It’s uncertain whether a new, less ambitious minimum wage increase in San Diego will clear all the political hurdles needed to get passed. But the City Council is anticipating the increase will pass and they’ve begun labor union negotiations to figure out how the increase would impact pay and pensions at the city itself.

“Not that many city workers would be affected under the revised $11.50 proposal City Council President Todd Gloria unveiled this week,” reported Lisa Halverstadt. But regardless of the number of employees affected, pay increases can mean changes to pension estimates and the City Council had put the issue of pay to bed with five-year labor deals last year.

Increasing Transparency, Opaquely

Ari Bloomekatz reported on how a recent San Diego County Board of Supervisorsvote on transparency issues shows how much room for improvement the County has when it comes to… transparency issues. “The board weighed in on transparency and communication issues without any time for members of the public to so much as read the report being voted on,” Bloomekatz noted.

Victimizing Immigrants: San Diego Explained

Criminals often target undocumented immigrants for victimization due to a higher likelihood of that crime not being reported to police. The victimized immigrants often cite the fear of being reported as one reason they don’t report crimes committed against them. Scott Lewis joined NBC San Diego’s Catherine Garcia to break down what laws protect immigrants who report crimes and how police are working with them in our most recent San Diego Explained.

Taxi Reforms? Probably Not

Last year we told you about a report highlighting how San Diego’s taxi cab industry is miles behind on taxi safety standards. There were also concerns about work conditions for taxi drivers. A process, which ended on Thursday, began originally to see if San Diego wanted to wrest control of regulating the taxi industry from the Metropolitan Transit System. The result? “MTS will continue to regulate the industry and few changes are expected,” KPBS reported.

• Meanwhile, taxi operators are teaming up with local law enforcement to push car-sharing services like Lyft and Uber away from the airport, partially because those services’ cars aren’t inspected for safety. The shared vehicle’s engine might not be working and it might blow up on the freeway, according to one taxi driver.

News Nibbles

• A bizarre data breach at the Rady Children’s Hospital has exposed thousands of peoples’ “names, dates of birth, primary diagnoses, medical records and insurance carrier claim information.”

• Governor Jerry Brown will be in San Diego on Friday to sign his new budget for California.

• A new lawsuit filed by three women accuses the San Diego Police Department of being “an incubator for sexual predators” and allowing nepotism to make way for officers like accused officer Christopher Hays.

• Mayor Faulconer caught an earful from a standing room-only crowd in La Jolla, concerned about permit fees, prevailing wage laws, and (of course) the Childrens’ Pool. (La Jolla Light)

• An audit of California prisons between 2005 and 2012 determined that 39 female prisoners had been forced into surgical sterilization without their consent. The women’s stories inspired new proposed legislation in the state.

• San Diego Gas and Electric promised some electric-car owners that they could keep their discounted electric rates through 2014, as part of an extended study. But instead, the company doubled those people’s rates without telling them.

• A giant talking robotic giraffe from San Diego marveled President Obama on Wednesday.

Make Smores, Not Wars

Ocean Beach residents are trying to end the war – the marshmallow war, that is. It’s the battle that takes place on the sands of Ocean Beach every July 4th, leaving the beach covered in sticky marshmallows and other waste. The local town council told NBC San Diego the event causes a mess and says remnants of last year’s fight can still be seen on the boardwalk. But supporters aren’t having it, and are pledging to take the sandy field of battle once more with their soft, delicious ammunition. “What are you going to do? Arrest a bunch of people? I don’t think so,” said one supporter.

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Originally posted at Voice of San Diego.

Seth Hall is a local writer, technologist and marshmallow war contentious objector. You can email him at or follow him on Twitter:@loteck.