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Eyebrows are arching and tongues wagging over Mayor Jerry Sanders's belated endorsement of Carl DeMaio for mayor, followed by Sanders being named head of the Chamber of Commerce. Remember, at this point this is only rumor, although I have reliable indirect sources. The story making the rounds is that the Lincoln Club and other Republican groups, which wanted DeMaio badly, gave millions to his campaign, expecting that Sanders would give him a last-minute endorsement, despite Sanders's known dislike of DeMaio. Ruben Barrales announced in September that he would step down as the chamber head. This may or may not toss water on the rumor. Two key questions: 1. Did Sanders endorse DeMaio, the election loser, before or after he had cut the deal with the chamber? 2. Why was Sanders's endorsement so coveted? He had backed Bonnie Dumanis in the mayoral primary, and she came in fourth. Whether or not the rumor is true, replacing Barrales with Sanders appears in retrospect to be a bad move. Latinos and labor elected Filner. Now the chamber will be headed by a downtown-obsessed white male -- the very group that was the big loser in the election. It is a slap at Mayor-elect Bob Filner, who has pledged to steer money toward neighborhoods and infrastructure and away from downtown corporate welfare projects. If the rumor is true, the chamber and business community may regret the move.

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ImJustABill Nov. 10, 2012 @ 7:15 p.m.

How much does anyone's endorsement really affect (effect? I can never figure that grammar out) any election?

I would think for major elections endorsements are pretty far below party affiliation, political positions, likeability, and advertisement spending in terms of changing outcome.


Visduh Nov. 10, 2012 @ 7:53 p.m.

You're probably right, since in this case his support didn't help Bahnee D all that much in the primary. Ahh, but politics packs a huge element of symbolism, and his endorsement probably meant a great deal to some of the local power brokers.

My question is why this dude has to constantly be in charge of something. I'd think that by now he has three separate and generous retirement checks coming in and would be ready to quit. Or is there more to the Sanders story?


dwbat Nov. 10, 2012 @ 8:34 p.m.

His Chamber salary will be about three times what he made as Mayor. That was certainly a factor in the decision.


Don Bauder Nov. 10, 2012 @ 8:39 p.m.

dwbat: Yes, he made $100,000 a year as mayor and will almost certainly make more than $300,000 at the chamber. But with Filner as mayor, I think Sanders will have little clout. Sanders has been in the pocket of the white downtown old boys' network for years, and those guys were the losers in this election. Filner is going in a different direction. Best, Don Bauder


Don Bauder Nov. 10, 2012 @ 8:35 p.m.

Visduh: Sanders's city pension is well over $100,000 a year. He will almost certainly be paid more than $300,000 yearly to head the chamber. Not bad for a college dropout with limited vision and few leadership qualities. Best, Don Bauder


SurfPuppy619 Nov. 10, 2012 @ 10:53 p.m.

Don, KFC Sanders would NEVER have made it in the real world with his background, the ONLY reason he is at where he is now is b/c he was gifted his gov workfare cop job and then was gifted him promotions. Take away his GED cop job and promotions and he would be working at Mickey D's flipping burgers.


Don Bauder Nov. 11, 2012 @ 7:05 p.m.

SurfPup: Some say he is a skilled self-promoter. Best, Don Bauder


Don Bauder Nov. 10, 2012 @ 8:31 p.m.

ImJustABill: Yes, I noted in the item that Sanders had backed Dumanis in the mayoral primary and she came in fourth. The U-T had a dismal record backing candidates, and may have cost DeMaio the election. Best, Don Bauder


Burwell Nov. 10, 2012 @ 11:23 p.m.

I think Sanders is trying to build up an estate to leave to his children. The business owners and developers that Sanders helped while mayor are paying him off by giving the Chamber money for his salary. He couldn’t take the money when he was mayor: They call that bribery. I think it was clearly understood by all that Sanders would be paid after his term ended for what did. If Sanders did a favor for a developer in 2007 and the developer funds his salary through the Chamber in 2013, I don’t know if the FBI could establish a causal link between the 2007 favor and the 2013 payment. I think it is uncharted criminal law when a payoff occurs 6 years after the favor. Situations like this should clearly be prosecutable crimes.


Don Bauder Nov. 11, 2012 @ 6:29 a.m.

Burwell: Your observation is astute. That's how the downtown overlords work. Remember that Sanders's key aide, Kris Michell, became president of the Downtown San Diego Partnership. She then gave a fat contract to Marco Li Mandri, whose closeness to Sanders was an embarrassment, given the FBI's Li Mandri report that Dumanis quashed. Under so-called "cooling off" rules, Sanders won't be able to discuss chamber matters with City officials for a year. Now, those rules have been broken with impunity, but at least they will inhibit Sanders's effectiveness a bit. Bottom line: the chamber deal stinks. Best, Don Bauder


Burwell Nov. 10, 2012 @ 11:40 p.m.

What's particulary disturbing about this situation is that the Chamber is going to hire Sanders even though it knows he can't perform the job. I read in another publication that the Chamber is going to hire a professional to backstop Sanders and perform the work he is supposed to perform.


