2015 20th Annual Goldens
VISIONARY LEADERSHIP AWARD:
Over a decade in the making, a 12-acre community park visited by thousands daily now replaces what was once a parking lot on San Diego's waterfront. The recreational space serves San Diegans of all ages and incorporates drought-resistant native horticulture, solar-powered lighting, and recirculated water in its large interactive fountains. This investment in San Diego’s bayfront has enhanced the vibrancy and quality of life in our world-class city.
GRAND GOLDEN WATCHDOG AWARD:
San Diego County Sheriff’s Department’s Veterans Moving Forward Program
Without adding any additional staff time or expenditures, the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department created a program that helps incarcerated veterans re-integrate into society. This program saves taxpayers about $550,000 in incarceration costs per inmate each year. In its first year, the program released 77 inmates without recidivism.
METRO GOLDEN WATCHDOG AWARD:
City of San Diego for its SDPD Recruiting and Retention Program
After several years of elevated officer attrition, negotiations led to $92 million in compensation increases for officers over five years while staying within the bounds of Prop B.
REGIONAL GOLDEN WATCHDOG AWARD:
County of San Diego Planning Development Services for its Permit Streamlining
San Diego’s permitting process has been upgraded to an online platform. Solar permit requests previously requiring nearly six hours of wait time in office are now approved within 24 hours via online submission. Permits for minor building projects are now instantly approved online.
GRAND GOLDEN FLEECE AWARD:
City of Encinitas & Encinitas Unified School District – Pacific View Profiteering
The City of Encinitas and the Encinitas Unified School District (EUSD) fleeced the taxpayers over the transfer of the Pacific View Elementary School Property. The Encinitas Unified School District Board of Trustees rejected an offer of $4.3 million made by the city of Encinitas in November of 2013 and demanded at least $9.5 million for the property. Two appraisals have been completed – one for $3.3 million, and another for $7.3 million. The City paid $10 million with no plan or funding to rehab the property.
METRO GOLDEN FLEECE AWARD:
City of San Diego – Portland Loos
The city failed to properly investigate the sites chosen for the restroom facilities, resulting in the need for utilities to be brought in and seismic retrofitting improvements to be made. The facilities cost $560,000 – twice the initial estimate of $260,000 given by the manufacturer.
REGIONAL GOLDEN FLEECE AWARD:
CalTrans - Water Wasters
CalTrans continues to draft, adopt and implement freeway embankment landscape plans that include plants and grass heavily dependent on California’s scarce water. In San Diego County alone, 750 million gallons of potable drinking water are squandered on beautifying land that will never be walked on – an amount that could supply 5,700 typical households with potable water each year.
Public-Private Partnership AWARD:
City of San Diego & RAD LAB – QUARTYARD
The city was looking for temporary tenants to fill a vacant East Village lot until a permanent development would be built. RAD LAB entered into a lease with the City that allows a percentage of their QUARTYARD project’s net revenues to be paid to the Housing Asset Fund. The project provides community capital by making use of a space that would have otherwise still been a dirt lot - with no liability to the city or taxpayers.
MEDIA WATCHDOG AWARD:
Megan Burks | Voice of San Diego - “Whack-A-Mole City Enforcement Keeps Slumlords In Business"
10News Team - “Sheriff’s deputy kept county car and gas card”