Attacking Mayor Kevin Faulconer as focused on a 2018 run for governor and ignoring San Diego needs, former Councilman Ed Harris on Thursday formally announced his bid for mayor.
“The incumbent thinks media events are equivalent to accomplishments,” said the 10th potential candidate for mayor, joining former Assemblywoman Lori Saldaña as a top contender. “He’s more concerned with running for higher office than he is in running the city of San Diego.”
Two days after taking out papers to run for mayor, Harris said homelessness and crime have “increased dramatically” and basic infrastructure is in disrepair, “and the mayor’s only solution is a budget shell game.”
Faulconer is focused on subsidizing a football stadium and preparing to run for governor, he said. The mayor has raised at least $1 million, according to 2015 records.
In a news release, the lifeguard sergeant said that during his service in the Marine Corps he learned to focus on teamwork and self-sacrifice.
“I carried those values with me when I started my own small business and to my service as a San Diego Lifeguard, and I will bring that same back-to-basics approach to being mayor of our city,” said the Democrat.
Harris said Faulconer failed to address understaffing of public safety personnel.
“We have delayed response to 9-1-1 calls, and we continue to lose trained police officers to other departments,” he said. “The city has over 1,000 vacant positions. Cutbacks in Fleet Services have resulted in much of the city vehicle fleet being out of commission.”
As mayor, Harris said, he will enforce the 30-foot height limit along the coastline and address problems created by permanent short-term rentals in residential neighborhoods.
“I’m proud to have support from key members of Save Our Neighborhoods, the citizens’ group involved with the short-term rentals issue,” he said. “I also helped create a partnership with Toyota that has provided 34 new vehicles for our Lifeguard Department that is saving city taxpayers over $4 million.”
Harris became a San Diego lifeguard in 1989 and is now responsible for the La Jolla Rocks area, including the Cove and Children’s Pool, and a dive team supervisor answering high-profile emergency calls.
Harris also is a spokesman for the San Diego Lifeguard Association advocating for enhanced public safety and coastal preservation.
He has been the lifeguard representative for the Marine Protection Area Committee, and established the annual “Fill the Fin” campaign in 2011 to raise money for swim programs in poor neighborhoods.
He has also been a volunteer soccer coach for the Peninsula YMCA and the Point Loma Soccer Association. He labels himself an avid gardener, fisherman, free-diver and body surfer.
Harris also called himself a strong advocate for clean water and quality of life issues and boasts a home with solar power, a rainwater catchment system, permeable pavers and artificial turf.
Harris and his wife, Kate, have two children who attend a neighborhood middle school.
>> Subscribe to Times of San Diego’s free daily email newsletter! Click hereFollow Us: