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Committee Agrees To Re-Do Police Oversight Ordinance After Community Backlash

 June 25, 2021 at 11:24 AM PDT

Speaker 1: 00:00 Critics force a revision in plans for the new police oversight commission. Speaker 2: 00:05 They will work on this until it, you know, until these concerns are addressed. Speaker 1: 00:11 Maureen Kavanaugh, this is KPBS midday edition. Speaker 3: 00:24 [inaudible] the Speaker 1: 00:24 Eviction moratorium is not enough to keep some San Diegans in their homes. Speaker 4: 00:29 You give someone cash and you ask for their keys. Like you incentivize them to leave. If you can increase rents so that in the next 12 months, you could make an additional $4,000. It is worth it to you to give someone 2,500 or $3,000. Speaker 1: 00:47 What's on stage at the old globe and more on our weekend preview that's ahead on KPBS midday edition. After strong opposition from critics, a San Diego city council committee has agreed to make changes in its first try of setting up the rules and regulations for the new commission on police practices. The commission was established by voters who overwhelmingly approved the city's measure B last fall. It replaces the community review board on police practices by giving them the new police oversight group subpoena power and independent investigative authority to review police shootings and in custody deaths. But the draft ordinance released by the city council earlier this week was criticized for containing loopholes and red flags that critics say could water down the authority of the new commission. Joining me is reporter Kelly Davis writing for voice of San Diego and Kelly. Welcome to the show. Speaker 2: 01:51 Hi, thanks Maureen. Now this draft Speaker 1: 01:53 Ordinance got pounded by critics for being both too little and too late. The draft was expected over a month ago, wasn't it? Speaker 2: 02:02 Yeah, there's been a group of, of advocates who've been meeting since shortly after measure is passed, you know, to discuss what they'd like to see in this draft. And they were told to expect a draft ordinance before more Morial day that came and went. Then they were told, you know, June 16th or 17th, that deadline came and went. Then they were told to expect it on June 22nd, which would give them only two days to review it before a big meeting on June 24th, where a city council committee was going to discuss the, what was in the draft. So San Diego's Andy Keats reported on Monday about the frustration with, with this, you know, lack of a draft to review. And shortly after his story was published, um, Monday morning, a draft was released and folks were able to look over it, you know, starting that afternoon, but it still gave them two and a half days before the meeting to review it. And, um, I should add the, that it was the city attorney's office that was, was writing the draft ordinance. Now the Speaker 1: 03:09 Group that promoted measure base San Diego for justice spoke out strongly against sections of the draft ordinance. What were some of their major concerns? They Speaker 2: 03:18 Felt wording in certain sections wasn't precise enough. And for that reason opened up the possibility that that certain powers the commission was promised could be undermined. Uh, for instance, Andrea St. Julian who authored measure B she's an attorney, she felt the section on subpoena power, which was so important to measure, be supporters the way it was worded. It could potentially limit their ability to issue subpoenas to only certain situations. Folks were very clear that they wanted to have a community panel that would nominate members of the commission, but the ordinance, the way it's written now, it doesn't explicitly allow for that. Um, and I spoke with, I had a couple experts in police oversight, take a look at the draft and they both pointed out a number of issues. Um, for instance, uh, the, the, the draft did not obligate the police chief to respond to commission recommendations, which, you know, could come off as the chief just ignoring, you know, work that the commission has put into investigating allegations of misconduct. One Speaker 1: 04:27 Of the big stumbling blocks to seems to be that the commission rules under the draft ordinance would be subject to collective bargaining negotiations with police unions. And that was sort of a thing that the, uh, measure B supporters do not want to see in that final ordinance. Yeah, Speaker 2: 04:45 Well, while the police union can invoke a process called meet and confer over aspects, um, if there's anything in this ordinance that will impact working conditions, they could, um, you know, trigger process called meet and confer. But, um, the language about the ability to meet for this collective bargaining process between the city and the police union, this would happen behind closed doors, um, you know, experts and the community groups. Um, they just felt like the language was, was, was way too strong on that and could potentially allow, uh, collective bargaining to, to undermine, um, you know, various aspects of, of, of measure B. Now the Speaker 1: 05:34 City council committee that was reviewing this draft ordinances, headed by a council member, Monica Montgomery step, what was her reaction to this criticism? And, uh, what was the action, uh, reaction of other council members to this criticism? Speaker 2: 05:49 So council member, Montgomery steps, she's been kind of the point person on, on measure B on getting this, this draft ordinance written. And she had been working with city attorneys and she understood, you know, the community concerns. She assured folks that, that this is just a draft. Um, so, so the public safety and, um, neighborhood services commission that she chairs, they said, you know, we're not going to vote on this. Um, they had their meeting yesterday morning. We're not going to vote on this. We're going to continue