Mayor Kevin Faulconer and the San Diego Police Officers Association today endorsed Lorie Zapf's City Council reelection campaign.
The backing came one day after 15 candidates qualified to run for four council offices in the June 3 primary vote.
Zapf is vacating District 6 to run in Faulconer's old District 2 seat against federal prosecutor Sarah Boot, Pacific Beach community activist Jim Morrison and Mark Schwartz, a marketer of organic fertilizers.
She has the "experience, know-how and integrity" to get things done, Faulconer said at a news conference. Her "strong track record" from her first term includes support for fiscal reform, neighborhoods and the San Diego Police Department, he said of Zapf.
SDPOA President Brian Marvel said he appreciates Zapf's support for a five-year plan to rebuild the SDPD following several years of budget cuts during the recession.
"Simply put, Lorie Zapf is a public safety advocate that our city needs," Marvel said.
He noted Boot's profession and said she made a good presentation to the POA, but Zapf's current involvement in SDPD issues put her over the top.
"We need stuff to be done now," Marvel told City News Service. "We can't put off the recruitment and retention issues until next year."
The department has been losing eight to 10 officers a month for several years to retirement or neighboring agencies that offer better take-home pay. Even recruits attracted to the SDPD have been snatched away by the Sheriff's Department, according to police officials.
Zapf is one of three City Council members up for reelection. The others are ex-mayoral candidate David Alvarez and Myrtle Cole, a former law enforcement officer who has also been endorsed by the SDPOA.
When the City Council map was redrawn a couple of years ago, her residence fell into Faulconer's beach and bay district. While she has continued to serve District 6, which covers Clairemont and Mira Mesa, she said she preferred to keep her family in their home of 17 years rather than move before the election.
The SDPOA has not yet decided on endorsements in District 6 or 8, which is represented by Alvarez, Marvel said.—City News Service