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Dumanis opposes declaring San Diego schools bankrupt

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-Staff Report-

SAN DIEGO — District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis, a Jewish candidate for mayor who believes San Diego’s government should take a more active role in how the schools are run, announced opposition to School Board member Scott Barnett’s suggestion that the district should declare itself bankrupt and let the state fix the fiscal problems.

“San Diegans don’t want to see our schools declared insolvent and turned over to the state for the same reason they didn’t want the City of San Diego to declare bankruptcy in 2005 – it’s a cop out that turns our destiny over to others instead of solving the problem.  San Diego took the tougher path of reform, and the result is a better city government.  The same needs to happen at San Diego Unified.

“A state takeover of our schools would be a disaster for our kids, and our local economy.  No CEO is going to relocate their company to a city where their employees’ kids will be attending schools that have financially gone belly up, and a state takeover would only make it easier for the governors of other states who come to San Diego and attempt to lure businesses and jobs away.

“I’ve put forward a plan to directly confront the problems that have contributed to the financial issues at San Diego Unified, including a new, independent financial oversight board and a Mayor’s Education Liaison.  When we see problems persist over years over different administrations, it’s a sign the problems are structural, requiring structural solutions.”

Meanwhile, Bob Filner, another Jewish candidate for mayor, scored an endorsement from the American Federation of Teachers — an organization to which he has an affinity as a former history professor at San Diego State University.  In other City of San Diego races, AFT Local 1931 endorsed Jewish community members Mat Kostrinsky in the 7th Council District, Councilwoman Marti Emerald in the new 9th District.   And in San  Diego Community College District B, the AFT announced its support for another Jewish community member, Bernie Rhinerson, a former political consultant and college instructor.

For partisan office, the AFT gave a reelection nod to Congresswoman Susan Davis (53rd Congressional District) and a push up the political ladder to Marty Block, who wants to step up from the state Assembly to the 39th state Senate district.

Filner, meanwhile, has scheduled a fundraising event on Saturday, May 12, at the La Jolla Farms home and gardens of trial attorney Bill Lerach and Michelle Lerach. The suggested contribution is $100, but according to the invitation “any amount welcome” up to $1,000 maximum per couple.   Councilwoman Marti Emerald is among members of the event’s host committee.

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Preceding compiled from news releases

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