San Diego, besieged by burgeoning budget woes, is trying to sell naming rights for its grass-growing. “The City is looking for a corporate marketing partner to provide yearly monetary support in three areas,” says a January request for proposals.
Between $125,000 to $200,000 in annual funding, cash and in-kind per the solicitation, is sought for the Toro Agronomy Scholarship Program and to cover the cost of “turf care products for all three city golf courses (Torrey Pines, Balboa Park, and Mission Bay).” Another requirement is “an annual monetary contribution to support City essential services including Parks & Recreation programs such as ‘Nature Play,’ ‘P.L.A.Y. Golf’ and ‘Kids to Canyons.’”
In return, says the request, “the City will provide exclusive marketing opportunities to the selected sponsor as an official partner of the City.
San Diego police chief Shelley Zimmerman, who must retire this year under terms of a generous pension program, otherwise known as DROP, has been chowing down on a final round of freebies, per her 2017 financial disclosure report, filed February 8. Gifts included a $150 jersey from the San Diego Gulls and a $100 dinner at the Major City Chiefs Conference from Nice Investigate of San Mateo, providers of “digital policing” software. San Diego steakhouse owner Dan Shea threw in a $250 Salute to Champions dinner ticket.
Among Zimmerman’s personal financial assets was a stake in cell-phone chipmaker Qualcomm, valued at between $100,000 and $1 million. In all, the Shelley Zimmerman Trust posted more than $100,000 in annual income for the city’s top cop, who gets a $176,500 salary as chief.