Word from city hall has it that Democratic billionaire Irwin Jacobs’s deal to bulldoze a new road through Balboa Park to a big automated parking garage he favors is exceeding cost estimates, requiring taxpayers to make up a multimillion-dollar gap. The controversial project has cast a new light on the finances of the Democratic mogul, whose family contributions are being counted on by some worried city-council members to cut the burgeoning public cost. But the costly divorces of two of Jacobs’s sons, Paul and Jeff, have raised doubts that they are good for the money. The pair, along with siblings Hal and Gary, represent a big chunk of the money behind the Sacramento Kings pro-basketball team, which convinced city fathers there to bankroll the organization’s new high-tech arena. About the time that deal began percolating, Jeff cut the knot with spouse Deni in January 2014, court documents show. “The parents will cooperate in sharing time together with the children on Halloween, the children’s birthdays, and gift giving at Christmas and Hanukkah,” said a court-approved parenting plan. “The above child sharing arrangement provides a time share of 57 percent to Mother and 43 percent to Father…. In odd numbered years Mother shall have the children the first nights of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, and Father shall have the children the first night of Passover. In even numbered years this schedule shall reverse.”
Jeff Jacobs’s brother Paul, chairman of Qualcomm, cofounded by his father, split with his wife Stacy this past May. Financial details were kept off the record but are believed to have significantly tapped the brothers’ cash resources, eliminating them as candidates for bailing out their dad’s Balboa Park project. Now comes news that Jeff, 50, who with his then-wife bankrolled the Deni & Jeff Jacobs Challenged Athletes Foundation Center, has popped the question to 29-year-old La Jolla fashionista and organic-juice entrepreneur Annie Lawless.
“We arrived at Post Ranch Inn and our room wasn’t quite ready yet, so we had drinks and snacks by the fire,” she writes in an October 31 post on her blog, blawnde.com, about the big event on a recent trip to Big Sur. “Once we checked in, boyfriend went to go workout on the bike and I hopped in the shower to get ready for my birthday dinner at Sierra Mar, Post Ranch’s restaurant. When he came back, he started a fire in our wood burning fireplace and a bottle of rosé arrived that he had ordered so we could watch the sunset together by the fire. What happened next made this birthday the most memorable, special, and best day of my life. Without getting into too much detail, boyfriend asked me to marry him. And I said yes…DUH!”
Adds Lawless: “The rest of the night (and trip) was a happy blur in our love bubble. We hiked our favorite path in the woods twice, we got massages in the treehouse spa, we went to our other favorite restaurant, Nepenthe, and soaked in our private Jacuzzi. We snuggled, we laughed, we cried, and decided to enjoy the whole experience to ourselves before telling anyone. We were engaged on Sunday and not a single person knew until we were back on Wednesday. On our way back to SD, we stopped for one last dinner in Santa Barbara at our favorite spot, Bouchon.”