Todd Gloria State of the City
Mayor Todd Gloria gives his 2022 State of the City Address at the San Diego Convention Center on Jan. 12, 2022. / Photo by Adriana Heldiz

At the beginning of each year, the eyes of San Diego public affairs nerds, newscasters and surely some normal people turn to San Diego’s mayor for the State of the City address.

Slated for Jan. 11, 2023, Mayor Todd Gloria has to speak to the entire city and tell us what’s up.

The aim of this address has varied over recent administrations. Some mayors, like former mayor Jerry Sanders, used videos to illustrate the promise of new parks and stadiums yet unrealized. Former mayor Kevin Faulconer made big announcements for upcoming initiatives.

This will be Gloria’s first such address with a crowd, since the first two were closed to the public due to pandemic restrictions. (His actual, first-ever State of the City address was as interim mayor after the resignation of Bob Filner.)

So what’s to come: A big announcement? The revival of #sexystreets? A list of #gettingitdone accomplishments? Expectation setting for a rocky year ahead?

This week on the VOSD Podcast, hosts Scott Lewis, Andrew Keatts and Andrea Lopez-Villafaña look back at State of the City addresses past and make predictions for the next. Of course, among the key issues is homelessness.

Is homelessness a housing issue? A big question — and an argument many make as the region, and much of the country, grapples with housing crises. On the pod this week, Lewis reviewed data from various U.S. cities to assess what, if anything, could be a persistent and clear correlation with homelessness.

The cost of housing was the biggest correlation to homelessness according to the numbers laid out in this week’s show. Further, as San Diego has ramped up its job market in the last 20 years — especially for high-paying tech jobs — housing costs have swelled, pushing homes out of reach for many.

Plus: Universal transitional kindergarten has landed — and it’s changing education in San Diego. Our hosts discussed what some parents have experienced in this new era of education and how UTK boosted school enrollment at San Diego Unified, which has been slumping for years.

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Nate John is the digital manager at Voice of San Diego. He oversees Voice's website, newsletters, podcasts and product team. You can reach him at

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  1. Every San Diego Mayor since Pete Wilson invited me over for the big speech except Gloria. Do the voters understand that this man does not practice equality. WHY I marched in Pride and even model a thong bikini taking heat from the same straight folks who fly flags during Pride. America, you need professional help!

  2. I just listened to the latest Podcast, Thank You! I think that Scott’s point about the gap of 44,000 between jobs and homes created between 2000 and 2020 was really powerful. Bear in mind that San Diego County STARTED in the hole, based on this report by the City of San Diego to HUD in 1996: “More than 47,000 of these total households (39,391 renters) pay more than 50% of their income to cover the cost of housing. The high cost of housing has a particularly severe impact on very low-income families who are left, following rent payment, with little disposable income to cover the costs of such vital items as food, clothing, health care, and transportation.

    “The San Diego Regional Task Force on the Homeless (RTFH) estimates that there are approximately 4,500 homeless persons in downtown San Diego, with another 550 to 600 homeless in the beach communities. The RTFH cites the following factors as the most common reasons for homelessness: inability to pay high rent; residence was demolished or condemned; inability to remain in former family household; mental illness or substance abuse; and ill health.

    “Shelters for the urban homeless take a variety of forms in San Diego. They range from emergency beds to transitional programs which combine housing with needed social services. In all, there are approximately 2,600 shelter beds serving the homeless in urban areas of the City. However, these beds only address 40 percent of the total need among the urban homeless population.”

    As for “growing wealth” vs. “keeping it cozy” as you mentioned at the end of this segment — clearly this has not been at all balanced. Those “keeping it cozy” are those with the wealth to maintain it. It’s always how can the rich get richer, not how can our most vulnerable live in dignity.

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