Dallin Mifflin with his dog Lita at La Posada de Guadalupe shelter in Carlsbad on Dec. 13, 2022.
Dallin Mifflin with his dog Lita at Catholic Charities' La Posada de Guadalupe shelter in Carlsbad on Dec. 13, 2022. / Photo by Ariana Drehsler

For years, North County has only had three homeless shelters with a grand total of 144 beds. That total is dwarfed by the nearly 800 homeless individuals in the region recorded during the previous federally mandated count.

But, as Tigist Layne writes, that imbalance could soon begin to shift. 

Oceanside, which has the largest homeless population in North County, is working to open its first shelter and a new family shelter operated by Interfaith is also slated for a July opening. And a Carlsbad shelter, which once only housed men, is moving forward with an expansion to take in women and children.

Still, North County service providers anticipate an increase in the unsheltered population in the region when the latest results of the federally mandated count are released in the coming weeks. They argue more funding is needed to ramp up shelter production in the area.

Read the full story here. 

Montgomery Steppe Nets Another Labor Endorsement

Councilwoman Monica Montgomery Steppe / File photo by Adriana Heldiz

Laborers Local 89 announced Wednesday that it had endorsed Councilwoman Monica Montgomery Steppe’s bid for county supervisor. This means she has another major institutional supporter ahead of the August special election.

The thumbs up from the Laborers is her second from a union that has both significant interest in county government, but also money to spend to make its support meaningful in an election where ballots drop in just six weeks. She also won the support of SEIU Local 221, which represents over 10,000 county workers. The San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council, of which both unions are a part, is going through its endorsement process. YIMBY Democrats of San Diego County, one of the county party’s largest and most active groups, also endorsed Montgomery Steppe.

At this point, Montgomery Steppe is facing a fellow Democrat in Janessa Goldbeck, a nonprofit leader and LGBTQ and veteran advocate, who has endorsements from high-profile elected Democrats like state Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins and Rep. Scott Peters. Amy Reichert is the lone Republican in the race.

  • The Laborers polled the race before their decision, finding Montgomery Steppe leading the field with 20 percent of the vote, ahead of Reichert and Goldbeck at 18 percent and 12 percent respectively. After respondents heard both positive and negative details about each candidate, Montgomery Steppe’s support moved to 30 percent, with Reichert and Goldbeck at 27 percent and 18 percent respectively.

The Laborers also polled some respondents on how they’d vote if the field included Raquel Vasquez, Lemon Grove’s mayor, who has considered getting into the race. Kelvin Barrios, the union’s policy and community engagement director, said they didn’t include the results with Vasquez in a memo on the poll because she came in last place in all scenarios, and because they haven’t received any official indication that she’s actually running.

Street Vendors Say San Diego’s Rules Are Making Vending Impossible 

It has been nearly a year since the city of San Diego’s street vending rules went into effect. When officials OK’d the city’s sidewalk vending ordinance, they hoped to strike a balance between supporting small businesses and addressing public safety and health concerns from merchant associations. 

How the rules are working out: At a Wednesday community meeting inside the Logan Heights Library at least a dozen sidewalk vendors complained that the law is making vending impossible. They raised concerns about “over enforcement,” harassment from business owners and confusion over permits.

“This is just a travesty,” Ursula Koening, a jewelry vendor, said.

The City Council plans to review, and consider, changes to the ordinance this summer. 

Other rules: Many also complained about the Port of San Diego’s “opportunity drawing,” a sort of lottery system that vendors enter for an opportunity to get a six-month vending permit. 

Clothing vendor Barbara Sandle said if vendors are lucky, they can sell items for six months, but after that they don’t a space for six months. She said that’s not realistic.

Bonus Episode: All About Freeways 

Last week, KPBS reporter Andrew Bowen joined our host Andrew Keatts to discuss Bowen’s new podcast, “Freeway Exit.” Now, we have a full episode of their nerdy unbridled passion for freeways and transportation. 

In this full interview, they dug into the archival footage Bowen found to inform his series. They discussed a freeway decommissioning that’s in the works in San Diego right now. And, some history: How President Dwight D. Eisenhower championed freeways and their proliferation throughout the country. They also discussed freeway revolts by local communities and a glimpse into a possible future of freeway use in the region.

Listen to the bonus episode. 

In Other News 

  • A federal judge ordered the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department to unseal internal records related to the deaths and injuries of 12 people in custody, but those records won’t be released to the public right away. The Union-Tribune, Voice of San Diego and Prison Legal News petitioned a judge for access earlier this year. (Union-Tribune)
  • Father Joe’s unveiled plans for two new buildings in East Village as part of its long-term effort to create 2,000 affordable housing units for homeless people. (Union-Tribune) 
  • The mother of a man who died while experiencing a mental health crisis in a San Diego County jail has sued, alleging guards failed to prevent his death. (CBS)

The Morning Report was written by Jakob McWhinney, Andrew Keatts, Andrea Lopez-Villafaña and Jesse Marx. It was edited by Andrea Lopez-Villafaña. 

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