working on this. And she said, she makes sure that community concerns are addressed. So Speaker 1: 06:27 Actually the what happens now, who's going to be revising the ordinance. Speaker 2: 06:31 It'll go back to the city attorney's office, but it will go back with this list of concerns that Kenny members have brought up. And Speaker 1: 06:40 The San Diego for justice actually, uh, had a response to the draft ordinance. They called it the community ordinance is the city council going to consider it? Speaker 2: 06:49 Definitely. Yeah, that will be part of, kind of the package that travels, you know, with this draft back to the city attorney's office for revisions and council member, Montgomery steps said, this is going to be, you know, an ongoing process that, you know, they will work on this until it, you know, until these, these concerns are addressed and a fellow council member, um, Marnie Von Wilpert. She promised that the folks who supported Mader major B will get the robust police oversight that they, that they wanted to see. Speaker 1: 07:24 I've been speaking with voice of San Diego reporter Kelly Davis and Kelly. Thank you very much. Thank you, Maureen. Speaker 3: 07:37 [inaudible] governor Speaker 1: 07:39 Newsome and legislative leaders propose to extend the statewide eviction moratorium to the end of September and increase rental relief. In spite of these programs, some people have already lost their homes, race and equity reporter. Christina Kim explores what might happen when all the protections are finally lifted. Speaker 5: 08:00 And I feel bad for my kids. I felt that I had let my kids down as a man being able to support them and keep a roof over their head Speaker 6: 08:07 With mine still remembers the fear he felt when he was evicted from his home in Chula Vista. Last December, he's worried about the impact it's having on his children. Speaker 5: 08:16 And even my youngest daughter, my three-year-old would always ask when we were not home, she was like, I'd go home. And she would cry eviction. Speaker 6: 08:24 [inaudible] we're supposed to keep people housed during the pandemic, but with men, miss paying rent for a few months and his landlord didn't renew his lease, he met at the Aveda is a senior attorney at the legal aid society of San Diego. He says with mine should never have been evicted in Speaker 2: 08:38 A normal situation. That's not something that a tenant could be evicted under the state protections. Speaker 6: 08:43 It shouldn't have happened, but with man's experience is not unique. Even with the moratorium, landlords were technically able to evict tenants. If they moved into the property themselves, sold the property or wanted to withdraw the, from the rental market altogether Speaker 2: 08:57 In February, there probably had been about almost a thousand sheriff lockouts since the beginning of the pandemic. Speaker 6: 09:04 Now with protections set to expire in the coming months and rental relief money only just beginning to trickle out advocates and city officials say there will be more evictions. Ginger hit ski is a local landlord. She says that even if all the rental assistance is fully dispersed, she expects a major turnover in the rental market due to surging housing prices. In some cases, landlords are incentivizing tenants to Speaker 4: 09:28 You, give someone cash and you ask for their keys. Like you incentivize them to leave. If you can increase rents so that in the next 12 months, you could make an additional $4,000. It is worth it to you to give someone 2,500 or $3,000. Speaker 6: 09:46 It was particularly vulnerable to evictions because it doesn't have an established housing rights culture. According to Grace Martinez, director of ACE, San Diego attendants rights organization, you go to Speaker 2: 09:56 LA a tenant receives a notice and they will think, where do I need? How do I fight this in San Diego? When a tenant receives a notice, they're thinking I'm going to, where am I going to find a place to live Speaker 6: 10:09 Martinez? So San Diego needs to create a culture where people know their rights, a big part of that is having access to legal help. But according to the left leaning center for American progress, nationwide only 10% of tenants have legal representation in court cases compared to 90% of landlords, Vera says without legal help, tenants can find themselves on the street. Fast Speaker 2: 10:31 Eviction cases are one of the fastest moving lawsuits through the court systems. So a tenant can, can, you know, without if they don't respond quickly and meaningfully, they could be evicted within two months from when the landlord filed the eviction. Speaker 6: 10:48 Earlier this month, the San Diego board of supervisors approved a draft plan that would allocate $15 million of federal money to provide legal services and counseling for tenants. Speaker 7: 10:56 Aye, motion passes unanimously with all supervisors being present. Speaker 6: 11:00 And there could be another silver lining on the horizon for both tenants and landlords. Governor Newsome recently released a plan to pay it all back rent Vera of legal aid says without that type of help, people will be pushed into a cycle of housing insecurity. Speaker 2: 11:13 Uh, because then they're, they're in a situation where not only are they being displaced, but they're also saddled with these, this mountain of debt that they might not be able to ever to recover, which impacts their ability to be able to rent in the future, especially in a city like San Diego or a county like San Diego, where housing is a competitive commodity, despite Speaker 6: 11:33 All, all of these programs with MUN, the Chula Vista tenant is still uncertain about what the future holds. Once all the protections Speaker 5: 11:40 Are gone, understand what people are going through the one, yeah. Get back to normal life. But, uh, we're going to pay the price. Speaker 6: 11:49 He found a new place to