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Stories by Matt Potter

Kelvin Barrios hit with $5,000 ethics penalty

After a blitz of allegations about loose ethics and possible crimes, Kelvin Barrios was forced in November of 2020 to abandon his campaign to fill the Ninth District city council seat of Georgette Gomez, his ...

December 20, 2021
Eccentric North Park bungalows, Mexican architecture everywhere in San Diego

Radical, Whole-Wheat Architecture He describes Dryden, who died in 1946, as “flamboyant, quixotic,” and “a personality who ranged from high to low.” He says, “He also describes this scene: “His family said he made and ...

December 18, 2021
$100K for UCSD corruption cop

UCSD’s new ethics gumshoe Faced with a growing number of critical audits, UCSD’s Office of Ethics & Compliance is seeking a senior investigator to help root out fraud, corruption, and all-around bad ethics at the ...

December 15, 2021
SDSU frats scrub their image, UCSD profs get home loan perks

Escape from the Chicks and Beer Image “Monday night the actual rush starts, but we can’t give out bids on Monday. That gives everyone a chance to get around and see where they want to ...

December 13, 2021
Elisabeth Kimmel's pre-jail pleas for mercy

Before her December 9 sentencing to six weeks in federal prison and a year of home confinement, along with a $250,000 fine and 500 hours of community service, lawyers for ex-KFMB TV and radio owner ...

December 10, 2021
SDG&E workers fear wildfires and violent public

SDG&E’s sitting ducks The first annual Safety Culture Assessment of San Diego Gas & Electric by the state’s Office of Energy Infrastructure Safety is out, giving the local utility generally high marks, with a significant ...

December 8, 2021
San Diego – city of shame, University Avenue, roommates from hell, writers write about moms

Roommates from Hell I walked outside to the storage door. I pushed on the door and opened it. I saw the rope around John’s neck and John’s face looking at me. I screamed and ran ...

December 5, 2021
UCSD misses out on Covid and Fema gravy trains

Audit hotspot UCSD is again suffering an auditor’s unflattering scrutiny. This time, it’s State Auditor Elaine Howle, who has released a report accusing the school of failing to apply for millions of dollars of minority ...

December 1, 2021
UCSD faculty caught playing hooky

UCSD faculty’s hooky play A September 21 report by UCSD’s Audit & Management Advisory Services has some words of tough love for errant faculty members discovered to be taking too many paid vacations and not ...

November 24, 2021
Juan Vargas headed to Kiev prayer breakfast

Juan Vargas, holy man Yet another member of San Diego’s delegation to the House of Representatives has reemerged on the free international travel circuit in the wake of waning covid-19 worries. A freshly filed disclosure ...

November 17, 2021
5000 new Apple employees to be in San Diego by 2026

It's not quite Cupertino South, but San Diego and its environs have been invaded by a raft of Apple Inc. employees in aid of the iPhone giant's ongoing efforts to wean itself from powerful homegrown ...

November 17, 2021
City’s top planner and a waterfront museum quietly go bye-bye

How secret and conflicted is San Diego government? Two fresh revelations about life at the top show just how much of a black box city hall has become since voters threw out the longtime city ...

November 12, 2021
San Diego auditor goes after $3 swimming fee

Million-dollar miss An October 20 report from San Diego city auditor Andy Hanau argues some unspecified user fees at municipal parks and other public recreational facilities are too low, and should be hiked. “Parks & ...

November 10, 2021
Darrell’s and Sara’s excellent Qatar adventures

Democrat Sara Jacobs isn't the only rich House member from San Diego County taking free trips courtesy of foreign business groups. According to an October 27 disclosure filing with the Clerk of the House, Republican ...

November 8, 2021
Dick Nixon in San Diego, Joseph McCarthy in La Jolla

When Dick Nixon Came to Town San Diego entrepreneur Arnholt Smith, one of Nixon’s earliest supporters, remembered a melancholy evening in the early ’60s when Nixon was holding a meeting and asked him to get ...

November 8, 2021
San Diego Door, Street Journal, San Diego Magazine

Notes from Underground Most of the paper's staff lived in the Door commune in a Victorian House on Albatross Street that rented for $295 a month. In late 1973 they were asked to move by ...

November 6, 2021
Darrell Issa's $50 million

Sidewalk vids It may seem an audacious request for a mayor and council having difficulty finding their way through the trials and travails of running a big city, but according to a document posted online ...

November 3, 2021
Starring roles in the Copley Union-Tribune: James, Helen, Michael, David

I’m Morgan, He’s Cronkite Scholars, particularly Vjaceslav Vsevolodovic Ivanov, director of the Section on Structural Typology of the Institute of Slavic and Balkan Walter Leland Cronkite Studies at the Soviet Academy of Sciences in St. ...

October 31, 2021
Toll Brothers, Brookfield, Monarch vie for Sports Arena property

Border body snooping Mexican border crossers afoot at inspection gates in San Ysidro, Tecate, and Nogales, Arizona, will soon be the first guinea pigs in a test of the federal government’s latest high-tech snooping technology. ...

October 27, 2021
Let them eat French Charolaise steak

An aide to San Diego House Democratic Sara Jacobs took off on a free trip to Cyprus courtesy of the United Nations Foundation, as the controversial non-profit faced new questions regarding corporate sponsorship of its ...

October 25, 2021
Gloria’s claims of tackling homelessness seen as cringey

Talking Todd’s debacle Democratic San Diego mayor Todd Gloria’s first comic video turn on behalf of the Downtown San Diego Partnership, an economic development association that sometimes dabbles in partisan politics, went viral for all ...

