SAN DIEGO — San Diego local and NBA legend Bill Walton called out Mayor Todd Gloria Tuesday during a news conference announcing a new initiative on homelessness that aims to publicly grade and call out leaders on their response to homelessness and its myriad of challenges.
“The scoring system will be fact-based,” Drew Moser, executive director of The Lucky Duck Foundation, said during the news conference. “It will be ongoing and it’s designed to emphasize high-impact programs and tangible actions as well as call out inactions or missed opportunities of San Diego County‘s elected leaders and their jurisdictions.”
Walton along with the Lucky Duck Foundation announced the new initiative called Shamrocks & Shipwrecks, intended to hold regional elected leaders accountable on all issues related to homelessness. But it was the rant and blame directed at Gloria that got most of the attention.
“Things are worse now than ever before and our lives are being dictated by an out-of-control and unruly homeless population,” Walton said.
The solution, Walton says, is for Gloria to resign.
“Todd Gloria campaigned for his job on the promise that he would fix the homeless humanitarian and public health crisis in our once great city. Todd Gloria has made it worse,” Walton said.
Gloria’s office issued the following statement. Paraphrasing, it reads in part:
“Today’s ‘news conference’ was simply a tantrum full of self-aggrandizing hyperbole and outright lies. San Diegans are frustrated with the worsening homelessness crisis, and Mayor Gloria shares that frustration. But unlike Mr. Walton, Mayor Gloria is translating that frustration into decisive, sustained action to improve the situation. To say that he has done nothing on homelessness is objectively false.”