Who Is Linda Lukacs? She’s Running in District 2 Against Jen Campbell – Part 1

by on July 27, 2022 · 16 comments

in Election, Ocean Beach

By Judi Curry

There is one thing about the San Diego City Council that some people do not realize.  The seats on the Council are bi-partisan.  Whether the “owner” of that seat is a Democrat or Republican should not make any difference. They are elected to do the best for the community.

Suffice it to say that it is well known that the incumbent is a registered Democrat – and, in my opinion – a “do nothing” Democrat. Yes, I supported her and yes, I even voted for her.  When she came out ahead in the most recent primary election I knew I would have to do some investigation into her opponent, because I knew that I would not cast my vote for her again.

I met with several people that suggested that I do an interview with Dr. Lukacs, a dentist that has an interesting background. She was raised in a very small city – Chagrin Falls – in Ohio.  She moved to Point Loma over 30 years ago (those who said that she is not a member of District 2 are wrong).

And on Monday, she walked to my house from hers and sat down in my living-room for an interview — which I’ve turned into a two part series.

She was a nurse, is a dentist, a professor, and a very impressive candidate.  Oh yeah – she’s a registered Republican.  Let me say it again – political affiliation does not matter in City Council elections!

The following questions and answers are a mixture of my comments with those from Lukacs’ website:

1)    How do we solve the homeless crisis?  (Might as well start big!)

This can only be solved by addressing the root problem. The most overwhelmingly problem is mental illness and drug addiction. We must provide shelter and services that help these people.  We should be trying to help individuals to regain their health and get back on their feet, and become productive members of society again.  We must provide mental health counseling and addiction treatment.  We must prepare them for working in society, similar to programs that have been successful in other States.  Rhode Island was one example, and I mentioned the success rate of Job Corps Centers where all of their needs are met, including food, clothes, medical services and training in a variety of jobs.

I asked her how she would handle those people that refuse service.

She said that our first responders and care providers must be supported in these efforts. When it is necessary, there must be judicious and ethical enforcement of the law.

Sometimes homeless individuals must be detained by the law.  Sometimes this is the only option because they are a threat to themselves and often to others.  There must be trained individuals to work with this population.

2)    Crime is out of control.  What will you do about it?

She began her career as a police dispatcher.  Interestingly enough her mother was a police officer and as she continued her career became a jail administrator and consultant.  Linda has a great deal of respect for the enforcement agencies.  The police force work tirelessly to ensure our safety and quality of life.  She says that we need more resources, staffing and support to do their job.  She said that she will fight hard to ensure that that they are sufficiently trained, well compensated, and backed by the community.  She would like to see San Diego bring back their community substations and neighborhood surveillance.

3)  I asked Linda if she supported the 30 foot height limit.

She answered that growth and development must enhance a community, not detract from it.  Each neighborhood has their own personality, and that must not be changed.  We must ensure that the infrastructure can support growth and further increase in population density.  Presently, she does not feel that we have the requisite logistics and infrastructure in place.

4)   I asked her opinion of Short Term Vacation Rentals.

She said that she certainly appreciates and supports property owner’s rights, but there must be realistic rules, regulations and enforcement in place to govern these STVR’s.  She has 4 STVR’s on her block!  Two of them are quiet and the other two are horrible. There are parties all night; loud music into the wee hours, etc.  In spite of the owners being informed of these problems, it continues.  There must be regulations in place, and when they are violated, there must be consequences.  There should be fines and revocation of the right to operate the STVRs.  A new ordinance was just recently passed regarding this, and it will be interesting to see if it is reinforced and by whom.

5)   What do you think about the vendors and the new vendor ordinance?

Currently she is opposed to sidewalk vendors.

In reality they are hurting our local business owners that have invested in a storefront business.  Business owners are struggling to make ends meet; to make a living. They pay taxes and licenses, where as the vendor pays almost nothing for a license and whether they pay taxes on merchandise sold is questionable.  The street vendors frequently block access to our beaches and parks and they compete with the established shops and businesses.

The new law prohibiting vendors from such places as Balboa Park may work and is already in place,  but it is up to the Coastal Commission to state whether there should be any changes along the beach areas. If there are to be changes, it will be sent back to the City Council for revision.  And once again, enforcement will be a great measure to determine success.

6)   Do you support the Midway development plans?

Yes, she does support the plans but not until the infrastructure is in place. Currently there are no practical plans that address the expected increase in traffic in the area as well as the dwindling water supply, the overtaxed electrical grid, and the crumbling roadways.  There must be critical impact reports and only then should development begin.

