Supervisor Jim Desmond
At our last board meeting, I proposed legislation for the county to take a stand against the income-based fixed-rate electricity proposal. Unfortunately, my colleagues voted against this and are in favor of charging people based on their income.
The proposed fixed-rate bill fundamentally operates on an income-based charging model, where the more one earns, the higher the flat-rate electricity charges, even if you have solar. I’m completely against this proposal for several reasons, one of the biggest is that the utility companies will have access to your tax return, and your energy bill will be based on income and not usage.
Here's a breakdown of what this could mean for San Diegans:
• Households earning between $28,000 to $69,000 would face a monthly charge of $34.
• Those with incomes ranging from $69,000 to $180,000 would see a monthly charge of $73.
• Households earning above $180,000 would encounter a monthly charge of $128.
On a separate issue, but also important we passed crucial action regarding homelessness.
The escalating crisis of homelessness has reached a critical point, not just within San Diego County but across the entire State of California. This multifaceted issue has led to over 10,000 people living on the streets, often in conditions that hinder their ability to make sound decisions for their well-being.
Take a drive through downtown, and you will see the stark reality of individuals caught in the grip of substance abuse, causing harm to both themselves and the community at large. The responsibility for this situation lies, in part, with the State of California and its lenient stance on crime and homelessness.
Thankfully, enough people have spoken out, and it’s time for a change. The state has responded to public outcry by providing a tool our county is poised to implement. This policy allows law enforcement officers to place individuals who are gravely disabled due to severe substance use disorder on an involuntary hold. At its best, this policy will force people to get the help they need.
Although the initiation of this program prompted some debate regarding the timing, there is a collective eagerness to see it commence as swiftly as possible.
The careful execution of this initiative is crucial, as we must avoid overwhelming our emergency rooms. Striking the right balance is paramount, but I am committed to launching this program promptly, envisioning a positive transformation that will enhance the quality of life in San Diego.