City of San Diego Retired Employees Association
July 14, 2020
General Meeting Minutes
Meeting held via Zoom
President Dick Wilken reported that all future REA meetings will be held via Zoom until such time as in-person gatherings are permitted by State and local health authorities and members feel comfortable gathering.
He also announced that our print newsletter editor, Janet Wood, will be leaving that post in December after eleven years. If any members are interested in putting the newsletter together they should contact Dick.
Cynthia Queen reported that the SDCERS call center was closed for six weeks at the beginning of the sheltering requirements and that they are working on a remote call center. She also reported that open enrollment went well and that 200 people entered DROP in June.
Dave Twomey gave an update on REA’s image enhancement Campaign. REA contributed $3000 to the San Diego Foundation (funds were matched by the Dr Seuss Foundation) for COVID relief. The funds were used to help the local Y with their summer retreat program for kids. We previously sponsored Carl Luna’s Restoring Respect conference (postponed to October and via teleconferencing). Our next venture will be to sponsor Voice of San Diego’s Morning Report; our logo will be placed in a banner above the text.
The program was Hasan Ikhrati, Ray Major, and Tuere Faaloa of SANDAG who presented on the impacts of COVID on the region’s economy and the future of transportation alternatives. Sales tax revenues are down 25% to 44% and Transient Occupancy Tax revenues are worse. Data compiled by SANDAG show that the county’s Black and Latinx populations live in areas that have both high rates of COVID infection and high unemployment.
That said, SANDAG is using additional data to map mass transit needs. The data shows that most transportation demand is in the western part of the county, especially around Sorrento Valley and Kearny Mesa. Their data also shows that 60% of businesses need employees present and that many employees enjoy working together, so working from home, while still popular, is not a solution. SANDAG’s planning is looking at the long-term – 50 years or more – rather than quick solutions.