Hasty decisions and actions, as we have seen all too often, lead to confusion, wasteful spending and duplication of efforts.

7)   Do you support SB9 and 10

(These are Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs).  Linda feels that this may be one way to keep families together in San Diego while at the same time addressing our critical housing shortage.  However, she feels that at this time both are going too far.  We need to preserve the essence and character of the neighborhoods.

Building an ADU in proportion to lot size while observing all setbacks and with appropriate infrastructure and parking are fundamental elements for success.  Removing residential zoning, getting rid of setbacks and disregarding quality of life issues is unreasonable. And if these units are bring build for family purposes, that rule should be enforced.

8)   Do you support the People’s Ordinance (The 100-year law allowing free trash pick-up to single family houses)?

She appreciates the intent of this ordinance, but in its present form is opposed to it.

If there is no alternative funding sources or creative ways to establish free trash pickup then we must pay a fair and equitable share.  There is question now about whether homeowners already pay for trash pickup by virtue of their property taxes, as either a line item or “hidden”  in the fee structure.  This must be investigated and clarified.

( And…while we were talking the City Council voted to place this ordinance on the November ballot.  I am hopeful that the “investigation” will be completed way before the voters cast their ballot.)

9)   How will you be different from our current council member?

“It is my personal goal to be the best councilmember that our District has ever had.”

The role and responsibilities of a council member are incredibly important.  The community entrusts this person to be their voice, their link to City Hall and government, someone who is committed to serving all areas of the District.  I will be present; I will listen; I will communicate openly; frequently and transparently.  This in my home, my community, my cherished neighbors and friends.  I will take action for the betterment of District 2.  I will weigh the complaints and accolades of the community and act on them.  I will not delegate severe problems to my staff; I will work on them myself. I am here for the constituents.

As you can see, Linda and I spent a great deal of time together. I had never met her; I had my reservations about supporting her. In fact, I had almost decided that I would not vote for District 2 representation because of her unknown status and I did not want to reelect the incumbent.

However, keeping in mind that this office is not a political party one; keeping in mind that Linda has claimed she has already knocked on over 4000 doors introducing herself to others and answering their questions, I wonder if she is a person to support.

Linda welcomes all comments from the neighbors.  You can go to her website and read her positions on many different problems facing our district.  On the website is a place for comments – scroll down – and I found out that she – Linda – answers all of them herself.

So, dear reader, stay tuned for Part 2, on Lukacs’ thoughts on other-than-District 2 issues.

 

 

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

judith curry July 27, 2022 at 12:55 pm

For some reason I had difficulty accessing her website – http://www.lindalukacs.com. She welcomes your comments to her email address at linda@lukacs.com if you have trouble with the website.

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Jean-Yves Caron July 28, 2022 at 7:53 am

That’a a sensitive way to choose a candidate at this level of government… Knowledge of the local problems and honesty are a must… Great help for your fellow citizens…

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Richard July 28, 2022 at 8:28 am

Interesting article about Linda. In your next interview ask her who she voted for president, Trump or Biden? Knowing that republicans party line vote, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was the insurrection president. Remember Judy wolves in sheep clothing. Remember Jen Campbell?

Respectfully

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judi July 28, 2022 at 11:37 am

Unfortunately one votes for the person they think is the best at the time. I voted for Biden; I probably would not vote for him again. But I will ask her.

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kh July 28, 2022 at 2:16 pm

A fair question, but I’ll add our city council does not influence border walls, or military conflicts, or abortion, or gun control, or basically any of the things happening at the executive level that dominate our news cycle.

Here we have to decide who is our best candidate to hear and represent our community’s needs at the city level for the next 4 years. Things like funding for parks and infrastructure, influencing development, housing policy, and law enforcement, and weighing the interests of residents vs. developers and other special interest groups.

Has Jen Campbell proven herself to be that person? Or do we give Linda Lukacs the opportunity instead?

Getting hung up on national party politics is what Jen Campbell wants, it’s what she campaigned on vs. Lori Zapf, and will do again this time around. And any legislation that Lukcas wants to push at the council level will require at 5 of the 8 democrats, or 4 plus the mayor, to support it.

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frankf July 28, 2022 at 8:29 am

I too have voted across party lines in local San Diego elections because I had a personal or professional relationship with the candidate. I knew them, I knew their values, I knew their family, and I knew they had my community’s best interests in mind. I also knew that they were not full of bull hockey as are so many politicians.

I trust Judi’s bull hockey detector.

