builder Lennar Corp. Up until recently, Marsch had a website touting his purported book, ...

San Diego's job market sucks

But at least we have an abundance of cafés

San Diego is among the five United States cities with the lowest number of job opportunities, according to WalletHub, a statistics-compiling organization that reports on cities and states. San Diego is the best of the ...

San Diego lawyer helps defend Dzhokhar Tsarnaev

Attorney Judy Clarke reputedly against death penalty

San Diego lawyer Judy Clarke has an almost perfect batting average. She represented Ted Kaczynski, called the Unabomber; Jared Lee Loughner, who shot Rep. Gabrielle Giffords; Zacarias Moussaoui, 9/11 suspect; and Susan Smith, who murdered ...

Get in line, Chargers

St. Louis Rams owner to build Inglewood stadium

The Los Angeles Times reported today (January 5) that Stan Kroenke, owner of the St. Louis Rams, plans to build an 80,000-seat NFL stadium in Inglewood. Such a rumor has been rampant for a year, ...

Peevey in their pocket

At CPUC, former commissioner communicated regularly with Edison

Michael Peevey, president of the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) for a dozen years, who retired at the end of 2014, kept up a steady, cozy email dialogue with officials of Southern California Edison while ...

Attorneys on the loose

Four county lawyers disciplined by California Bar

According to the State Bar of California, David Taylor Kaye of Escondido has been suspended from the practice of law for two years and placed on three years of probation. According to the Bar's review ...

Evicted for being pregnant

Woman claims violation of Federal Fair Housing Act

In a suit filed in San Diego federal court December 30, Rowna Nicolas claims she was evicted from an apartment, in effect, for being pregnant. The defendants are B.C. Dage, Inc., owner of a six-unit ...

Investors shun fat, sex treatments

Despite strong overall market, some local biotechs lag

This was to be the year for fat pills. It wasn't. Sex enhancement biotechs didn't set the world on fire, either.

Former ethics commissioner doesn't provide info to state bar

No proof of attendance at abstinence self-helf group

Krishna Haney, a former commissioner of the San Diego Ethics Commission appointed by ex-Mayor Jerry Sanders, got in trouble with the California State Bar last year. In 2011, her car struck an emergency call box. ...

Appellate court weighs grisly pit bull death scene

Owner's Involuntary manslaughter conviction reversed

The Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, ruled December 26 that a woman who owned two pit bulls that killed a neighbor should not have been found guilty of involuntary manslaughter by a jury. Carla ...

New faces at CPUC. But new broom unlikely

Political PR pro Picker to replace Peevey

Governor Jerry Brown today (December 23) named two new commissioners to the scandal-ridden California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). Long-time Sacramento public relations pro Michael Picker, who was named a commissioner in January of this year, ...

San Diego not top-ranked as singles haven

High cost of dating lowers swinging ratio

Of 150 American metropolitan areas, San Diego ranks 34th as a location for swinging singles, according to WalletHub, which compiles statistics on states and metro areas. The study is broken down into two categories: the ...

Facts about staggeringly high rates interrupt Peevey lovefest

SDG&E electricity rates the highest — by far

Last Thursday (December 18), the California Public Utilities Commission held a farewell for its president, Michael Peevey, retiring at the end of December after 12 years. The publication said the lovefest was "stage-managed to ...

County unemployment rate stays steady

The San Diego County unemployment rate was 5.8 percent in November, unchanged from October. In November of 2013, the rate was 7 percent. Between October and November of this year, the county gained 13,500 jobs. ...

Banks paid solons so they can gamble with our money

Representatives Issa, Peters got paid to support moral hazard

Public Action Committees (PACs) of America's big banks shelled out lucre to Congress members to be able to gamble on derivatives trading and have taxpayers pick up their losses. At midmonth, the House and Senate ...

San Diego could thrive from pain

Wars. Promiscuous printing of money. Could San Diego cash in next year?

All those troubles in the world could help San Diego's economy. So could even more easy money.

Appeals court sides with CPUC, denies intervenor fees

Aguirre thwarted SDG&E plot to nail ratepayers, gets punished

Today (December 16), the Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, denied an appeal by law firm Aguirre & Severson to get intervenor fees from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) for the firm's work in ...

She fell off a ski lift, sues for damages

Couple claims company was trying to hustle people on the lift

On December 9, San Diegans Sally and Louis Rumpf filed suit in federal court in Colorado, blaming faulty instructions for her injury falling from a ski lift. The suit charges that the lift attendant for ...

CityBeat runs mea culpa — but buried

Aguirre, who sued publication, still unhappy

On December 5, as noted in the Reader, former City Attorney Mike Aguirre sued the publication CityBeat for libel. It had stated in a November 12 column that Aguirre claimed that Representative Scott Peters, while ...

Sexual harassment case, settled, can't be dug up again

Appeals court says settlement bars male's second case

A man who got a settlement in a sexual harassment case can't file a second case for the same reason, the Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, ruled yesterday (December 15). Linda Greenberg, head of ...

No NFL team in LA next year?

Goodell says nothing imminent

The New York Times has reported that National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell says there is little progress on moving a team to the Los Angeles market. "I'm not at the point where I would ...

Suit charges ex-cop forced man to perform sexual act

Christopher Hays, now in jail, sued by woman same day

On Wednesday, December 10, Trent Gene Veasey, Jr., charged in Superior Court that he was forced to perform oral copulation on former San Diego policeman Christopher Hays. The suit names Hays, former Police Chief William ...

SEC censures San Diego accounting firm

Boros & Farrington gets cease and desist order

The Securities and Exchange Commission this month censured San Diego's Boros & Farrington Accountancy Corp. for engaging in "highly unreasonable conduct that resulted in violations of applicable professional standards," according to the securities agency. The ...

