In a short political campaign, such as the current mayoral race, voters don't have time to check preposterous statements or to get into critical but complex issues.
Example: Candidate Nathan Fletcher has been caught in a video telling voters that the city's pension obligations will recede over time. This is simply not true.
"Nathan Fletcher either lied, was misinformed by the city unions backing him, or Fletcher actually thinks the city's pension paymetns are decreasing with time, and all the new-found money can be reinvested in neighborhood infrastructure," says activist Katheryn Rhodes.
Candidate Mike Aguirre also points out that Fletcher's statement is not true; pension costs are rising every year.
Former mayor Jerry Sanders has an ad promoting Kevin Faulconer. Sanders claims that under his administration, a billion dollars was saved on pensions, and that can go back into the neighborhoods.
"Nothing could be further from the truth," says Aguirre. Sanders claimed he was balancing budgets, but what he was doing was ignoring maintenance, infrastructure, and critical services such as fire. The city still has a structural deficit, says Aguirre.
In the past three years, San Diego has spent more on pensions than it has on firefighting. The city's $8 billion unfunded pension deficit costs San Diegans almost $4500 per household per year, says Aguirre.
All this adds up to something that no candidate has come out and said: San Diegans cannot have improved infrastructure — roads, sewers, water, etc. — and, at the same time, giveaway programs such as the convention-center expansion and subsidized Chargers stadium. With the huge pension deficit, the money isn't there.