Cody Petterson poses at his home in La Jolla, CA.
Cody Petterson poses at his home in La Jolla, CA. / Photo by Brittany Cruz-Fejeran for Voice of San Diego

Cody Petterson, candidate for San Diego Unified school board’s District C, isn’t shy about who he is and what he believes. Petterson will talk your ear off about his background in environmental activism and progressive politics, and his numerous policy goals. He’s an ardent supporter of ethnic studies and community school models, and thinks his experience working on education policy will help him secure money to increase funding per pupil in the district.

His left-leaning politics and support of the district’s pandemic-era policies create a stark contrast with his Republican opponent Becca Williams. But even given Petterson’s teacher’s union backing, Williams has raised significantly more funds over the course of the campaign.

Despite Petterson’s lofty ideals, there’s a more existential worry that plagues him –– namely that the many societal problems we face may be too big, and that it may be too late to realize the systemic changes he believes are necessary to preserve a prosperous, livable future. But he also believes schools are the best place to put those changes into motion. 

Read more about SDUSD board candidate Cody Petterson.

The Raschke Family Is Home 

Though they have no furniture, Natalie happily moved their two plants into the apartment after Dustin took the boys to football practice. / Photo by Peggy Peattie for Voice of San Diego

The homeless family of six that Voice of San Diego profiled earlier this summer now has a Mission Valley apartment to call home. 

Our Lisa Halverstadt and contributor Peggy Peattie in June documented the Raschke family’s struggles as they tried to secure housing in San Diego’s punishing housing market and care for their four children despite the many travails they faced. The family’s story spurred City Council President Sean Elo-Rivera to invite Natalie Raschke to speak to the City Council about their experience and why the city’s existing safe parking lots for people living in vehicles didn’t work for them. The City Council then voted to expand the hours at one of its safe lots, explore potential safe lot locations in every City Council district and establish family-friendly zones at each site.

Last week, the family moved into a three-bedroom apartment. 

Read about how the family is doing now.

California Avoids Further Colorado River Water Cuts, for Now

The Colorado River salinity basin in Yuma, Ariz. / Photo by MacKenzie Elmer

San Diego and the rest of California won’t have to shoulder any mandatory water cuts from the Colorado River next year, unlike Arizona, Nevada and Mexico.

The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, the federal government’s water manager, unveiled Tuesday how it predicts this decades-long drought will affect major reservoirs next year. The levels of those reservoirs serve as a barometer for how much water the river’s seven basin states and Mexico can receive.

The Colorado River, the largest freshwater source for the western U.S. and northwestern Mexico, provides enough water for 40 million people and fuels a massive agricultural industry. 

The bureau announced for the first time that Lake Mead, the reservoir behind the Hoover Dam, was so low, due to prolonged drought fueled by a changing climate, that parts of the West would have to bank on taking less water from it in 2023. Those cuts weren’t a surprise. They were already in the stars under a 2007 drought plan to prepare for such a crisis. 

In June, the federal government warned Colorado River basin states that if they didn’t figure out how to reduce water use by 4 million acre feet (a tremendous amount or about how much California takes from the river, its largest user) come August, the feds would tell them how. That hasn’t happened. Some states haggled over a deal, but didn’t make that deadline. But the feds didn’t throw the hammer down either or provide a new deadline for states to come up with a plan to cut water use.

Yet the levels at Lake Mead are hovering dangerously low, almost to the point where California might feel major impacts. 

Read more about what that means for San Diego here.

What County Supervisors Did on Tuesday

County supervisors unanimously approved emergency plans pushed by board Chair Nathan Fletcher to stem overdose deaths in county jails.

NBC 7 reports that the measure included $200,000 for body scanner technology to keep drugs from ending up in jails and that the board also signed off on a new county compensation ordinance that called for expedited staffing incentives to help improve care in jails.

County supervisors on Tuesday also unanimously voted to move forward with planning to potentially create a by-name list of homeless residents to better track their needs and serve them, City News Service reports.

10 News reported that supervisors also voted 4-1 to back San Diego Rep. Sara Jacobs’ federal legislation limiting what reproductive health data companies can collect and keep.

In Other News 

  • In a new op-ed, former city architect Michael Stepner and housing advocate Mary Lydon argue that design, climate action and diverse housing options need to be considered as the city prepares to select a development team to overhaul the Sports Arena site.
  • Fox 5 San Diego reports that San Diego Unified now expects not to require masks districtwide when school resumes later this month.
  • Times of San Diego reports that a federal judge on Monday denied a request to force the county to make immediate changes to jail policies to try to stem deaths in those facilities.
  • The Union-Tribune reveals UC San Diego made nearly 9,500 fewer freshman admission offers this fall to try to deal with a boom in demand hitting the University of California system. 
  • A federal judge ruled that a lawsuit challenging the city’s vaccine mandate for its employees can proceed, Times of San Diego reports. 
  • Try to stay cool, San Diego. 10 News reports that the state’s Independent System Operator has issued a statewide flex alert to try to reduce energy use and avoid power shutoffs from 4 to 9 p.m. Wednesday. 

The Morning Report was written by Jakob McWhinney, Lisa Halverstadt and MacKenzie Elmer. It was edited by Andrea Lopez-Villafaña.

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