Student volunteer note-takers Joshua Hangartner, Sophia Brotman, Maya Couey and Charlotte Izadi with La Jolla Country Day School, and Aaron Price Fellows Jazz Steppe and Sophia Rosas contributed to this story.
Tired of hearing about Politifest, yet? No way, right?
This year we delivered some of the most fascinating conversations with leaders, policy experts and advocates on our state’s most pressing issues: housing and water. We are making all the session recordings live on our site today for those who missed out on Politifest 2023.
We’ve already told you about the spicy County Supervisor debate, Attorney General Rob Bonta’s interesting revelations on the live podcast and eye-opening stats from a discussion with the author of the largest study of homeless people in the state.
But, boy, we have so much more for you. Here’s a sneak peek:
An Unaffordable City
(Left to right) Saad Asad, YIMBY Democrats board member, and Geoff Hueter with Neighbors for a Better San Diego at Politifest 2023 at the University of San Diego on Oct. 7, 2023. / Photos by Vito di Stefano for Voice of San Diego
Our Scott Lewis led a debate on SB 10 between Saad Asad with YIMBY Democrats and Geoff Hueter with Neighbors for a Better San Diego.
The law allows for any parcel of land to be turned into up to 10 units of housing without the same level of review typically required. It’s optional for cities to implement.
While the city of San Diego considered it, it did not move forward, and the subject became quite polarizing. The panel gets into that and more.
What It’s Like Being Homeless
Individuals with lived experience on the street joined our Lisa Halverstadt for an eye-opening discussion on what it is like to be homeless.
We were joined by Natalie Raschke, who we featured last year after the city towed her family’s RV, homeless service worker Levi Giafaglione, who was once unhoused, and Vic, who has been homeless for more than 20 years.
They all touched on the challenges of living on the street and accessing services.
“The system isn’t set up for people to get out of homelessness,” Raschke said.
The Housing Battle
Our Tigist Layne led a timely discussion with small city leaders about the challenges state housing policies have created. Coronado Mayor Richard Bailey, Encinitas Mayor Tony Kranz, State Senator Catherine Blakespear and Ricardo Flores, executive director of Local Initiatives Support Corporation San Diego, weighed in.
As we reported, Attorney General Bonta broke some news at our event about his office’s efforts to get the city of Coronado to comply with state housing laws. The beach city has openly defied the state’s efforts.