Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Morning News Round-Up -- 6.23.09: Ponzi Schemes, Bathroom Art and Tap Dancin' DA's!

2010 is shaping up to be an exciting year for voters. Like Santa Clara, San Jose’s City Council will seek voter approval on a stadium deal (to bring the A’s to San Jose) next year. A’s/Earthquakes owner Lew Wolff wants to hear from baseball officials before hitting the ballot box. Santa Clara County Assessor Larry Stone, supporting baseball and football in his playground, says figuring out which election in 2010 will be tricky “...if one starts going south, it could drag the other one down...” Watch Dog is sure that this is just the spin that the 49ers and A's are trying to get out there...

Tonight Santa Clara City Councilmembers will hear all about why bringing the 49ers to Santa Clara is good, costs/timetable for an election, and fix that pesky City charter to allow the 49ers to select a construction contractor. City Manager Ron Garratt mentioned “good” assumes “a healthier market than exists right now.”

Morgan Hill Councilmember Marby Lee is pissed off when City staff spends money before receiving council approval. Some 42 pre-approval purchases during the past 5 years were presented to Council colleagues Monday. Mayor Steve Tate pointed out the items ultimately received council support and were mostly contract changes anyway.

Santa Clara County Supervisors approved a $4 billion budget last week and are holding their collective breath to see how badly the State money grab affects them. President/Supervisor Liz Kniss offered that the $63 million set aside for State thievery might not be enough…

When you’re sitting on Palo Alto’s Oregon Expressway/Page Mill Road pissed off, you can blame the economy. According to Santa Clara County public affairs director Gwendolyn Mitchell letting you sit in daytime traffic saves the County big bucks.

Santa Clara County wants to hear from you on a critter habitat plan for more than a half-million acres in the county. Plan Manager Ken Schreiber said the plan will address “endangered species over the next 50 years.”

Gary “Mr. Roadshow” Richards relays information on the daily pas de deux taking place at the “nasty cloverleaf” we call 880/101. Reader M.F. sends a big shout out to fellow ballerinas and danseurs.

Ballet on the freeway deserves poetry in the halls. County Poet Laureate Nils Peterson aims to please by unveiling today the first county poem. The Merc’s Sal Pizarro also dishes the annual satirical slugfest (Monday Night Live) will put District Attorney Dolores Carr into her dancing shoes. Rumors abound that Pizarro will grace the stage.

A tale of two unions… The Merc’s Editorial Board calls on San Jose Firefighters to join with other union colleagues, including their public safety brothers and sisters the police, in negotiating raises to save money (and jobs). Echoing the refrain from former Vice Mayor Cindy Chavez, the Merc also says San Jose should have talked to unions early in the game. San Jose Councilmember/San Jose Insider Pierluigi Oliverio calls it “playground politics.”

Los Gatos councilmember Steve Glickman is being accused of wanting to “retire from politics with a s much tumult as possible” by the Los Gatos Observer. Glickman hired signature gatherers for a ballot measure designed to delay a library, something Glickman refers to as “cleaning up some unfinished business.”

Minton’s Lumber & Supply marked its 112 anniversary the same year owners Herb and Mary Jean Eaton decided to close their doors to make way for more housing. Councilmember Mike Kasperzak calls the new proposal (almost) the “epitome” of a walkable neighborhood.

Morgan Hill will consider eminent domain to raze a house and put in
a parking lot. Property owner Dwight Jungkeit doesn’t much care if the house is gone saying the city’s offer was lower than his asking price. At $100,000 it’s likely Jungkeit and Morgan Hill will settle before the expense of eminent domain kicks in.

Los Altos’ own Jin Chung has been charged by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission with fleecing Korean Americans in an $80 million Ponzi scheme with partner Peter Son.

Mountain View police spokesperson Liz Wylie reports Dorothy Blake was caught cashing bad checks in Mountain View. Hitting up branches of Bank of America, Blake’s fakes were each in the amount of $1,831.49.

San Jose police busted 3 members of the Vagos Motorcycle Club (read Hell’s Angels) for gang rape of a 30 year old woman at their “clubhouse.” Police want your help, anyone with information on this case is asked to contact Officers Marchetti or Robb at 408-277-4102

With mourning families in both San Jose and Mountain View, the support Ronnie Gomez Mires received wasn’t enough to prevent his murder. The sad tale of a young man struggling through two worlds ended when Gomez Mires fought over a woman at a high school graduation party in East San Jose.

Bathroom art” said their attorney when Karen Hazelwood and Jeffrey Spinello said their Christian faith was taken advantage of by the Thomas Kinkade Company of Morgan Hill. The courts agreed and Thomas Kinkade has been ordered to cough up $2 million.

Those Bellarmine boys done good. The smooth talking team from San Jose took top honors at the National Speech and Debate tournament. Vijay Sridharan, who took first in policy debate, said it was “…surreal – thousands of people watching…”

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