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Frank Paiano July 28, 2022 at 8:40 am

You can act as if the United States still had a viable two-party system with both parties dedicated to the success of all citizens. However, that does not make it true. Personally, I will never ever vote for another Republican. If you are a Republican, you are tacitly or explicitly supporting violent rhetoric, authoritarianism, attacks on the democratic voting process, white supremacy, and control over women’s bodies, to name just a few of the outrageous crimes that would horrify Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Eisenhauer, Reagan, and even Nixon. You are dead wrong, Judi Curry. *Every* elected position in government is political.

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kh July 28, 2022 at 2:20 pm

Jen Campbell thanks you for your vote.

4 more years of representing special interests and Todd Gloria’s club, and to hell with the residents and all those volunteers striving so hard to draw overdue attention our community’s needs.

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Frank Paiano July 28, 2022 at 5:42 pm

Dear kh,

No reason to be snarky. But then again, it is easy to be rude when you don’t give your full true name, isn’t it. I am voting for Jen Campbell because she stood up to the anti-science, anti-maskers wingnuts who put others in harm’s way to satisfy their sick right-wing agenda.

As far as your response to Richard that it is, “a fair question,” I disagree vehemently. It is not a question. It is a statement of fact. If you vote Republican, whether for the local dog catcher or the President, you are supporting a political party that is hellbent on overturning elections that they disagree with, rolling back civil rights, vilifying minorities and those of alternative sexual orientations, and in short, would be very happy to turn our country into a Vladimir Putin-, Viktor Orban-style authoritarian dictatorship, a democracy in name only. Indeed, Viktor Orban has been invited to speak at a Republican event here in the United States. Unbelievable!

Look, you have already made up your mind. That’s fine. But don’t try to rationalize it by saying that local elections don’t matter. *Every* election matters.

Respectfully submitted,

Frank Paiano
Ocean Beach

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Frank Gormlie July 28, 2022 at 11:46 am

Of course, it’s a myth that city council seats aren’t partisan. It’s the theory, yes, but seldom does it show up. It’s usually the candidate with the most party support that ultimately wins a seat.

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Stu July 28, 2022 at 3:08 pm

Judi, Thank you for that interview I am so saddened by the fact the Jen even made it through the primaries. I couldn’t think of a worse candidate for our district. I realize that the council should be non partisan and I think for the most part it is although we all have politics and that shows in our decision making. I am hesitant to say whether Linda will be better than Jen but I am willing to give her shot and it will be the first time that I can remember that I will have voted for some one who considers themself a Republican. Unfortunately I will be voting against Jen rather than for the candidate that gets my vote.

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Frank Gormlie July 28, 2022 at 3:41 pm

You heard it first here, dear reader: a possible “voter revolt at the coast.”

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frankf July 29, 2022 at 9:10 am

Folks, I know it’s hard not to be cynical about your neighbor’s voting habits, but that’s also why we find ourselves in the pickle we’re in right now. You’re wrong, I’m right. F-you. What happened to respecting what your neighbor believes in?

Voting has a lot of nuance in it. I suspect a lot of people vote AGAINST a candidate or proposition that they see as a bad choice, as much as people vote FOR a candidate or issue. Look how man people crossed over to the other side in the last national election to vote against a candidate!

Sliming someone because you think they voted for Trump or Biden because of their party affiliation is really short sighted. Rarely does a voter buy into everything their candidate or party supports, I know I don’t. So it comes down to voting for the best candidate on the ballot, not necessarily the perfect candidate.

At least on local non-partisan elections please leave your political orthodoxy behind and vote for the candidate who you believe will represent your values, your desires, your vision of what your neighborhood should be, no matter if. there is an R, a D, or an I after their name.

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Frank Gormlie July 29, 2022 at 9:46 am

Sure, but it is extremely short-sighted to vote for someone who still backs Trump, ala Darrel Issa; so it is important to know where a local Republican stands on key national issues when a good chunk of that party still believes the insurrection to overturn our democracy was simply expressions of “free speech.”

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kh July 29, 2022 at 12:08 pm

What is a good chunk? In my personal experience, most do not, and were embarrassed and alarmed by what happened on Jan 6th. Even the politicians schmoozing for a Trump endorsement don’t believe in his B.S.

Rest assured Trump won’t be making endorsements in our local city council race.

I think it’s a mistake to assume anything about an individual based on your perception of what their “group” says on cable news or social media. These two platforms magnify the most outrageous people out there and are not representative of most. Yes, some do eat it up hook line and sinker. I have friends and family members that believe everything they’re told from their bubble. Don’t be one of them.

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