Rendering courtesy of Douglas Hamm

Today the City Council is set to gather behind closed doors for a third time to discuss lease negotiations for a warehouse that could house a 1,000-bed homeless shelter.

Concern about what the city may pay to rent the Middletown warehouse has dominated the discussion about San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria’s vision for the project. Our Lisa Halverstadt, though, tried to answer another question: What exactly is the city’s plan for the shelter? It would be the biggest the city has ever had, except for when it temporarily converted the Convention Center to a shelter during the pandemic.

The idea is for a shelter campus with an array of services. The building’s owner even got some renderings done that splash the warehouse with verdant vistas.

Halverstadt asked experts, service providers and people with experience staying in shelters to weigh in. The foremost concern: Whether the city can successfully shelter such a large number of people in one place.

Read the full story here.

Related: Father Joe’s Villages, the region’s largest homeless service provider, told The New York Times it’s putting some affordable housing plans on hold due to skyrocketing insurance bills.

Politics Report: Vargas Has a New Chief of Staff

Fresh off the contentious search for a new executive to lead county of San Diego staff, County Supervisor Nora Vargas, who is chair of the Board of Supervisors and SANDAG lost her latest chief of staff after only a couple of months. But she has already named a new one.

That and a take on all the blowback politicians like Vargas are facing for their plans for homeless shelters in the region are in this week’s Politics Report from editor-in-chief Scott Lewis. (Vargas folded pretty quickly on a plan for sleeping cabins in Spring Valley.)

Read the Politics Report here. 

Sacramento Report: DeMaio Accused of Exceeding Money Limits

Assembly candidate Carl DeMaio is facing investigations for alleged campaign finance violations, in the contentious race for the 75th Assembly District.

The California Fair Political Practices Commission is investigating complaints filed by an attorney representing DeMaio’s opponent, fellow Republican Andrew Hayes. They claim DeMaio accepted campaign contributions over legal limits, and exceeded voluntary spending limits as well.

That’s a big deal, the attorney, Alex Tomescu said, because it means that DeMaio could have received the benefits of the spending limits without their limitations.

“If you are exceeding it while accepting that spending limit, I think it’s a deception of the public,” Tomescu said.

DeMaio's team didn't directly address the complaints and said it was just a smear.

Read the full story here.

City Council Wants Equity Money Restored in Budget

It was clear from Friday’s debate over Mayor Todd Gloria’s proposed budget that city councilmembers remain dissatisfied that some of the inevitable spending cuts hit programs built to support the city’s least fortunate.

“This budget is balanced on the backs of those who have the least,” Council President Sean Elo-Rivera said.

Mackenzie Elmer and Halverstadt rounded up all their points about what they don’t want cut. But what do they want to cut?

Read their full story here.

In Other News

  • Brown Field is going to get a makeover. (NBC San Diego)
  • San Diego has a new police chief. Scott Wahl was officially sworn in. Imagine what’s in the folder they hand the new police chief when he finally gets the job.

The Morning Report was written by Lisa Halverstadt, Scott Lewis and MacKenzie Elmer. It was edited by Scott Lewis.

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