Don Bauder Nov. 11, 2012 @ 6:34 a.m.

Burwell: I haven't read about the backstop but it doesn't surprise me. Again, Sanders should be inhibited from contacting his old government cronies for a year, although those Ethics Commission rules are not enforced equally. At least publicly, Sanders will need a backstop to do the lobbying openly. Best, Don Bauder


Visduh Nov. 11, 2012 @ 7:34 a.m.

That notion of a backstop to do the CEO's job when the boss cannot perform is heard of more and more. That was the gist of a proposal floated when Dynes was president of the UC, and was doing a dismal job. Instead of replacing a "renowned scholar", let's just get him a sort of executive VP who will do the "administrative" work and let him handle the visionary stuff! That didn't fly then, and it should never fly. Pathetic.


Don Bauder Nov. 11, 2012 @ 11:37 a.m.

Visduh: The so-called "visionary" CEO is often seen in family-controlled companies. The chief executive is in the family, but is not often at his or her desk. A classic case was David Copley at Copley Newspapers. Chuck Patrick was chief operating officer but was effectively also chief executive officer. Best, Don Bauder


Visduh Nov. 11, 2012 @ 8:37 p.m.

Agreed. And when the figurehead really has no "vision" beyond his/her navel, the enterprise soon comes a cropper. That fits David Copley to a "T", and many others. If he did have a vision, what was it, pray tell? His yacht in the Med and an opulent lifestyle was probably the extent of his vision for himself. He, more than most others, was probably thinking that the newspaper business would be the tremendous cash cow it had been for generations, and he was wrong, wrong, wrong.


Don Bauder Nov. 11, 2012 @ 10:26 p.m.

Visduh: In 2005, the U-T alone was worth $1 billion (that didn't include the Ohio and Illinois papers.) In 2009, the U-T was sold for $50 million. 'Nuf said, although to be fair, other papers were plunging in value, albeit not as far as Copley. Best, Don Bauder


SurfPuppy619 Nov. 11, 2012 @ 11:22 p.m.

That is such a shocking decline........but it was the internet that caused it, not David.


Don Bauder Nov. 14, 2012 @ 7:03 p.m.

SurfPup: Copley management did not see the new forms of electronic communications coming -- Internet chief among them. Generally, other newspaper execs didn't see the tsunami coming, either. Best, Don Bauder


laplayaheritage Nov. 11, 2012 @ 9:03 a.m.

With just the approval of the State, Mayor Bob Filner can Reallocate the annual $200 million in former Redevelopment Agency (RDA) Tax Increment (TI) from the Downtown Power Brokers to local neighborhoods, including ending homelessness, investing in economic development citywide, and Mayor Filner's planned 6-to-6 program for children's programs before and after school.

Previously the $200 million could only be used in Redevelopment Agency (RDA) Project Areas (PA). Instead of just staying downtown, the taxpayer money can now be used as the City sees fit.

Mayor-Elect Bob Filner promised to END Homelessness using a portion of the annual $200 million in former Redevelopment Agency (RDA) Tax Increment (TI) and and the $100s of million in Reserves balances siting in the bank. The annual $200 million has been hidden in numerous Civic San Diego Reserve account by the former CCDC, with the help of Mayor Sanders and City Attorney Goldsmith. Due to Strong Mayor Sanders' power over the City Council, the new Civic San Diego now hoards the Tax Increment, and the other Non-Tax-Increment revenue including the downtown Parking and Lease Revenue for the sole benefit of the Downtown Elite. Their taxpayer-funded gravy train is ending and there is nothing the Chamber of Commerce or the Downtown San Diego Partnership can do except complain about the injustice of it all.

Mayor Filner and the new City Council Democratic majority (5 to 4) can reallocate the $200 million including the County of San Diego's Tax Sharing Payments by themselves with just the help of Governor Jerry Brown, Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom, Attorney General Kamala Harris, and State Controllor John Chiang who all endorsed Congressman Bob Filner for Mayor of San Diego.

Proposition 13 Requires all Property Taxes to stay local. However the State of California is in charge of Allocating the Tax Increment between the City of San Diego, County of San Diego, local schools (San Diego Unified School District, the Board of Education, and the Community Colleges) and Special Districts, such as the San Diego County Water Authority and SANDAG.

The annual @ $200 million in Tax Increment is still separated from regular property taxes and is divided according to the 1992 Agreement for Cooperation between the City's RDA and the County of San Diego. However the City and County have never Enforced the 1992 Agreement to spend the TI money on Children, Mentally Ill, Seniors, and Handicapped San Diegans.

Then there is also another @ $20 Million in Non-Tax-Increment Revenue from City-owned Leases and Parking Revenue that Civic San Diego took from the General Fund along with Affordable Housing funds. Civic San Diego is an Enterprise Funds and has to be self-supporting through user fees on Developers, and in theory cannot be subsized.