Government nabs jock swindler

Billy Crafton took undisclosed payoffs to hype Ponzi scheme

On Wednesday, December 10, the Securities and Exchange Commission charged San Diegan Bill C. (Billy) Crafton Jr., who counseled professional athletes on their finances, with fraudulent misconduct in violating federal securities laws. Importantly, Crafton agreed ...

SeaWorld president out; stock rises

Cost-cutting layoff plan continuing

SeaWorld Entertainment today (December 11) ousted its president and chief executive officer, Jim Atchison, who will become vice chairman of the problem-plagued company. Chairman David D'Alessandro will be interim chief executive. The stock rose 2.88 ...

San Diego one of top cities for active lifestyle

High percentage of people engage in physical activity

San Diego is 18th among 100 cities in citizens having an active lifestyle, according to WalletHub, which puts together statistics on American metropolitan areas and states. San Diego is tied for third in percentage of ...

Lawsuits attack Bridgepoint's automatic dialing pitches

Civil suits, government investigations pile up

On December 3, a suit was filed in Arizona federal court charging that Bridgepoint Education is violating the Telephone Consumer Protection Act by using an automatic dialing system to send prerecorded messages to sales prospects. ...

Could that have been Padres money?

For $55.5 million, Rebecca Moores gets a unit overlooking Central Park

Rebecca Moores, ex-wife of former Padres owner John Moores, has purchased a Manhattan condo for $55.5 million, according to New York real estate publications and the She will have a full floor unit ...

None worse than Detroit

San Diego's percentage of needy ranks among nation's lowest

San Diego is among the American metropolitan areas with the lowest percentage of economically disadvantaged people, according to a study by WalletHub, a statistical tabulation organization. Among 150 American cities, ranked from best to worst, ...

Attorney Mike Aguirre sues CityBeat for libel

Publication telescoped 112-page legal opinion

Mike Aguirre, former city attorney, knows that he is a public figure in San Diego, but he nonetheless sued the publication CityBeat for libel today (December 5) in Superior Court. A public figure has a ...

Street-sweep city

Vietnam vet files suit claiming disability discrimination

Alan Welch is a disabled Vietnam veteran suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder and other afflictions such as heartbeat and heart-valve problems, breathing difficulty, high blood pressure, and diabetes. In October, Welch filed a suit against ...

Ryan Leaf released from Montana prison

Chargers draft bust has been plagued with addiction problems

Ryan Leaf, who has been called "the biggest bust in the history of professional sports," was released from a Montana prison yesterday (December 3) after getting two years for breaking into a home to nab ...

Vittles at Rick's

U-T publisher to back Perry's presidential run?

Texas governor Rick Perry, who suffered foot-in-mouth disease in his 2012 run for the Republican nomination, is assuring potential donors that this time he is doing his homework. According to a December 3 article in ...

You try being a lawyer

California bar shines spotlight on attorneys caught drinking and driving

Two San Diego County lawyers have gotten a public reproval from the California bar, both for drunken driving. According to the report by the bar, Richard James Schneiders of Carlsbad was reported October 4, 2013, ...

What about those Cayman Islands assets?

San Diego’s self-proclaimed “best” tax lawyer charged with embezzlement.

J. Douglass Jennings boasts that he knows the tax loopholes. But he and his wife owe more than $7 million in taxes and are charged with embezzlement.

Sorry, Government

Cricket Communications fined for overcharging feds

Cricket Communications, which has had a rocky history, agreed yesterday (December 1) to pay the federal government $2.17 million to resolve allegations that it overcharged law-enforcement agencies for the costs of carrying out court-ordered wiretaps ...

Gulp! Rancho Santa Fe is how thirsty?

Article says residents use five times the average of coastal area

The New York Times today (November 30) has a long story on the huge water usage of Rancho Santa Fe, San Diego County's most upscale community. According to state data, the tony town's residents used ...

Which Tamara Green we talking about?

Cosby accuser's rocky career as attorney documented

Tamara Lucier Green is making headlines for relating her story of entertainer Bill Cosby drugging her, abusing her, and satisfying himself sexually in her presence in the 1970s. She is quoted now as Tamara Green, ...

Yay, more jobs for slaves

County unemployment rate keeps dropping, incomes keep declining

The San Diego County unemployment rate in October declined to 5.8 percent from a revised 5.9 percent in September, according to the California Employment Development Department. The county added 12,500 jobs over the month, and ...

Balderdash and poppycock

Public utilities commission issues "false" press release regarding "refunds"

The California Public Utilities Commission this morning (November 20) approved a deal in which ratepayers of Southern California Edison and San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) will get socked with $3.3 billion in costs resulting ...

California electricity rates top nation’s — by far

Utilities commission assures Wall Street that profits will remain high

California residential electricity rates are the highest in the nation — by far. A major reason is that the California Public Utilities Commission, the so-called regulator, schmoozes Wall Street, promising to keep the profits of ...

The Tailgate goes down in Nashville

Former San Diego brewer opens taproom, soon to start fermenting

Tailgate Beer, which moved from San Diego to Tennessee in July, opened a taproom in West Nashville three weeks ago, according to their website. In May of 2013, Tailgate owner Wesley Keegan and his partners ...

Guaranteed to fool the IRS

Not quite — Lloyd Irvine Taylor caught stealing identities of dead children

Lloyd Irvine Taylor, a former tax attorney and certified public accountant, was sentenced yesterday (November 17) to 57 months in prison for stealing the identities of dead children, using them as aliases to get passports ...

No jail time, but a $114,000 fine

Securities agency suspends SD lawyer Robert Weaver

The Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday suspended San Diego attorney Robert C. Weaver, Jr. for his role in a scheme to sell phony shell companies. Weaver wrote "opinion of legality" letters and filled out ...

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