Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Morning News Round-Up -- 5.12.09

The San Jose Police Department still remembers the controversy when officers shot a Vietnamese woman with a vegetable peeler (albeit a gigantic and sharp vegetable peeler) in 2003. The weekend shooting of Daniel Pham, described as mentally ill by family members, will ensure the San Jose Police Department another controversy to deal with. Under investigation by San Jose Police Department's homicide and internal affairs units, the District Attorneys office is keeping a close eye.

(Our friends at Watch Dog San Mateo would like us also to consider this police versus mentally ill man incident yesterday that did not end in death...)

Not to make jokes...but...

Campbell’s Psycho Donut Shop was the scene of a donut protest with “stigma free” and psycho donuts at war. Head psycho Jordan Zweigoron told protestors that his donuts had no deeper meeting, sometimes a donut is just a donut. Rumors Psycho Donuts is hosting Campbell’s upcoming Mental Health workshop are untrue.

The Merc’s Editorial Board is calling on San Jose City employees to give up raises to save jobs. Mayor Chuck Reed says the City Manager, City Attorney, City Clerk, and City Auditor are taking pay cuts. Let’s see, $282,000 minus 3.75%...

San Jose Councilmember Pierluigi Oliverio is hitting the budget circuit and using his bully pulpit at San Jose Inside to inform/inflame the masses. Watch Dog can see it now, angry citizens storming City Hall demanding the return of the Mounted Unit and disbanding the Mariachi Festival with Oliverio hot in pursuit.

El Rancho San Benito, the City that never was. Developers had hoped to turn 5,700 acres of cattle ranch into a city of 20,000 at the Southern edge of Santa Clara County. The economy and housing crisis caused Arizona based DMB Associates to pull the plug. Sierra Club’s Melissa Hippard said she was pleased, that it was a “leapfrog development” with the worst kind of sprawl. Sprawl in Southern Santa Clara County, say it ain't so... (Gilroy...)

A Palo Alto Jane Doe was 17 when she was attacked, beaten, dragged face down on the sidewalk and raped last year. Doe survived the attack and is now trying to survive the trial of Todd Burpee without looking her attacker in the face. Deputy District Attorney James Leonard plans to convict on physical evidence.

A grumpy Rod Diridon admitted he’s blamed a handful of folks from the toney towns on the Peninsula for trying to block his $40 billion High Speed Rail baby. Diridon urged NIMBY’s to listen for facts not made up stories about the HSR/Berlin Wall. There is one Palo Alto NIMBY who is actually calling for the HSR Authority to give up the management of this project to CalTrain...

While we are on CalTrain, budget cuts may force weekend service to be eliminated and will certainly cause fares to go up...

Palo Alto Congresswoman Anna Eshoo didn’t include her hometown among her requests for federal stimulus broadband dollars but is encouraging the them to apply for money intended for “unserved or underserved communities.” Eshoo also encouraged PA Councilmembers to take a step back on their vision of the Great Wall of Rail.

From Palo Alto to Sunnyvale, those federal stimulus dollars are calling. Sunnyvale developer Peter Pau, Sand Hill Property, even has eyes on the pot of gold. He has his hand out saying “this is the kind of stimulus you can put your hands on.” Pau needs $450 million in loans, with banks and local partners unwilling to cough it up he’s hoping the feds step in. Mark Watch Dog's words, if federal stimulus dollars go to funding a mall in Silicon Valley, it won't be pretty...

Gilroy City Staff will see Pink Slip Friday unless the unions make some big concessions. The City Council didn’t like the previous union plan of furloughs and work without pay but union representative Tina Acree will be returning with the same proposal. Mayor Al Pinheiro says it’s not a “dictatorship” but it does look like each side is stuck in their corner.

Morgan Hill teachers will meet at the Cellars to hear the terms of a proposed contract with the Morgan Hill Unified School District. Negotiations started last September, included picketing teachers, so it’s nice to hear they’ll raise a glass of the local juice as the acrimony fades.

State Senator Joe Simitian will be hosting the first web Town Hall. Simitian, whose district runs from San Carlos to Capitola, hopes the technology will allow more folks to participate. Send him email questions in advance or poke him during the Town Hall.

Dennis Rockstroh, the Action Line guy for the Merc, is hot on the trail of the garbage man/tree killer. San Jose Urban Forest Manager Ralph Mize and City Arborist Dorothy Abeyta will give the tree abuser what for. Also in Action Line, thieves are posing as PG&E reps, legitimate PG&E employees will have identification.

Another one bites the dust… The Los Gatos Weekender was unable to find enough advertisers for the Merc to keep it going. The West Valley Resident also got the axe from Silicon Valley Community Newspapers. The demise of the Weekender got more coverage from Metro/San Jose Inside’s Fly who serves up a rumor that the Sunnyvale Sun and Cupertino Courier will eat it this week.

Twenty years ago Marvin Maple, the story goes, kidnapped his grandchildren from his daughter. Landing in San Jose, the family lived quietly until an unsolved crime TV show pointed at them. Maple appears in a Tennessee court today.

Yep, those were the furious fingers of San Jose Revealed we heard yesterday. Revealed let loose with analogies to Lord of the Rings and Star Wars with Chuck Reed playing Darth Vader to Nora Campos’ Luke Skywalker.

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