live and is looking for work. But even now he's worried he'll be evicted again. Christina Kim KPBS news Speaker 1: 11:58 KPBS, investigative reporter, Claire triglyceride contributed to this story this weekend in the arts, the old globe comes alive again with some in-person events, a music festival in city Heights and the return of receptions at Quint gallery. Joining me with all the details as KPBS arts editor and producer Julia Dixon Evans, and welcome Julia. Speaker 8: 12:26 Hi Maureen. Thanks for having me Speaker 1: 12:29 In the visual art world. Let's start with what's going on at Quint gallery and the Hoya they've been open awhile, but this is their first event since the onset of the pandemic. Can you tell us about it? Speaker 8: 12:40 Yeah. So they're celebrating two artists on Saturday. There's the already on view solo exhibition. That's at the main gallery. That's local fav Kelsey bricks. His work is really brainy and psychedelic. And one of my favorite things about this exhibition of his work is that it pulls from a bunch of different series spanning 12 years of his work. So there's a ton of variety, lots of detail to take in. And they're also showing a new work in their Quint. One space that's just half a block away. It's a huge abstract tapestry by Nicholas Glennon. And some of us might've seen his Indian land installation in desert X this year. It was modeled after the Hollywood sign. And that is actually still on view through the summer. Glennon is an indigenous clean-cut artists that's based in Alaska. So it's really exciting that we have a chance to see two of his pieces in Southern California. Right now Speaker 1: 13:42 The quaint gallery opening reception is Saturday evening from six to eight. It takes place at both locations on Gerard avenue in LA Jolla. Next there's a free live music and dance festival in city Heights on Saturday. Tell us about music and [inaudible]. Speaker 8: 14:00 Yeah, this is hosted by booty tree concerts. And it's at the center line LA, which is right there, a university in 41st street in the heart of city Heights. And there's a little free library and some crafts for kids, international foods, arts vendors, but then they also have a full schedule of performances. These are all outdoors, and that runs from noon until about 6:00 PM. You can catch performances of indigenous dance from Mexico. There's mariachi. There's a rapper from Liberia, Chinese opera, flamenco dancers, even Fern street circus will be there and they'll have off-road Cuban jazz. They'll also have narrow on Tyco, which is a Japanese drum group. Here's a little clip from their presentation at a local Ted talk production that was in 2019. Speaker 3: 15:18 [inaudible] Speaker 1: 15:18 That's narrow on Taiku, who will perform at Bodhi tree's music and the kayak festival. It takes place Saturday in city Heights, beginning at noon. Now onto the old globe. There's two in-person events on your radar this weekend. And let's start with the free pride version of word up live. Speaker 8: 15:38 Yeah, I'm really loving the transformation of this pandemic era project word up that is turning into an in-person show, but the upside is they're still doing a virtual simulcast of the performance as well. And this is their Madlibs masterclass, kind of a participatory jam session. And two weeks ago is the first one. They held onsite at the old globe. Actually it was the first onsite. Anything at the globe since the pandemic began, it all takes place in their outdoor Plaza. And the pub is open for refreshments this week. They're celebrating pride with drag artist and singer songwriter, Jay Piper, Rosewall Rosewell, notably one at Craig NOLA word for their performances, Hedwig in the diversionary production of Hedwig and the angry inch. There'll be music. There's a discussion of drag performance and art and true to the word up format. I'm guessing there'll be some collaboration with the audience and to warm things up. There's also a pre-show DJ set from Mickey veil that starts at five o'clock. Speaker 1: 16:44 Okay. So word up live. The pride edition is Friday afternoon at five 30 and finally, and this is not quite a musical, but it's close that Tony nominated Carmen Kuzak has performing at the Globes Lowell Davies festival theater in three performances this weekend. Tell us what we can expect. Yeah, Speaker 8: 17:06 Qstack was nominated for that Tony for her role in Brightstar, which was the Steve Martin and ed Berkow bluegrass musical that had first premiered at the globe in 2019 before it headed to Broadway. And this weekend shows they're billed as an evening with Carmen Cusack. So I think we can expect a pretty broad selection of music. She's also known for playing alphabet in Wicked's north American tour, but I'm sure there'll be plenty of her bright star hits. Uh, here is Kuzak singing the tune so familiar from the Broadway cast recording of Brightstar Speaker 3: 17:49 [inaudible]. So when you came through [inaudible] Speaker 1: 18:36 And evening with Carmen, Kuzak at the old globe takes place Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at 8:00 PM for details on these and more arts events or to sign up for Julia's weekly arts newsletter, go to And I've been speaking with KPBS arts editor, Julia Dixon Evans. And thanks, Julia. Speaker 8: 18:59 Thank you. Have a great weekend.

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Following strong outcry over a number of loopholes and potential red flags, the San Diego City Council’s Public Safety & Land Use Committee has agreed to send its new ordinance on police practices back to the drawing board. Plus, while early pandemic predictions of a tsunami of evictions seem unlikely, advocates are worried that there could still be a steady stream. And this weekend in the arts: Kelsey Brookes and Nicholas Galanin at Quint, drag artist Jaye Piper Rosewell, a City Heights music festival, and outdoor music at The Old Globe.