SAN DIEGO - Kristin Gaspar became San Diego County's newest supervisor Monday, replacing Dave Roberts in a district that represents part of North County.
The former Encinitas mayor unseated Roberts in a tight race that saw the incumbent cling to a slim lead on election night. The margin dwindled in subsequent counting, however, and once Gaspar took the lead she held it for good -- winning by nearly 1,300 votes out of about 229,000 cast.
Roberts had been the only Democrat on the five-member Board of Supervisors, which oversees county government.
He was ousted after one term by Gaspar, a Republican who was succeeded as Encinitas mayor by Catherine Blakespear.
The new supervisor said addressing homelessness would be a top priority.
"To combat the rise of homelessness throughout the region, we have to build on a network of individuals committed to resolving this issue through collaboration, through advocacy and through the careful allocation and realignment of the resources," Gaspar said. "We have to define this goal before we ever enter the water. And we have to keep pushing, we have to keep swimming because we have to meet that goal."
She said she has discussed a partnership with San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer on solving the problem of homelessness. She conceded that it would be "a major challenge" to resolve the issue.
Longtime Supervisors Greg Cox and Dianne Jacobs were also sworn in at a ceremony at the County Administration Center. Both have been in office for two decades, but are embarking on their final four years in office because they're now subject to a relatively new term limits law.