Donna Frye, the former city councilwoman, who was the first to call for Bob Filner to resign this last summer for sexually harassing women, held a news conference Thursday, Sept. 19th and used the opportunity to lash out at the ex-mayor who resigned in disgrace at the end of August.
Former Democratic Assemblywoman Lori Saldana backed out of the San Diego mayor's race Wednesday and threw her support behind Councilman David Alvarez.
The area's progressive leaders attempted to draft Saldana for the Nov. 19 special election to finish the term of Bob Filner, who resigned in disgrace last month. She filed papers signaling her intent to run, but her campaign stalled when Alvarez gained the endorsement of the San Diego and Imperial Counties Labor Council, an umbrella group that represents unions in the region.
Alvarez is in his third year on City Council, representing Barrio Logan and South San Diego neighborhoods.
"David's commitment to standing up for our communities tells me he's the best choice," Saldana said. "David has a strong record of supporting neighborhoods and protecting the environment, and San Diegans can count on him to do the same as mayor."
Though Alvarez has only been a council member since 2010, he said in that short time he's saved several community programs from getting cut, showing he can get things accomplished quickly.
Alvarez said, "I came in, I presented a budget that ensured that we cut where we need to cut like in take home vehicles, cell phone usage, traveling for staff, and what we've done is we've turned it around. The city is building more hours in libraries, recreation centers are open. And there aren't any fire stations that are browned out."
Saldaña said she's not worried about Alvarez's lack of experience, even when Alvarez is compared to other mayoral candidates.
She added, "I have never served in office until I was elected into state legislature. When you're smart and you understand education you know how to learn, and that's important throughout your career and he'll make an excellent mayor and will pick this up very quickly, when he's in the mayor's office."
Meantime, the Neighborhood Market Association endorsed former Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher for mayor. The association represents 500 independent retailers. Fletcher also got the backing of the California Small Business Association.
He is also supported by several individual unions, including those representing the city of San Diego's white collar workers, firefighters and lifeguards. He has also been endorsed by Union Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 230 and the Southwest Regional Council of Carpenters.
Councilman Kevin Faulconer, a Republican who represents the city's beach areas and Point Loma, has been endorsed by the San Diego Hotel-Motel Association and the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce, which is led by CEO Jerry Sanders, Filner's predecessor in the mayor's office.
Ex-Mayor Bob Filner resigned in disgrace Aug. 30, with more than three years left on his four-year term. If no one candidate receives the majority of the votes Nov. 19, a runoff between the top two vote-getters will be held.
Photo from media partner 10News.
City Councilman David Alvarez launched his campaign for mayor of San Diego Monday, while his chief rival for progressive and union votes, former Assemblywoman Lori Saldana, signaled her intention to enter the race.
Alvarez and Saldana join Councilman Kevin Faulconer and former Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher in the race to fill the final three years of disgraced ex-Mayor Bob Filner's term. Around 30 candidates have signaled their intention to run in the Nov. 19 special election.
Alvarez touted the values instilled in him by his parents as he grew up poor -- and at one point, homeless -- in Barrio Logan. He said San Diegans share his values, but the municipal government doesn't always reflect them.
"The city has neglected the needs of neighborhoods and vital infrastructure, and has focused instead on giving taxpayer subsidies to well-connected special interests," Alvarez told reporters. "The city has been beset by corruption, conflict and scandal."
He said the upcoming election provides the choice between the conflicts and corruption of the past or moving forward to build a brighter future.
"We believe that San Diego needs a mayor with the right values and a record that reflects them," Alvarez said. "We don't need slick politicians, we need trusted public servants. We are people who stand by our values, who care about each other and come together to find solutions."
The councilman received an endorsement Friday from the San Diego and Imperial Counties Labor Council, which funded Filner's victorious campaign last year. He has championed union causes in the past, including July's initial passage of a prevailing wage ordinance.
Saldana made a presentation to the labor council, an umbrella group that represents the unions in the region. Fletcher has already received endorsements from individual unions for the city's white-collar workers and firefighters.
The latest to candidates to enter the race were Democrats David Alvarez, a member of the San Diego City Council and Lori Saldana,a former member of the state assembly. City Councilman Kevin Faulconer also announced that he was running for mayor in the special election to replace former mayor Bob Filner who resigned as part of a settlement with the city over allegations of sexual harassment of women.
CLICK HERE to listen to Faulconer discuss his candidacy on the Bob "Sully" Sullivan Show the day he announced.
Former City Councilman Carl DeMaio announced last wek that he will not run for mayor of San Diego and instead continue his previously announced candidacy for Congress in 2014. DeMaio lost to Bob Filner in November of 2012 in a close race. Also announcing that they had decided not to seek the mayor's job in the special election in November were city council president Todd Gloria and county supervisor Ron Roberts.
Former 2012 mayoral candidate Nathan Fletcher formally announced what was expected, that he will run for mayor in the special election this November. Fletcher, who is a former state assemblyman, changed from a Republican to an independent last year and then became a Democrat.
Former city attorney Mike Aguirre also joined the race Tuesday, announcing on KOGO that he was going to run.
The special election to elect the new mayor is set for November 19th. If no candidate gets more than 50-percent of the votes, then a run-off election will be held between the top two vote-getters within 49 days after the special election.
According to media partner 10News, interim San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria is standing by his decision to reverse a stop work order at a Jack in the Box restaurant in North Park.
This was Gloria's first order of business and something outgoing Mayor Bob Filner tried to stop in the 11th hour.
"I had to undo a cynical ploy by an outgoing mayor," said Gloria.
He said he had no choice but to undo Filner's last move as acting mayor. Filner issued a stop work order on a Jack in the Box in North Park on his final day in office.
