If there is one thing I have heard from the public during my nine-and-a-half years in office, it’s that people want solutions to the problems they deal with every day. They don’t want to hear excuses; they want a plan.
And when people take the time to make their voices heard, they really appreciate it when their representatives actually listen.
So let me tell you some of what I’ve heard from you that helped in drafting Prop D for the November ballot:
You value your neighborhood parks and recreation centers, and you’re disappointed in the cutbacks in programs that represent constructive, healthy activities for kids in your community.
You do not want to see your libraries closed any more than they already are, and you’d like to be able to visit on Sundays again.
You want more community policing and code enforcement and you’re worried about how long it’s going to take an EMT to reach your home when you call 911.
You’re tired of driving on roads riddled with potholes and walking on cracked and broken sidewalks.
If that was all I heard, I might have voted to put a sales tax measure on the ballot without first requiring reforms. But I didn’t, because you had a few other messages for me and my fellow city leaders.
You told us you want the pension problems fixed, costly perks eliminated, and our benefits to be more like those in the private sector.
You want managed competition enacted and our workforce to become more efficient.
You want us to think differently about how we do business, live within our means, and solve our ever-present budget problem without causing you more problems.
You want us to set aside partisan politics, stop the blame game and put an end to costly court battles.
You want public safety services restored and more neighborhood code enforcement and policing.
And while you appreciate the $150 million in reforms and the $180 million in budget reductions that have already been made, you want permanent reforms that solve the problem.
We have the opportunity, with Prop D’s requirement of reforms before revenue, to solve our structural deficit once and for all — a feat that has eluded this city for decades, but that should by no means be considered impossible.
Prop D is a reasonable and workable solution that will allow the city’s problems to be solved by everyone working together on a defined set of reforms, rather than continuing on the same path of endless deficits and ongoing cuts to critical city services.
You’ve told us you wanted your leaders to show you a way out of the city’s chronic fiscal woes and endless service cuts. Prop D is that solution. Vote yes.
Donna Frye is a member of the San Diego City Council from District 6. She lives in Clairemont.