Election 2022: Chula Vista Mayor’s Race

October 10, 2022

What does the Mayor of Chula Vista do?

Chula Vista is a constitution metropolis with a council supervisor system. Beneath this method, town council selects a metropolis supervisor to supervise the day-to-day operations.

The mayor of Chula Vista largely serves as one other member of town council — however with a number of added perks. The mayor represents town at official occasions and in regional our bodies like SANDAG. Town’s mayor additionally has extra of a say in what objects are on the weekly metropolis council agenda.

What points is town of Chula Vista going through?

Residents of Chula Vista have been ready many years for the Bayfront redevelopment and a four-year college. Town is lastly on the cusp of finishing the billion-dollar Bayfront improvement. Town just lately introduced that San Diego State College’s growth of its movie faculty will probably be in Chula Vista.

The following mayor will assist information Chula Vista by way of these large initiatives.

However the metropolis additionally faces challenges. Chula Vista has a structural price range deficit that has compelled a reduce in providers lately, significantly to the parks and library departments.

The three large points KPBS is specializing in are town’s dealing with of the homeless inhabitants, Chula Vista’s latest controversies surrounding its surveillance program, and the way forward for town’s hashish market.


The Chula Vista Metropolis Council voted unanimously to close down Harborside Park due to security issues over a rising homeless encampment close to an elementary faculty. Advocates criticized the choice for ignoring the rising encampment and treating it as a felony concern as soon as the encampment bought too large to handle. Town’s resolution to shut the camp compelled dozens of unhoused individuals out of the realm with out addressing their wants. Town is at the moment constructing its first homeless shelter, which might open in early 2023.


Chula Vista has additionally come below hearth for its surveillance program. In 2020, reporters revealed that the police division had been sharing information from its Automated License Plate Reader Program since 2018. Earlier this yr, KPBS reported that specialists on the Pentagon recognized the Chinese language provider of Chula Vista’s police drones as a possible menace to nationwide safety. Nonetheless, town’s police chief and elected officers have praised their surveillance instruments as a key cause in crime discount.

In response to criticism, town council requested a process power to guage current insurance policies and suggest new ones. The duty power’s suggestions will probably be introduced to town council earlier than the top of this yr.


Chula Vista’s hashish enterprise ordinance in 2018 is one other thorny concern for metropolis officers. The vetting course of for candidates to run storefront dispensaries was so cumbersome that firms didn’t truly obtain permits till 2020. Three firms that had been denied permits are actually suing town. One among them gained, forcing town to overview the appliance. Town’s dealing with of the hashish allowing course of exhibits how tough it’s for some companies to function in Chula Vista.

Who’re the candidates?

Ammar Campa-Najjar, a candidate to represent the 50th District in the House of Representatives, is pictured in this undated photo.

Courtesy of Ammar Campa-Najjar



Ammar Campa-Najjar, a candidate to characterize the fiftieth District within the Home of Representatives, is pictured on this undated photograph.

Ammar Campa-Najjar

  • Political Guide
  • Registered Democrat

Ammar Campa-Najjar made a political identify for himself in San Diego County working two unsuccessful congressional campaigns within the East County. He beforehand labored within the U.S. Labor Division through the Obama administration and on the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Campa-Najjar spent the 2018 and 2020 election cycles portraying himself as a average Democrat who was “born and raised within the East County.”
Throughout the mayoral marketing campaign, Campa-Najjar has been extra vocal of his South Bay roots. He usually mentions graduating from Eastlake Excessive College and Southwestern Faculty.

As mayor, Campa-Najjar stated he would prioritize public security and enterprise improvement. He would use his place on the SANDAG board to eradicate the toll on State Route-125 and assist the growth of the trolley into Tijuana.

Campa-Najjar on the problems


Campa-Najjar has criticized the present mayor and metropolis council for not being proactive when coping with homelessness.

“There’s a lot to be desired in the best way they’re approaching this concern,” he stated.

Campa-Najjar blamed town’s elected officers for permitting a homeless encampment in Harborside Park to develop into an even bigger downside that finally compelled Chula Vista to close down your complete park. As mayor, he wish to work with nonprofits, state and federal businesses to handle the problem.


