San Diego native and basketball legend Bill Walton calls out San Diego officials for the ongoing rise of homeless rates in the city. 

The 69-year-old La Mesa native recently went to social media to address this particular issue that has taken San Diego by storm in recent years. 

A week ago, Walton was at a press conference with the nonprofit organization, Lucky Duck Foundation, where he went as far as to call on Mayor Gloria to resign from his position as a result. 

The NBA legend says he recently went on a bike ride through Balboa Park where he witnessed an increasing number of homeless in the area, stating that he can “no longer say that my hometown of San Diego, is the greatest place in the world.” He also stated that he can “no longer urge my family, friends, tourists, and businesses to come to SD to live, work and play.”

According to reports, Bill Walton sent an email to Mayor Gloria in early August to speak out on this homeless issue with the following statements: 

"I'm begging and pleading for your help. This permanent homeless encampment in our neighborhood is a travesty, with endless trash, urine, and feces, that goes unabated, forever. This makes our public Balboa Park unusable. It is not healthy, safe, or desirable to do so."

A spokeswoman for Mayor Todd Gloria responded to Walton's statement criticizing his comments as a ”tantrum full of self-aggrandizing hyperbole and outright lies.”

The spokeswoman also said that despite what Walton has said through public platforms, the Mayor is taking action to improve this ongoing issue in San Diego. 

“San Diegans are frustrated with the worsening homelessness crisis, and Mayor Gloria shares that frustration,” Gloria spokeswoman Rachel Laing said in a statement. “But unlike Mr. Walton, the mayor is translating that frustration into decisive, sustained action to improve the situation.”


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