Morning Splash: Oakland Delays Pot Plan, OKs Ballpark Study; 6 to Go On Trial in Rape Case
- Oakland Council votes to suspend implementation of cannabis cultivation ordinance until next year (Oakland Tribune)
The Oakland City Council voted in closed session Tuesday to suspend implementation of its program to permit and tax industrial-sized medical marijuana cultivation businesses and increase the number of dispensaries until the new cultivation law can be amended to address concerns expressed by law enforcement.
- Newsom scrambles to land America’s Cup (Matier & Ross, SF Chronicle)
San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom is working around the clock in a last-ditch effort to keep the city’s bid for the America’s Cup alive – even as Larry Ellison openly courts Newport, R.I.
“We are in the red zone,” Newsom said Tuesday evening.
- Richmond High gang rape case: One defendant walks, six going to trial (Contra Costa Times)
Six defendants on Tuesday were ordered to stand trial in the Richmond High School gang rape case, while all charges were dismissed against the seventh and youngest defendant. Judge Gregory Caskey said he did not find sufficient evidence of criminal behavior by Cody Ray Smith, 16, of San Pablo. His family broke down in tears when they heard he would be released from juvenile hall Tuesday night.
- Oakland City Council OKs money for new ballpark study (Oakland Tribune)
The Oakland City Council voted Tuesday to spend as much as $750,000 on an environmental study for a new ballpark south of Jack London Square, even though the owner of the Oakland A’s is trying as hard as he can to move the team to San Jose. The council voted 6-2 to hire LSA Associates to conduct a study that examines the physical and environmental impacts of building a 39,000-seat, baseball-only stadium at the so-called Victory Court site southeast of Jack London Square, between Fallon Street and Lake Merritt Channel Park. In order to build the park on the site, businesses such as Peerless Coffee would have to move.
- Demand for food up 41% (SF Chronicle)
San Francisco saw a 41 percent increase in people asking for help feeding themselves and their families this year compared with last year, according to a new survey of homelessness and hunger by the U.S. Conference of Mayors.
- Pride parade organizer in financial hole (SF Examiner)
A Controller’s Office report determined that the San Francisco Pride Celebration Committee, the group in charge of organizing the annual parade and accompanying events throughout The City, is $225,000 in debt. With just six months to go until the next Pride weekend, the organization has furloughed its entire paid staff and had several of its leaders flee in recent months.
- Hercules city manager to step down; speakers call for mayor to resign (Contra Costa Times)
The Hercules City Council on Tuesday ratified its decision to terminate the former interim city manager, announced the imminent departure of the current city manager, and gave a 60-day notice of cancellation to its affordable housing contractor. But much of the drama at the special meeting came during the public comment session, when several residents asked Mayor Ed Balico to resign, and former mayor Frank Batara likened the West County Times’ reporting on Hercules municipal affairs to Nazi propaganda.
- San Jose city manager moves to fire cop involved in videotaped beating (San Jose Mercury News)
Rejecting a more lenient recommendation from the San Jose Police Department, City Manager Debra Figone is moving to fire a cop for using “unnecessary and unreasonable” force during a secretly videotaped 2009 arrest of a Vietnamese college student, the Mercury News has learned. The department had recommended veteran Officer Kenneth Siegel be suspended without pay for raining more than a dozen baton blows on Phuong Ho, an aspiring actuary studying at San Jose State.
- 4 San Mateo County beaches closed due to bacteria contamination (Bay Area News Group)
Sanitary sewer overflows poured into city streets at the height of weekend storms, causing health officials to close four beaches due to bacteria contamination. San Mateo County Environmental Health officials have posted signs closing the beaches until further notice. They are Linda Mar Beach and Rockaway Beach in Pacifica, and Lakeshore Park and Aquatic Park — both in San Mateo’s Marina Lagoon. A beach closure affects swimmers, not foot traffic. Excessive levels of indicator bacteria, such as E. coli, could make people sick if the water is consumed.
- DUI task force tactics drawing scrutiny (Santa Rosa Press Democrat)
…Besides probation searches and warrant checks, the task force, which officially is known as the Avoid 13 campaign, conducts sobriety checkpoints, saturation patrols and undercover court stings to make sure people aren’t driving on suspended or revoked licenses. The group, which includes members of all 13 of the county’s law enforcement agencies, is in the final year of a three-year, $659,000 grant funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and administered by the state Office of Traffic Safety.
- San Rafael council wants more Target studies before vote on store (Marin Independent Journal)
A proposal to build a Target store at the Shoreline Center in East San Rafael could be kicking around for months after the City Council unanimously agreed it needed more studies before making a decision on the project. Just before midnight Monday night, the council asked city employees to commission a “community impact” report on the proposed 137,000-square-foot store with an expanded grocery section.
- 2009 layoffs shrink Silicon Valley total pay, but average pay per job rises (San Jose Mercury News)
Average pay per Silicon Valley job grew slightly to $98,165 a year in 2009, even as the region’s total payroll was driven sharply down by steep job cuts, according to a federal report released Tuesday. Santa Clara County saw a 5.6 percent, $5.2 billion cut in total employee compensation, according to the report by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. The report calculates compensation as total wages and employer contributions for employee pension and insurance funds. Average pay went up even as total pay declined because there were fewer workers.
- Stanford’s ideas generate $65.1 million in revenues (San Jose Mercury News)
new report card for one of the nation’s most powerful innovation engines shows that Stanford-based inventions generated $65.1 million in income for the university in 2009 despite the recession — up from $62.5 million the previous year. Stanford’s total earnings from inventions were $1.1 billion during the past four decades, with more than half coming from just two inventions: the hypertext searching used by Google and groundbreaking DNA-splicing technology, according to an annual survey by the Association of University Technology Managers.
- Undocumented California youths vow renewed activism (LA Times)
Devastated by the Senate’s failure last week to grant them a path to citizenship, undocumented young people throughout California are vowing renewed activism to win legal immigration status if they attend college or serve in the military. With the highest number of undocumented young people in the nation, California is already the epicenter for student advocacy on the issue and for legal breakthroughs granting them in-state tuition.
- With Obama’s Signature, ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Is Repealed (NY Times)
The military’s longstanding ban on service by gays and lesbians came to a historic and symbolic end on Wednesday, as President Obama signed legislation repealing “don’t ask, don’t tell,” the contentious 17-year old Clinton-era law that sought to allow gays to serve under the terms of an uneasy compromise that required them to keep their sexuality a secret.