Campa-Najjar helps extra civilian oversight of the police division’s surveillance packages. He additionally helps suggestions to rent a chief privateness officer and create a everlasting privateness advisory board.

“We can’t let the truth that we’re coping with new applied sciences be an excuse for why we let issues fall by way of the cracks,” he stated.

Campa-Najjar believes the Chula Vista Police Division is working in “good religion,” and wish to educate the general public on town’s use of recent applied sciences.


Campa-Najjar believes there needs to be a social fairness part to Chula Vista’s hashish ordinance. Particularly, he desires “communities of coloration which have been unfairly impacted by drug legal guidelines to learn from legalization.”

Beneath town’s present ordinance, firms, whose staff have felony convictions, are barred from getting a license. Campa-Najjar wish to revise that coverage

John McCann, Chula Vista

Chula Vista mayoral candidate John McCann is pictured on this undated promotional photograph.

John McCann

  • Metropolis Councilmember
  • Registered Republican

As mayor, McCann stated he wish to improve the variety of law enforcement officials in Chula Vista and streamline the enterprise allowing course of to draw extra funding into town. McCann stated he would additionally prefer to replace getting old infrastructure within the western a part of Chula Vista. Like Campa-Najjar, McCann additionally desires to eliminate the toll on State Route 125 and develop the trolley into Tijuana.
John McCann has been a Chula Vista Metropolis Councilman for 16 years. If elected, he could be town’s most skilled elected official. He’s an Iraq Struggle veteran and owns two separate property administration companies – one in Coronado and one in Chula Vista. Every is valued at greater than $1 million.

McCann on the problems


McCann says that the choice to shut Harborside Park was carried out within the identify of public security.

“This was a difficulty about felony exercise and public security,” he stated. “It was not a homeless concern.”

McCann stated the pandemic and “smooth on crime” insurance policies from Sacramento are chargeable for the homeless encampment. He stated town’s homeless shelter, which is about to open early 2023, will assist deal with homelessness.

He additionally stated the police division’s Homeless Outreach Staff is already doing an incredible job addressing homelessness in Chula Vista.


McCann helps the police division’s use of surveillance applied sciences.

“The Chula Vista Police Division has been an innovator in ensuring they use know-how and checks and balances to maintain our metropolis protected,” he stated.

McCann believes that there are already a number of checks and balances to make sure individuals’s privateness is protected. He stated the present police chief has carried out, “an distinctive job.”

McCann stated he would overview proposals to rent a chief privateness officer and create a everlasting privateness advisory board earlier than committing his assist to these concepts.


Looking back, McCann stated he would have most popular town had employed one other firm to deal with the hashish enterprise license software course of. He stated town went by way of some rising pains through the preliminary rollout.

“To start with, there have been undoubtedly plenty of enhancements we might have made,” he stated.

McCann doesn’t assist increasing or modifying the present ordinance, at the least not within the close to future.

He declined to touch upon any of the continued lawsuits.

The place do they stand on points that matter to you?

Nonetheless do not know who you are voting for?

Scroll right down to play an interactive quiz that may aid you discover out the place native candidates stand on points that matter to you. Reply 4 a number of alternative questions masking matters from funding regulation enforcement to lease funds.

Word: Candidate John McCann didn’t reply to KPBS’ questionnaire.

Quiz: Which candidate do you agree with probably the most?

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Quiz: The place do native candidates stand on points that matter to you?

Atención ⚠

🗳️ Las boletas de votación por correo comienzan a enviarse a todos los votantes activos registrados en California a partir del 8 de octubre. El último día para registrarse para votar es el 24 de octubre. (Si los votantes no cumplen con esta fecha límite, aún pueden registrarse y votar en persona en cualquier centro del votación). El 8 de noviembre es el día de las elecciones en todo el estado, pero muchos centros de votación están abiertos antes del día de las elecciones. Los centros de votación y los lugares de entrega cierran a las 8 p. m. el día de las elecciones.

Encuentre más guías como esta en el Voter Hub de KPBS.

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