San Diego Leaders Debate Prop D

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    Less than a week before voters will cast their ballots, supporters and opponents of Proposition D debated the pros and cons of the half cent sales tax.

    Mayor Jerry Sanders has been pushing for the passage of the ballot measure, saying pension reforms won't be enough to cover the city of San Diego's $73 million budget deficit.

    "So, Prop D is the only way to keep the services that are so vital to this city, police and fire and recreation and libraries," Sanders said at NBCSanDiego's downtown studio Wednesday.

    District 6 council member Donna Frye reinforced Sanders statement about the need for the taxpayer money to help balance the city budget.

    Proposition D San Diego's Financial Future

    [DGO] Proposition D San Diego's Financial Future
    City officials debate over the most intensely fought measure before city voters.

    "The only people that are going to be punished if Prop D does not pass, it's going to be the working families, it's going to be the people that rely on city services,"Frye said.

    But Prop D opponent and District 5 Councilmember Carl DeMaio argued that the money raised may actually end up going to the bloated pensions of retired city workers.

    "Our city government is asking for a blank check with Prop D, no guarantees of reform, no guarantees it'll go to vital city services," DeMaio said. 

    San Diego County Taxpayers Association President Lani Lutar echoed DeMaio's concerns about the half cent sales tax.

    She also believes taxpayers shouldn't have to foot the bill for poor decisions by city leadership over past pension plans.

    "Working families who are struggling to make ends meet are getting hit from every direction," Lutar said.

    On Tuesday, voters will have the final say about Prop D.

    Wednesday's debate will re-air twice this weekend on NBC 7/39 - Saturday at 6:30 p.m. and Sunday at 9:30 a.m.

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