Axios San Diego

Newsletter branding image

Hey, it's Wednesday! Let's all give someone a compliment today.

  • Today's weather: Coast — Mostly cloudy; highs in the mid-60s. Inland — Clearing skies; highs in the upper 60s.

Today's newsletter is 876 words — a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: Gloria reverses proposed budget cuts

Photo illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios. Photo: Daniel Knighton/Getty Images

Mayor Todd Gloria announced Tuesday he will reverse cuts to housing and homelessness programs proposed in his budget last month, based on the city's slightly improved financial situation.

Why it matters: His decision ends weeks of dialogue with leaders from the San Diego Housing Commission, who argued the proposed cuts would undo progress on the homelessness crisis.

Driving the news: The mayor's revised budget, released each May based on the latest city financial data, increased general spending by $13 million compared to last month's $5.65 billion proposal.

  • Nearly $2 million is from better-than-expected tax collections, but the rest came from slowing down city spending.

Friction point: Gloria had proposed tapping $15 million in Housing Commission reserves to pay for homelessness programs provided by the agency, but officials said the most they could provide was $8 million.

  • Also, state officials agreed to speed up sending over $7 million — the city's share from the latest round of a homelessness prevention program — to make up the difference.

State of play: The new budget partially or fully restores funding to Housing Commission programs focused on eviction prevention, homeless services outreach, housing instability prevention and the Neil Good Day shelter downtown.

County supervisor Monica Montgomery Steppe and others also criticized Gloria's initial proposal for eliminating equity-focused programs.

  • Gloria restored two projects from the climate equity fund — which aims to mitigate climate impacts in certain communities — but is still diverting $7.4 million from that fund to city services.

Yes, but: He's still eliminating a cannabis equity program before it really got started.

The bottom line: Increased funding let the mayor settle some public disputes over the upcoming budget year, but he still balanced spending with one-time sources that leaves the city's structural budget deficit unaddressed.

  • Charles Modica, independent budget analyst for the city, told City News Service that steeper long-term cuts may be necessary next year if proposed tax increases aren't approved.

Share this story

2. ⚽️ San Diego FC is building momentum

Illustration: Gabriella Turrisi/Axios

One year after San Diego FC was announced as an MLS expansion club, excitement is building as its roster begins to take shape.

Why it matters: The team, which will play at Snapdragon Stadium, is looking for a marquee player — and coach — ahead of its 2025 debut.

Catch up quick: Last May, the MLS added San Diego as the league's 30th team in a record $500 million deal.

Driving the news: The club is in "advanced talks" with highly decorated Spanish defender Sergio Ramos, who has helped teams win the 2010 World Cup, back-to-back Euros, and multiple Champions League and La Liga titles, The Athletic reported Monday.

Flashback: When the team unveiled its name and brand last year, CEO Tom Penn told ESPN they're interested in "foundational players that are gonna be with us for the formative years of a club."

State of play: San Diego stayed local in signing its first player, 17-year-old goalkeeper Duran Ferree, then added Danish veterans Jeppe Tverskov and Marcus Ingvartsen.

🗣️ You tell us: Reply to this email with questions you have for the team's CEO ahead of its inaugural season.

Zoom out

3. The Lineup: News worthy of your time

Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios

🍽️ A new California law bans surcharges at restaurants starting in July, but San Diego diners can expect higher menu prices. (Union-Tribune)

🔌 San Diego's City Council approved a deal to expand its network of EV charging stations by hundreds of parking lots for beaches, parks and other public facilities across the city. (Fox5)

👴🏻 California lawmakers are considering a bill that would allow family members to visit nursing homes during declared emergencies following a report about the "devastating" impact of closures during the pandemic. (KPBS)

4. 🧘 Beach yoga at risk

Yoga with a view in Pacific Beach. Photo: Kate Murphy/Axios

Yoga classes at parks and beaches around San Diego are at risk of being shut down.

Why it matters: Yoga instructors have been forced to cancel free community classes as the city enforces an updated policy that requires permits for businesses and certain group gatherings.

Catch up quick: In February, the city revised its sidewalk vending ordinance, making it easier to punish rogue vendors, cracking down on people who used free-speech claims to avoid prohibitions and clarifying that exercise classes are not protected from enforcement.

Between the lines: City code prohibits groups of four or more people engaged in commercial recreational activities — including yoga, fitness classes and dog training — without a permit.

  • Those permits are also only available for certain areas, including Mission Bay and Balboa Park. It excludes Sunset Cliffs, where groups have been practicing yoga for years.

What's next: Some of the affected yoga instructors are raising money for a civil rights lawyer and petitioning the city to change the ordinance.

Tell a friend

Sponsored event listings

Future events

📆 Start planning your days ahead.

Award Winning Salsa Class at Thai Time North Park on May 21:

Ticket includes 1 complimentary beverage, happy hour pricing for all attendees and two different salsas you will make in class and take home. $40.

Hosting an event? Email [email protected].

5. 🐈 Chart to go: Pet-friendly rentals

A table showing the percentage of pet-friendly rentals in the largest U.S. cities in 2023. Dallas tops the list with 79%.
Data: Zillow/BARK; Chart: Axios Visuals

More than half of San Diego's rental listings on Zillow are pet friendly, which is just above the national average (55%) but lags behind other major cities.

Why it matters: Nationwide, about 60% of renters have at least one pet, and twice as many renters filter for pet-friendly listings than for any other amenity, according to Zillow.

Fun fact: San Diego's dog-friendly beaches, restaurants, trails and accommodations earned the city a spot in USA Today's top 10 dog-friendly vacation destinations.

Our picks:

🎶 Andy was blown away by Waxahatchee at the Observatory last night.

📖 Kate is excited to talk about The Women at book club tonight.

This newsletter was edited by Ross Terrell and copy edited by James Gilzow.