October 20, 2021
Son of L.A. councilman indicted in USC scandal backed Gloria's mayoral campaign

An ex-state Assembly Democrat who last year kicked in $1150 to help onetime colleague Todd Gloria get elected mayor is the latest player in the University of Southern California's long-running admission bribery scandals. Plagued by ...

October 18, 2021
The Copley family and the Nixons, Dr. Seuss, San Diego Magazine

Dear Dick: The San Diego Union, Evening Tribune, and Nixon: A Romance in Letters Nixon to Copley: “The ride down and back in your spic-and-span new plane, the superb dinner which you hosted jointly with ...

October 16, 2021
Mike Pompeo stops at University Club

Faulconer’s leavings Mike Pompeo, who served as Secretary of State under President Donald Trump, is bringing his proto-presidential fundraising campaign to San Diego. “We invite you to an incredibly unique opportunity to join Secretary Mike ...

October 13, 2021
Barbara Bry readies run for San Diego County Assessor

Barbara Bry, who lost out to fellow Democrat Todd Gloria in her bid to become San Diego mayor last year, has filed a campaign statement with the county Registrar of Voters to run for County ...

October 9, 2021
Union-Tribune begs advertisers to use its Spanish edition

Soon-Shiong’s hat-passing scheme San Diego Union-Tribune en Español, a free weekly broadsheet, has long struggled to gain traction after its predecessors, Hoy, and for years before that Enlace, were shot down by corporate economizers. The ...

October 6, 2021
Love fest for Oklahoma's Stephanie Bice and Sara Jacobs in San Diego

A controversial House Republican from Oklahoma has toured San Diego with Democratic colleague Sara Jacobs, courtesy of a Washington-based think tank criticized by a Harvard University ethics fellow for its ties to Big Oil. According ...

October 4, 2021
Scott Peters squeezes money from Pfizer, Eli Lilly, Merck, Bristol Myers Squibb

Hueso’s big officeholder binge With his tenure as a California state senator winding down, Democrat Ben Hueso has gone on a luxury dining spree with the dwindling cash in his Officeholder Account 2018. State filings ...

September 29, 2021
Audit hits Donovan state prison for shoddy tuberculosis care, loose injectable handling

The 3,786 or so inmates at California’s Donovan Correctional Facility on Otay Mesa, a half mile from the Mexico–United States border, are getting generally so-so medical care, says a new audit by the state’s Office ...

September 27, 2021
Why did Faulconer get so much cash from farmers and oilmen?

Kevin’s big cash crash After a third-place finish as Gavin Newsom’s would-be replacement in last week’s recall contest, uncertain money-raising prospects loom ahead for ex-San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer. Up to now, the Point Loma ...

September 22, 2021
Waste and Covid-19 missteps plague CoreCivic's border lockup

Auditors from the Department of Homeland Security's Office of Inspector General say their snap visit to the Otay Mesa Detention Center - run by private prison contractor CoreCivic for the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency ...

September 20, 2021
San Diego City Clerk attacked in re-tweet

Incompetence, not hackers, to blame? It’s been a tough year for San Diego city clerk Elizabeth Maland on the computer front. As revealed here on June 14, a legal disagreement between the clerk’s office and ...

September 15, 2021
Secret audit findings hit Navy's hyped 3D printing boom

San Diego Navy labs and bases that employ so-called 3D printing technology – used to churn out everything from aircraft parts to teeth – are at high risk of hacker attacks, says a heavily redacted ...

September 13, 2021
Maybe Ed Asner didn’t help Peter Navarro

The Ed and Peter show Though it went unmentioned in last week’s coverage of his passing by the latest incarnation of the Union-Tribune, Ed Asner played various roles in San Diego politics. The Los Angeles ...

September 8, 2021
Country fans at the Renegade, fireworks fanatics, the troubles of apartment ownership

San Diegans at the Renegade explain country music The Renegade does not hide behind that generic tyranny of the latest urban middle-class version of good taste. The tavern is in-your-face like Willie Nelson with his ...

September 5, 2021
Gloria barely escapes fine for donation reporting

Gloria’s Colma casino cash When he was mayor of San Diego, Republican Kevin Faulconer was slapped with a $4000 fine by the city’s ethics commission (ultimately paid by his campaign committee) for failing to disclose ...

September 1, 2021
Rendon vs. Atkins on mandatory Capitol shots

Depending on whose ox is vaxxed It’s Democrat versus Democrat in Sacramento’s latest battle over whether to mandate vaccinations for employees, at least in the state capitol. After state Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon ordered lower ...

August 25, 2021
San Diego County wants social equity in pot regs

UCSD’s moonlighting abuse It’s an open secret that some already richly paid UCSD academic staffers have been taking advantage of lax enforcement of the school’s limits on overtime, moonlighting, and other off-the-job activity to make ...

August 18, 2021
San Diego lobbyists got record $5.5 million in 2020

The year of the big Covid-19 shutdown was San Diego city hall's most lucrative year for behind-the-scenes influence peddling. "In 2020, a total of 57 lobbying firms and 61 organization lobbyists registered a total of ...

August 16, 2021
Nancy Worlie cleans house at KPBS

Adela’s changing of the guard When San Diego State president Adela de la Torre took charge back in August of 2018, some questioned her $441,504 salary, while others wondered how much change the campus’s first ...

August 11, 2021
Allen Glick and the killing of Tamara Rand

Allen Glick, a key figure in San Diego's bloodiest and arguably most famous Mafia hit, has died, his passing marked by a paid Union-Tribune obituary making no reference to its subject's colorful and deadly past ...

August 6, 2021

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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