By Chris Ward
This last year, we accomplished quite a lot for District Three and the City of San Diego. With so much going on in these fast-paced times, it’s often difficult to remember all our progress. To have the most up-to-date information available to residents, I have made sure my city website includes neighborhood policies, accomplishments and my ongoing work plan.
I’m excited to share with you that this year I will be continuing my chairmanship of the Economic Development & Intergovernmental Relations Committee. I have also been appointed Vice Chair of the Committee on Active Transportation & Infrastructure and Vice Chair of the Committee on Land Use & Housing. Additionally, I have been appointed to the Board of Directors of the Metropolitan Transit System (MTS) and as Chair of the Regional Task Force on the Homeless (RTFH).
With these appointments I have an opportunity to address our most pressing concerns, including the need to move homeless families and individuals off our streets and into the types of attainable, affordable housing that all San Diegans deserve. San Diego is uniquely positioned to utilize its land — and its financial and political strength — to implement desperately-needed changes to address our housing shortage. Safe, stable homes are critical to the constituents we serve, the sustained growth of our economy, and the opportunities for future generations.
In the past two years, our City Council has taken critical steps to make progress on the dual crises of homelessness, and insufficient affordable and workforce housing. However, we are not keeping up with population demands. The persistent failure to meet this need has jeopardized both individual dreams and our city’s future.
I intend to ensure policies are drawing on best-known practices and innovative solutions, so we are able to finally implement a deliberate and holistic plan to house our homeless, ensure development of affordable housing is proportional to our overall housing stock, and further prioritize much-needed supportive housing units.
This year, I will be continuing bi-monthly community walks to bring city business and policy to your door. As residents, you are entitled to know what your elected officials are doing, why it’s important and its impact on your neighborhood. I also want to hear directly from you about what your concerns are and how I can better advocate for the city services you depend on. If you have any questions regarding this outreach program or would like to suggest neighborhoods that my team could visit, please feel free to contact my office.
This month, I will issue a memorandum to our Independent Budget Analyst stating our district’s budget priorities that will continue to develop a spending plan and that balances fiscal responsibility, while making bold investments in San Diego’s future.
Our budget is a reflection of the values of our communities. It illustrates my commitment to making San Diego an equitable city that is growing responsibly and addresses the needs of all neighborhoods and residents. Throughout this budget process, I intend to fiercely advocate for solutions to homelessness, create safe and livable neighborhoods, fulfill our Climate Action Plan, and expand initiatives that support the mobility of healthy citizens in a safe, accessible and vibrant San Diego.
I encourage everyone that is able to participate in this process and share your priorities with my office. Please contact me with your thoughts or with any questions you have at 619-236-6633 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
—Councilmember Chris Ward serves the 13 communities in District 3, which include the Uptown neighborhoods of Old Town, Mission Hills, Hillcrest, University Heights, North Park, South Park, Normal Heights, Bankers Hill and others.