The Morning Report
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San Diego is plagued by the same frustration as other cities across California when it comes to dealing with homelessness: Everybody wants to see solutions; no one wants to see the solution anywhere near them.
That brings us to Clairemont, the site of the latest resident revolt. A developer and nonprofit plan to build a 52-unit supportive permanent housing project there. Neighbors pushed back intensely. Eventually, the developer agreed to limit the project only to senior citizens, and it shared other plans for security meant to tamp down residents’ fears.
One resident quoted by NBC memorably said: “We don’t want to become the capital of homelessness in San Diego.”
Supporters of the project, including prominent politicians, helpfully pointed out that if a homeless person was living in such a unit, he or she would no longer be homeless.
Lisa Halverstadt delved into how the project, and residents’ reactions to it, have evolved over the last several months.
One of the main stakeholders involved said the saga offers lessons for how the city and developers should approach future projects: They’ll need to educate and involve residents to succeed.
• The City Council voted 5-2 Monday against proceeding with City Councilman David Alvarez’s proposed November ballot measure to increase hotel taxes to fund homeless programs. Only Alvarez and Councilwoman Georgette Gómez voted to back the measure, which Alvarez estimated could have pulled in $130 million over five years.
Now eyes turn to another proposed hotel-tax hike pushed by labor and tourism leaders that would fund a Convention Center expansion, homelessness initiatives and road repairs. Though the county registrar of voters continues to review initiative signatures, the City Council has set the stage for a Thursday vote on whether to send the measure to the ballot.
Hot in Herre: Ocean Edition
The whole country is starting to worry about San Diego’s warm ocean water. NPR, the Washington Post, Forbes and others have checked in over the last week, warning that “we can expect the frequency of record-breaking incidents to increase.”
In this week’s Environment Report, Ry Rivard highlights one way the warm water could have a negative impact: It could harm local kelp forests, which “are home to lots of marine life, like sea urchins and fish, including baby fish.”
Another heat wave, by the way, is supposed to start Tuesday.
Speaking of warm water: California lawmakers got back to work Monday, and delved right into some very important issues: They sent a bill to Gov. Jerry Brown that would make surfing the state’s official sport.
What the Future Holds for SDSU
The City Council Monday voted to extend the lease between the city and San Diego State University to allow the Aztecs to continue playing football at the former Chargers’ stadium in Mission Valley through 2020.
Meanwhile, the university has shed more light on what it would like to see happen in Mission Valley: “it wants to build a technology park similar to one in Atlanta that’s attracted such giants as Boeing, Panasonic and AT&T,” reports the Union-Tribune.
What San Diego Question Should We Answer Next?
We launched another voting round for The People’s Reporter, a feature where the public can submit questions, readers vote on which questions they want answered and VOSD investigates.
Dozens of people have submitted questions about our region. We picked the top three and now you get to vote on which one you want us to answer next.
Last month, readers asked us to investigate whether the Hilton Bayfront Hotel’s pool was supposed to be open to the public as part of a land use deal. We figured it out, to the dismay of many of those who’d long believed the myth of free pool access.
In Other News
- In an op-ed, Ann Moore questions why the Airport Authority joined a lawsuit that threatens funding for a new waterfront development in the South Bay without first notifying and trying to work with the Port. Moore, a Port commissioner from Chula Vista, said she wonders if the Airport Authority “would have acted differently if this project was slated for San Diego or North County.”
- NPR casts doubt on the government’s claims about a mother being held in San Diego who’s still separated from her 3-year-old child.
- A network of temporary shelters for asylum-seekers arriving at the San Ysidro Port of Entry is beginning to take shape. (Reader)
Some East County water users will start seeing higher rates beginning in November. Also in East County: A Casa de Oro community group got a $500,00 grant from SANDAG that will help pay for a revitalized Campo Road. (Union-Tribune)
- SeaWorld attendance numbers are up, reports the Union-Tribune, but the company is still feeling the impact from the “Blackfish” documentary that exposed questionable practices and forced millions of people to ponder the ethics of animal captivity. SeaWorld is in the midst of federal investigations and a class action accusing it of misleading shareholders about how the film contributed to falling attendance and revenue.
- A new documentary, “Black’s Beach: San Diego, California,” chronicles the history and current state of of the local stretch of sand through dozens of interviews with local surfers, lifeguards, historians and, yes, some of the people who like to enjoy the secluded beach sans clothes. (Union-Tribune)
The Morning Report was written by Sara Libby and Kinsee Morlan.