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— New Yorker Jay Emmett, the Padres boardmember who pleaded guilty to federal charges stemming from his alleged role as bagman in the Westchester Theatre Mafia scandal, is listed as giving $250 to the San Diego mayoral campaign of county supervisor Ron Roberts. Other Padres-related donors to the Roberts campaign include Wayne Fisher of Sugar Land, Texas, listed as giving a total of $500. In October 1999, according to documents filed with the federal Securities and Exchange Commission, Fisher and Padres owner John Moores, along with Moores-controlled Neon Systems, settled a lawsuit involving BMC Software, another Texas company that once belonged to Moores. "The settlement comprised a $30 million payment by [BMC] to certain defendants and an $8.6 million payment to Neon Systems Inc. under a software distribution agreement entered into in connection with the settlement," says the February 2000 filing. Neon Systems is the outfit at the center of that ongoing federal grand jury probe into Moores-related stock dealings by San Diego city councilmember Valerie Stallings. In the Roberts campaign disclosure, Fisher's employer is listed as "owner" of "JMI Software." JMI are Moores's initials. An October 1997 SEC filing shows that Fisher also once owned stock in Peregrine Systems, yet another software firm controlled by Moores. Other Moores-related donors to Roberts include his son-in-law Robert McCleod, listed as a Padres coach, who gave $250. Samuel Kennedy, listed in "Sales" for the Padres, gave $250, as did Mary Michell, whose occupation was given as "govt relations."

Borrowed cash

Lame-duck San Diego mayor Susan Golding, who has of late been looking for income-producing gigs such as her board seat at Titan Corp. spin-off Surebeam, has upped her credit line at the North Island Federal Credit Union from $35,000 to $50,000. The debt is secured, according to county records, by a mortgage on the mayor's house in south University City ... Neal Blue, the La Jolla billionaire who along with brother Linden own defense contracting giant General Atomics, has for the time being backed off controversial plans to develop 860 acres of a valley-floor meadow near Telluride, Colorado, reports the Denver Post. Blue's San Miguel Valley Corp., which bought the land back in 1983, had proposed condos, hotels, and a golf course, provoking locals into forming a human chain of protest against the would-be development. Late last month a Blue spokesman announced withdrawal of the proposal but said the company had no plans to sell the land, as sought by the protesters. The value of the property is said to range between $17 million and $100 million, depending on its ultimate fate.


KPBS, the San Diego State University controlled public-broadcasting outlet, is boasting a new Internet auction system. "KPBS has designed a themed auction campaign that will run throughout the year, starting in September with luxurious vacation getaways; followed by wine and food, in honor of the popular KPBS Wine & Food Festival, in October; holiday gift ideas in November and December; and art in the spring," says a news release from Bidland Systems, which also handles an autograph-auction site for the Padres. As of Monday, the KPBS site was offering trips to places like Cancun and Las Vegas, with opening bids starting at $100 ... A UCSD prof specializing in chimpanzee genes says it's time to begin sequencing chimp DNA. Ajit Varki told New Scientist that since chimps share 99 percent of human DNA, most of the work is already done.

Busted bombing

A plan by Coronado-based Navy SEALs to conduct "urban combat training" in Baltimore's Memorial Stadium last month was cancelled at the last minute after locals raised a ruckus. The SEALs planned to use the stadium, which is due to be torn down in December, as a practice ground to test small explosives, knock down doors and walls, and conduct other warlike simulations. "I understand the reason they canceled it was because it compromised the operation," Robert W. Curran, a city councilman for the area, told the Baltimore Sun. "It's unfortunate, because I do believe that it would not have been much of a problem in the community."

Contributor: Matt Potter

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