Monica Montgomery Steppe and Amy Reichert, candidates for District Four Supervisor, participated in a public forum at Cuyamaca College, addressing critical issues like housing, healthcare, and freeway improvements in East County. 

The debate marked their last significant chance to connect with constituents before the November 7th runoff election. 

Montgomery Steppe, a San Diego City Council member, and Reichert, a leader of ReOpen San Diego, seek to represent a diverse constituency of over 675,000 residents.

What is the Role of a County Supervisor?

County supervisors are elected officials who control a multi-billion dollar budget and make decisions affecting your health and safety. 

District Four’s County Supervisor also tracks and addresses infectious disease outbreaks, such as HIV, STDs, and COVID-19. 

Why is There a Special Election?

Former District Four Supervisor Nathan Fletcher was accused of various charges earlier this year. Fletcher formally resigned on May 15, 2023. Fletcher’s term was slated to end in January 2027.

How Do Steppe and Reichert Differ?

During the debate, both candidates shared their backgrounds. They emphasized the importance of community engagement in addressing issues such as homelessness, housing, and mental health problems in the county’s diverse district. Reichert highlighted the need for closer connections between county leaders and their communities, particularly in unincorporated areas.

During the debate, both candidates addressed healthcare access improvement. Montgomery Steppe aims to maintain pandemic-inspired models, hoping to reduce barriers for vulnerable populations by funding community clinics. She also seeks to reform reimbursement structures for mental health services at hospitals.

Reichert proposes a collaboration with existing community clinics, aiding them in state and federal grants. She also advocates for expanding mobile crisis response teams and psychiatric bed availability in the county to enhance mental healthcare services.

What Major Issues Will the County Supervisor Face?

Housing: County Supervisors significantly influence housing developments in unincorporated areas through controlling all zoning regulations. These unincorporated areas face several challenges, such as increased wildfire risks and greater distances from jobs, which result in a longer commute, consequently creating higher greenhouse gas emissions.

Homelessness: San Diego has long faced a significant homelessness crisis. County Supervisors play a critical role in homelessness. Homelessness often is associated with mental illness or addiction.

Transportation: County Supervisors have a significant role in transportation policymaking. This includes influence over public transportation and the expansion of freeways.

Make Your Voice Count

This important special election will be held on Tuesday, November 7. Registered voters in the fourth district should have received their ballot in the mail during the first week of October. 

If you have yet to receive your ballot, find your polling place here.

The fourth district includes the following communitie zip codes:  91941, 91942, 91945, 91950, 91977, 91978, 92019, 92020, 92021, 92101,92102, 92103, 92104, 92105, 92109, 92110, 92111, 92112, 92113, 92114, 92115, 92116, 92117, 92122w,0, 92123, 92134, 92139 and 92182.