It is a project some community members have been fighting because they say the drive-thru lane violates city code.
"Bob Filner approved this project," said Gloria. "The fact that he chose to stop it, hours before he left office, really had nothing to do with standing up for neighborhoods and really had everything to do with creating costly litigation for San Diego taxpayers."
North Park resident Roger Lewis has been part of the group fighting the Jack in the Box drive-thru construction.
He believes Gloria was trying to make a political stand.
"Obviously, there was some political understanding for him to put his neck out there like that and do that," said Lewis.
Both men point to the city charter to back up their position.
Lewis said that according the memo outlining the interim mayor's responsibilities, Gloria did not have the authority to stop the work order.
"He has the ability to administer staff but when it comes to things like vetoes and discretionary things he doesn't have the power to do this," said Lewis.
Gloria said this falls under his scope of responsibility.
"As interim mayor, I'm given the responsibility of carrying out the mayoral duties with the exception of the veto and a handful of other things. I'm here to protect the city and heal the city from the tremendous trauma that Bob Filner put us through," said Gloria.
Gloria said his next order of business is to allow the 10,000 city employees to do their jobs – something he said was not allowed for the last nine months.
Attorney Gloria Allred, who represents the first woman to file a suit or claim against Filner and the city, Irene McCormack Jackson, held a news conference in downtown San Diego Friday.
She was joined by three other women who accused Filner of inappropriate behavior. They all made comments about Filner as he spent his last day in office. Allred had some "parting gifts" from her to the mayor. They included a guide to avoid sexual harassment, a mirror to look at himself as the only one to blame for him having to resign, and a goodbye card to Filner, which said, "Look forward to seeing you again soon at your deposition."
With Alled were great-grandmother Peggy Shannon, a city hall worker, along with licensed vocational nurse Michelle Tyler and injured Marine Katherine Ragazzino.
Shannon, 67, who works part-time at a senior citizen services desk in the City Administration Building, alleged that Filner repeatedly asked her out and one time grabbed her and kissed her on the lips.
Tyler said she met Filner when he was a congressman and leader of the House Veterans Affairs Committee. She said she sought help from Filner on behalf of Ragazzino, who suffered a traumatic brain injury while serving in Iraq and was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Tyler alleged that when she asked Filner to help Ragazzino navigate the Veterans Administration, he seemed willing to help but at a price, notably a personal and sexual relationship with him.
Disgraced San Diego Mayor Bob Filner leaves office Friday, less than nine months into his term. Filner, whose resignation was scheduled to take effect at 5 p.m., is the third mayor of San Diego in recent times to resign amid scandal, following Roger Hedgecock and Dick Murphy.
The 70-year-old former congressman, who initially insisted he wouldn't go, agreed last Friday to resign after nearly 20 women publicly accused him of varying degrees of sexual harassment dating back several years. He is also under investigation for allegedly misusing a city-issued credit card and shaking down developers.
In mediation that resulted in his agreement to step down, Filner asked for one final week in office. He has not said how he has been spending his time. Messages to his staff have not been returned.
City Council President Todd Gloria will succeed Filner on an interim basis. Late Thursday, he announced that the first woman to go public with details of the mayor's conduct, Irene McCormack Jackson, will return to her job as communications director in the mayor's office.
In June, McCormack Jackson transferred to a new city post, and Deputy Chief of Staff Allen Jones resigned. According to city documents, the staff changes occurred during a high-level meeting in which the sexual harassment allegations were discussed.
On July 8, Filner's fiancee, Bronwyn Ingram, announced that she had ended their relationship.
Two days later, three of his onetime supporters -- including former Councilwoman Donna Frye -- demanded his resignation, claiming he was regularly acting in an inappropriate manner toward women.
In addition to McCormack Jackson's lawsuit, the city is dealing with two claims filed by two other alleged Filner victims. Attorney Daniel Gilleon is representing both women, who will be free to file lawsuits if and when the city denies their claims.
One of the women, identified only as Marilyn, is seeking $250,000.
A special election to find Filner's permanent replacement is scheduled for Nov. 19 to choose someone to fill his term. If no one wins more than 50 percent, a runoff vote will be held. City Clerk Elizabeth Maland said the cost for the initial election is estimated to be around $6 million.
One of the candidates, former Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher, corralled endorsements Thursday from the unions that represent the city's white collar workers and firefighters. The Qualcomm executive finished third in the June 2012 mayoral primary vote.
Carl DeMaio, who lost to Filner by a couple points in the November 2012 runoff, said he will announce Tuesday whether he will make another run.
Gloria has also been mentioned as a potential candidate to complete Filner's term, along with colleagues David Alvarez, Marti Emerald and Kevin Faulconer, Supervisor Ron Roberts and former Assemblywoman Lori Saldana, D-San Diego.
Other candidates who have filed intention forms are lawyer Hud Collins, a frequent speaker at City Council meetings; Bruce Coons, head of the preservationist group Save Our Heritage Organization; Paul Michael Dekker, who, according to his website, is director of information technology at the San Diego-based nonprofit Global Energy Network Institute; La Jolla Realtor Harry J. Dirks; Marcus Dunlap; and Michael Kemmer, whose LinkedIn page says he's an IT intern at Sempra Energy.
Also intending to run are Jared Mimms, who says on his LinkedIn page that he has founded or co-founded four companies; accountant Teresa Miucci, psychiatrist Ashok Parameswaran; website owner Tobiah Pettus; Kurt Schwab, who founded an organization for veterans of Afghanistan and Iraq; Mark Schwartz, a Libertarian activist who created a Facebook page for his campaign last month; and David Tasem, who operates a taxicab business.