Monday, November 3, 2008
& On "backroom deals" and supporting developer's goals to remake San Diego's historic areas over resident's objections:
Neither candidate claims to have any significant relationship with developers. & But of the two, Mr. Gloria has received the lion's share of negative press on the issue. & (See past blog comments ). & In response, Todd Gloria has very reasonable answers to his accuser's taunts. &
Honestly, this issue was my personal deal-breaker when considering voting a second time for Todd Gloria, having voted for him during the primaries. & But after speaking with him directly, my reluctance has faded. &
His idea to "increase developer fees to pay for the needed upgrades to our infrastructure that results from new density" sounds like a creative solution, since it is unlikely developers will suddenly disappear from San Diego. &
Todd Gloria won me over by saying, "There is a place for responsible development to promote business and housing, but in District 3's historic neighborhoods, it is essential to maintain the community charm that makes us the envy of San Diego." & Call me crazy but I think he's being sincere. & Why brag about being a third generation resident if the goal is to turn it into McDistrict?
Accordingly, Stephen Whitburn said equally great things: & "In a rush to build new things, we shouldn't ignore the beauty and significance of the gems that shaped this city for decades. & Balboa Park is the treasure of San Diego, and I want it to remain in public hands and serve the public interest." & Can't argue with the candidate there.
On this issue, Todd Gloria's long-time resident status, along with his commitment to protecting Balboa Park and other locations, goes a long way with me. & But both candidates seem similarly positioned on this issue, despite the negative rhetoric.
& On what makes the candidate stand apart from his competition:
Stephen Whitburn likes to point out that Todd Gloria is young and, by extension, not as politically experienced as himself. & But I don't like the connection being made between youth and incapacity to handle a big job. & Mr. Gloria sounds as though gathering law enforcement support for one's candidacy suffices when dealing with public safety issues. & But that support hardly replaces having a concrete, workable plan in place. &
Neither candidate came across as particularly persuasive to me on the point of what sets them apart. & But that's just me.
In conclusion, I realized that after an election, the accessibility of the process to citizens trumps any single issue. & When citizens have access to their representatives, better solutions result. & Since what I value most is the ability to stay involved and speak directly to my representatives, my vote is safe with either candidate as both responded quickly to requests for an interview. & But since this is an election and a choice must be made, I will choose to vote for Todd Gloria again. & His availability went beyond a response to an email. He was downright eager to listen and talk. & I like that. & His attitude reminded me of his mentor, Susan Davis, and mirrored the method of politicking that makes her so effective. & Although young, and possibly greener than the competition, Mr. Gloria's career has already started in District 3 and voting for him is an extension of this well-laid path.