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It pays to be well-connected but what if you're not? Do you still get to have a say?

Today La Jolla Town Council members got a rush E-Blast from their Executive Director alerting them to some work the city of San Diego is doing. After years of complaints about broken sidewalks and dangerously dinged curbs, the City's Streets Division is responding.

The E-Blast says that the Streets Division is updating its list of sidewalks in need of repair. The purpose of this update is "to evaluate and prioritize repairs based on severity of damage." La Jolla movers and shakers were told that their City Councilman Scott Peters is compiling a list to make sure that the sidewalks in La Jolla get the attention they deserve, and that time is of the essence to get the list to his office representative. Monday, September 3rd is the deadline.

Hold on. Isn't that Labor Day? Is there enough time between now and Monday to nominate your most broken sidewalks? Will someone be working in Scott Peters' office on Monday? And will that E-blast also reach the thousands of other San Diegans who want the city to know about their disintegrating and dangerous neighborhood sidewalks? Or is this opportunity to get your sidewalk fixed only for the well-connected?

Gloria Penner is KPBS' director of public affairs. She's been covering local, state and national politics in one form or other (radio, TV, and now the Web) for 37 years. Please read our guidelines before posting comments.

Pam Hardy
September 05, 2007 at 08:32 PM
Gloria- Yes, as a matter of fact, our La Jolla representative DID work on Labor Day, in part to complete the list of needed street repairs you mention, so that she could forward it to the Streets Department first thing on Tuesday. Our Council office received word from the Streets Department that they were reviewing their list of sidewalk repair requests in early September. Keely Sweeney, our La Jolla representative, sent an email to the leaders of as many La Jolla community groups as she could think of, including the La Jolla Town Council, asking that they in turn forward her request for input to the thousands of members that belong to those groups. Recommendations received from across the city will be evaluated, and repairs will be ranked in order of urgency. Despite this specific request for input, our office reports sidewalk and other repair requests to the Streets Division year-round. We will continue to do so on an ongoing basis. Almost each day, our office calls Streets to report whatever needed street, sidewalk and streetlight repairs we observe or that are brought to our attention by residents of the First District. We always encourage our constituents to call us when they see something in their neighborhood that needs attention, because we consider residents our best source of information. This request for input was an example of how we strive to engage community members in finding ways to improve their neighborhoods. I'm proud of the way our office represents the concerns of the residents of our several communities. Pam Hardy, Communications Director Council President Scott Peters, First District -----

Gloria Penner
September 07, 2007 at 09:47 PM
Congratulations to Council President Scott Peters and his staff for being so responsive to the Streets Department call for sidewalk repair requests. I was really impressed that a staff member worked on Labor Day to compile the repair requests and forward them to the appropriate city department. It's attention to neighborhood concerns along with hard work on citywide issues that lay the groundwork for the kind of political leadership that best serves city residents. I'd really appreciate seeing a current list of the reported broken streets, sidwalks, and streetlights that were repaired as a result of all those calls from the Council District #1 Office to the Streets Department - but only if such a list is readily available and compiling it won't detract from other office work. Gloria

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