Wall Street Journal tells of officials looking gift horse in the teeth
Today (June 19) the Wall Street Journal asks if San Diego once again merits the apt appellation "Enron by the Sea." (The New York Times originally came up with the oft-repeated description a decade ago.) The Journal tells how in 2009, real estate consultant Jason Hughes offered to renegotiate 550,000 square feet of leases of City office space free of charge. But the City took four years deciding whether to take Hughes's offer or a deeply discounted offer from Cassidy Turley. Eventually, Cassidy Turley got the nod from a panel appointed by the City. But current Mayor Bob Filner overturned the panel's recommendation and went with Hughes, saying the deal would save the City $15.7 million over six years. Cassidy Turley got the job as a result of politics, says Filner. Now Cassidy Turley says the mayor's choice of Hughes was strictly political. Cassidy Turley says "Nothing is actually for free."