skip to main content









Donation Heart Ribbon

Hundreds Of San Diego Newsracks Lack City Permits, Report Finds

The city of San Diego fails to collect thousands of dollars each year in permit fees for sidewalk newsracks, according to San Diego County grand jury report released today.

Newsracks in the Core-Columbia neighborhood of San Diego.
Enlarge this image

Above: Newsracks in the Core-Columbia neighborhood of San Diego.

According to the report, there are hundreds of newsracks on city sidewalks that lack a city permit and are defaced with graffiti or stickers.

The report examined the permit status and condition of 555 newsracks on city property.

Thirty-nine percent of those newsracks and one-third of the publications do not have a city permit, which costs $15 per rack annually, according to the report.

Graffiti, stickers and broken windows on about 30 percent of newsracks "tarnishes San Diego's image as 'America's Finest City,'" the report states.

According to the report, the city's enforcement efforts are hampered by the lack of a searchable, sortable database of permitted newsracks.

Neighborhood Code Compliance, which issues the permits, works with paper permit applications submitted by publishers and distributors, which are inconsistent in format and contain numerous inaccuracies, the report found.

The grand jury also examined newsracks along the Embarcadero and on several trolley platforms.

It found neither the Port of San Diego nor the Metropolitan Transit Systems regulate newsracks, yet racks abound on their properties, and many are in poor condition.

The grand jury recommended that both groups adopt a newsrack ordinance.

To view PDF documents, Download Acrobat Reader.


Avatar for user 'JuliusZsako'

JuliusZsako | April 25, 2012 at 8:48 a.m. ― 4 years, 11 months ago

The report is correct that graffiti, stickers and broken windows on about 30 percent of newsracks "tarnishes San Diego's image as 'America's Finest City". Graffiti control and prevention experts agree that prompt removal is essential. The Broken Windows Theory states that maintaining and monitoring urban environments in a well-ordered condition may stop further vandalism and the escalation into more serious crime. The theory was introduced in a 1982 article by social scientists James Q. Wilson and George L. Kelling. Recent works such as DEFACING AMERICA - The Rise of Graffiti Vandalism provide additional evidence to the validity of "broken windows."
Julius Zsako,

( | suggest removal )