Don Bauder Nov. 11, 2012 @ 1:48 p.m.

laplayaheritage: At one time, both Los Angeles and San Francisco suffered from the San Diego disease: the money was hogged downtown and didn't get to the neighborhoods. However, both Los Angeles and San Francisco changed that. San Diego can, too. Best, Don Bauder


Burwell Nov. 12, 2012 @ 10:45 a.m.

Had Copley Press had waited six months to sell the midwest papers, they would have fetched a firesale price. Copley Press would have been unable to repay its loans and would have been forced to file bankruptcy. David Copley missed total financial destruction by no more than 90-180 days. He's very lucky that he unloaded the midwest papers on a knife catcher for a decent price.


Don Bauder Nov. 12, 2012 @ 2:20 p.m.

Burwell: Yes, as I have written several times, dumping those Ohio and Illinois papers on GateHouse Media for $380 million was one of the best moves the former Copley management ever made. You are correct: the timing was perfect. In the next six months, newspaper values collapsed and the price would have been much lower. GateHouse, of course, completely collapsed. Best, Don Bauder


Anon92107 Nov. 12, 2012 @ 12:33 p.m.

Thank goodness San Diego has people with integrity running City Hall once again like Filner and Frye to protect us after far too many decades of corruption from 3 republican mayors who damned near destroyed quality of life in San Diego.

However, we still need someone to keep Manchester from continuing the era of republican betrayal, so you are the only one with the power to fight back for San Diego against the most threatening oligarch in our history.

Keep up the great work Don.


Don Bauder Nov. 12, 2012 @ 2:24 p.m.

Anon: The person who will destroy Manchester's newspaper is Manchester. He is well on his way to doing that right now. Best, Don Bauder


Anon92107 Nov. 13, 2012 @ 11:53 a.m.

Great News! The sooner the better because he is a total failure politically but that won't stop him from creating as much damage to San Diego's future as he can.

Could you form a group to buy it out and create a newspaper that people, especially younger generations will want to subscribe to so people can get the truth for a change to make San Diego and the world a better place for future generations?

It would be a most wonderful legacy to negate what the republicans have been trying to do.


Don Bauder Nov. 13, 2012 @ 8:46 p.m.

Anon: I'm too old to organize a group to buy a newspaper. And I am afraid I would have trouble raising money for the purchase. Print newspapers are on the way out. Newspapers using the Internet and the various new platforms have had trouble making money in the process. Best, Don Bauder


Anon92107 Nov. 14, 2012 @ 11:52 a.m.

I understand, thanks for the GREAT WORK that you have done reporting the truth as long as you have, you have most certainly made a difference.

While Barbara Bry was founding editor of VOSD we exchanged comments, and she appeared to be very dedicated to making the right things happen while she was there.

Barbara is the only other person I can think of, and it is especially a major coincidence that she and her husband are serial entrepreneurs writing a column in the U-T. I guess it would to much to hope for that they would care to takeover and produce a cultural value for truth at the U-T that younger generations might like to subscribe to.


Don Bauder Nov. 14, 2012 @ 6:59 p.m.

Anon: Barbara Bry didn't last long at Voice of San Diego. Then she and her husband, Neil Senturia, started a San Diego online news operation that bombed out. Best, Don Bauder


SurfPuppy619 Nov. 12, 2012 @ 7:36 p.m.

I think Filner will be fine as Mayor as well..........As I have said earlier, he stood up to President Bush (I) many years ago, I thought he was in congress then but maybe he was on the council, that act always impressed me.


Don Bauder Nov. 12, 2012 @ 8:21 p.m.

SurfPup: One of Filner's major objectives is to keep the downtown overlords from hogging all the money for corporate welfare projects, and begin spreading the money to neighborhoods, infrastructure, and maintenance. If he accomplishes that, he will have made a tremendous step. Best, Don Bauder


Burwell Nov. 15, 2012 @ 10:34 p.m.

Filner’s task now is to raise money to fund the Democratic Party’s operations in San Diego County. He will seek funding from the same corporate interests that bankrolled DeMaio’s campaign. The 6 to 6 program will cost maybe $10 million a year to fund and Filner will probably divert another $20 million or so from Civic San Diego’s annual budget to pay for street repairs so he can say he fulfilled his promises. He will leave the majority of Civic San Diego’s funding in place and downtown development will continue at a little slower pace. There’s little difference between a Filner and a DeMaio administration. DeMaio would have slashed employee pay to raise cash to pay for pet projects while Filner will merely raise taxes to pay for those same projects. Like every man Filner has a price. The downtown overlords will find that price. You've been had.


Don Bauder Nov. 16, 2012 @ 6:10 a.m.

Burwell: At some point, the downtown overlords may realize that for public relations purposes, they should at least slow down their sticky-fingered grabbing of money for downtown corporate welfare projects. Filner's election may show that the public is wising up to this thievery that has been going on since Pete Wilson set up Centre City Development Corp. decades ago. In the last few years, even CCDC has tried to put more emphasis on infrastructure and socially useful kinds of spending. That doesn't mean CCDC will back away from the preposterous football stadium proposals. Nor does it say that CCDC has become enlightened. It simply means that CCDC is exhibiting SOME public sensitivity. Best, Don Bauder


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