Matthew Suárez 11 a.m., Dec. 9
San Diego City Council Members Chow Down, Stock Up on Local Equities
Annual statements of personal economic interests of the San Diego city council and Mayor Jerry Sanders, covering calendar year 2011, are in at city hall, and, as usual, gifts abounded.
Termed-out GOP mayor Sanders spent his second to last year chowing down with the likes of defense contractor and drone making giant Northrup Grumman Corp, which paid $56.30 for lunch on November 2.
The newly-slimmed down Sanders also partook of Falstaffian hospitality at an Old Globe Gala, thanks to $420 on July 30 from wealthy Pauma Valley widow Darlene Shiley.
Though Sanders wasn't one of them, some council members also boasted sizable equity holdings, especially the First District's Sherri Lightner, who reported she owned stock in cellphone giant Qualcomm worth between $2000 and $10,000.
Qualcomm holds the naming rights to the city's Mission Valley stadium, and was granted additional rights last year by Sanders to temporarily rename the facility "Snapdragon Stadium," despite city attorney Jan Goldsmith's admonishment that the move was illegal.
Goldsmith later opined that the action might be retroactively legalized by council action, but the body has remained silent on the matter.
Qualcomm founder Irwin Jacobs and his wife are longtime Lightner political patrons.
Even larger stock blocks held by Lightner, the councilwoman from La Jolla, during 2011 included between $10,000 and $100,000 in Johnson & Johnson; Chevron Corp.; Franklin Resources; and Merck & Company.
Additional Lightner interests in the same range were Microsoft Corp; 3M; IBM; Google; Pepsico; Visa, Inc.; oilfield provider Schlumberger Ltd; US Bancorp; Cisco Systems; and Intel Corp.
The councilwoman also reported owning between $2,000 and $10,000 in Waste Management Inc., the big trash company with business at city hall. The statement shows she disposed of those holdings during last year.
GOP Councilman Kevin Faulconer reported that Restaurant Events, the dinner party and event booking service catering to conventioneers at the city-owned downtown Convention Center, was worth between $100,000 and $1 million.
Owned by Faulconer's wife Katherine Stuart, the firm did over $100,000 in business, with the two largest sources of income being the Cohn Restaurant Group and Dick's Last Resort in the Gaslamp Quarter.
The Second District's Faulconer enjoyed a $100 opening day at the Del Mar track, thanks to the 22nd District Agricultural Assocation.
He also attended an America's Cup event here in November thanks to $250 from the San Diego Port Tenants Association.
Lobbyist California Strategies, founded by ex-Pete Wilson aide Bob White, gave Faulconer $50 to attend a luncheon regarding "global trends affecting downtown."
And controversial private schools outfit Bridgepoint Education kicked in $365 so Faulconer could go to the Holiday Bowl.
Fourth District Democrat Tony Young went to a $140 golf tournament thanks to Rick Engineering, according to his report.
He also got a $118 wine and cheese basket from Los Angeles-based Rexford Capital, and a $50 dinner from Siemens Transportation Systems.
And Suncoast Financial, the firm belonging to David Malcolm, the ex-port commissioner who copped a plea to conflict of interest charges, gave Republican councilwoman Lorie Zapf of the 5th district a $200 admission ticket to the GOP Lincoln Club's December banquet.
City tenant SeaWorld of San Diego gave Zapf a Shamu photograph worth $170 and $50 admission to a documentary premier.
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