Monday, June 29, 2009

Morning News Round-Up – 6.29.09: Council raises meet economic reality...

San Jose’s “huge sucking sound” comes from resident dollars landing outside San Jose according to Councilmember Sam Liccardo. To fix it San Jose had a dream of North San Jose becoming a second downtown – those dreams are now turning into visions of a McCarthy Ranch redux.

Gilroy Councilmember Craig Gartman has asked colleagues to ditch their $64,000 medical benefits in exchange for a council/mayoral raise. The part-time Councilmembers will consider their 106% raise while they ask police and fire unions to take a 15% paycut. Colleague Dion Bracco doubts the lost medical benefits will be gone for more than a year calling the move whimsical, self-serving tricky politics.

Also on the frontlines of salary wars...

San Jose Downtown Association President Scott Knies and Councilmember Nora Campos engaged in a salary throwdown. Campos wants to know if Knies really really got a 19% city pay raise. Knies salary is listed on city payrolls at $134,399 and in a report from the non-profit at $68,916. $134k + $69k = $203,000, could it be…

Our Sister Blog, Watch Dog San Mateo shares this cross over story… East Palo Alto’s Housing Director Wilbert Lee called the ongoing vandalism at the Courtyard at Bay Road unforeseen. Wheelchair bound Arnold Hart complains he can’t get in, carpets used as toilets and a crowbar modified elevator are a few of the problems giving San Jose’s Community Housing a headache.

Interim Santa Clara County Executive Gary Graves is sucking it up. although disappointed by the appointment of Dr. Jeffrey Smith. Graves says “sitting in the executive chair is a whole different ballgame.” Smith said negotiations on take home pay are in the works, the last exec took home $292,000.

Gilroy’s tale of fence wars made the big time… Mercury News curmudgeon Scott Herhold heard from home invasion survivor when Chris Cote launched email to Herhold with his side of fence wars. Like Herhold, Watch Dog is sympathetic with Cote but thinks there has to be a better way than razor wire.

(Former) County Counsel/US Deputy Assistant District Attorney General Ann Ravel attended her own “wake” according to the Merc’s Sal Pizarro. Pizarro had a busy week including Falcons, interesting hands, and Teddy Bear Clinics. Los Lupenos is looking for alumni, email Barbara Perez Diaz

The Merc’s Internal Affairs entertains with various mini-soaps…

  • Where was “No-Show Ngyuen” during San Jose City Council budget discussions? IA thinks the absences were a sign of avoiding contentious labor votes. IA sends props to council colleague Judy Chirco for donning a hat and joining discussions in spite of chemotherapy. San Jose Insider’s joined in via Rants and Raves
  • Supervisorial candidate Teresa Alvarado shot a “snarky” email to IA with a huffy retort to the implication that she and opponent Rosemary Kamei the same constituency.
  • The Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office anxiously awaits a report from (retired) Superior Court Judge/(former) Prosecutor William F. Martin about a “trove of some 3,300 tapes” of sexual assault medical exams. The DA’s hope they got their stories straight for the judge…
Los Gatos Planning Commissioners delayed a decision on creekside storage asking Extra Space to come back in August with a bigger parking lot and a shorter building. Extra Space’s Scott Wyckoff offered there would be “no significant” environmental impact and the 3 story storage facility would be “gorgeous.” No doubt a big parking lot will help with the aesthetics.

The Merc’s Mr. Roadshow (aka, Gary Richards) got the dish from the California Highway Patrol that 200,000 hands free scofflaws have been busted.

Sad news from Santa Teresa County Park, a woman was found dead on the trail by another hiker. No word if County budget woes (and a lack of park oversight) had anything to do with her death.

Today marks 2 weeks since San Jose Revealed ditched blogging for pneumonia. Could it be Revealed has ditched blogging or just ditched the moniker? Give up on all that good will, nah… Mission City Lantern suggests Revealed has headed for fashion world or maybe a Sanford like liaison.

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