Council district and mayoral elections made 2012 the year of campaign promises in City Heights. District 9 Councilwoman Marti Emerald and former Mayor Bob Filner hit the campaign trail together, rallying the community with promises to build a skate park, let kids ride the bus for free and fix persistent infrastructure problems.
Filner’s promise-fulfilling days were ultimately cut short by sexual harassment allegations and, later, his resignation. But Emerald and her staff have proven to be quite the cleanup crew, wrestling chunks of money from the city’s coffers to make good on those campaign promises.
Borrowing a phrase from City Heights advocate Randy Van Vleck, “2013 was the year of funding” for Mid-City residents.
What that money is doing now:
The Skate Park
I first wrote about the community’s dream to build a skate park in 2010. Since, youth involved with community nonprofit Mid-City Community Advocacy Network have organized an impressive coup of newspaper headlines and city agendas. Their advocacy has paid off.
The Capital Improvements Review and Advisory Committee, which advises the mayor on funding major capital projects like parks, recently approved $250,000 for a skate park at Park De La Cruz at 38th and Landis streets. The money comes from fees paid by developers in districts 3, 4 and 9 and is enough to get the project to the development phase, essentially buying it a spot on the city’s capital projects list.