Tuesday, July 13, 2010

San Diego Port Fires Lobbyist Over E-mails

The Unified Port of San Diego has fired port-contracted lobbyist Susan McCabe for penning e-mails described by the head of the port commission as being in “poor taste.”

In the e-mails, obtained by an anti-development activist group and published in the Los Angeles Times, McCabe described her efforts to convince California Coastal Commission board member Patrick Kruer to vote in favor of a $228 million redevelopment project along the downtown San Diego waterfront.

McCabe discusses “spoon feeding” information to Kruer as well as encouraging port officials to put pressure on Kruer through elected officials in Sacramento. Following the CCC rejection of the waterfront project, McCabe in another e-mail referred to the CCC board members who voted no on the project as “the toxic five.” Kruer recused himself from the CCC vote on the San Diego project.

In a letter of apology sent Friday to CCC board members, San Diego port commission chairman Robert Valderrama wrote that he was appalled by McCabe’s e-mails. Valderrama assured the CCC that McCabe’s replacement would treat the board members “with the respect and the decorum that all of you deserve.”