For decades, cities in North County have opted for a regional response to the homelessness crisis. The idea being that if they collectively contribute funding to the few homeless shelters in that part of the region, they could all tap into those resources.
But now, because of mounting pressure over a worsening crisis, city leaders are being forced to either lean in or opt out of that approach, our Tigist Layne writes.
Just last month, the city of Escondido decided to part ways with the network, also known as the Alliance for Regional Solutions. Escondido voted to pull the $50,000 it previously contributed to a homeless shelter in the city because officials were concerned that only 60 percent of clients became homeless in Escondido.
And recently, Vista opted to reimburse shelters based on the number of Vista homeless residents who get a bed. The city previously contributed $200,000 up front.
So, what does this mean for North County’s regional response? Layne explains that some leaders are worried that if more cities leave, it could mean a drastic reduction in services for North County’s homeless population.
San Diego’s New Safe Camping Site Is Open
San Diego’s second safe sleeping site is now open.
City officials provided a tour Friday of the site located on the edge of Balboa Park, also known as the O Lot. The site’s first residents were set to move in on Saturday, officials said.
Voice intern Hannah Ramirez reports that 21 tents of the 400 planned were ready last week. And she found that there are more than 120 people already on a waitlist.
Politics Report: The Homeless Ruling
From the governor to some of the biggest cities are arguing that one court case is keeping them from cleaning up homeless encampments.
Background: A 2018 ruling in Martin v. the City of Boise prohibited cities from enforcing anti-camping provisions on unhoused individuals if no suitable shelter was available for them. Now, a court has ruled that the city of Grants Pass could not cite a homeless resident for illegal camping if there isn’t suitable shelter for them.
Gov. Gavin Newsom, the city of San Diego and a bevy of other elected leaders want the U.S. Supreme Court to weigh in.
In the latest Politics Report, Scott Lewis breaks down their arguments and why everyone says they want clarification.
VOSD Podcast: For our latest episode, our hosts chat about the three San Diego Police officers running for office. They also get into Coronado’s new housing plan and an update on the Barrio Logan Planning group’s meeting dilemma. Listen to the full episode here.
In Other News
- In the latest Cup of Chisme, our Andrea Lopez-Villafaña profiled a community group in the neighborhood of Stockton that has been advocating for street lights and more. Read the Sunday newsletter Cup of Chisme here.
- NBC7 reported that the House of Israel for Balboa Park’s international cottages has decided to close until further notice due to vandalism and concerns for volunteer safety.
- According to SANDAG, an underground railway may be coming to North County. This idea stems from concerns on the erosion of bluffs and threats of rising sea levels that affects the current COASTER route. (FOX5)
- 147 affordable housing units are set to be built on MTS property starting Feb.2025 at the Spring Street Transit Center in La Mesa. (Times of San Diego)
- A plan to develop a safe parking site in Oceanside for those living in their cars will be presented in January to City Council. (KPBS)
The Morning Report was written by Andrea Lopez-Villafaña and Hannah Ramirez.