Monday, July 13, 2009

Morning News Round-Up – 7.13.09: A Wet Sword of Damocles...

San Jose Assemblymember Joe Coto managed to land himself in the Chronicle’s editorial pages. This time Coto is seeking to take away California’s “district of choice” program from parents hoping to send their kids to targeted schools.

San Jose’s Luther Burbank School District found itself the subject of a Civil Grand Jury investigation. School Board President Antonio Perez gets the special love that only a Grand Jury can give with accusations of creating a hostile workplace, questionable business practices, breaking state law, and financial mismanagement. Of the schools high rating by the California Department of Education, Perez said “academic excellence – the word makes me sick.”

The Merc’s Sal Pizarro bid a fond farewell to A.P. Stump’s with a crowd big enough to have revelers suggesting Stump’s should have had weekly closing parties.

San Jose’s pension fund scandal is the gift that keeps on giving. Calling it “heads I win, tails you lose” Councilmember Sam Liccardo questions the wisdom of $2.9 million in bonus benefits when the fund is underfunded for future retirees

Club Wet in San Jose was ordered stop the dance after their 5th stabbing in 6 months. According to the club’s consultant, Dustin DeRollo, the latest stabbing was “unpreventable.” Which begs the question, were the other 4 stabbings avoidable? For the answer, check out the spin on Wet’s website where you’ll learn that stabbings are a part of a “premiere entertainment experience.”

It’s Summer and teens are hitting the roadways with creative stories designed to flummox parents. The Merc’s Mr. Roadshow (aka Gary Richards) clears up the fiction, much to the dismay of teens around the Bay.

San Jose’s Mineta International Airport opens a few gates in its sparkly new terminal while trying to confuse passengers with “counterintuitive” gates according to spokesperson David Vossbrink.

A San Jose teen was stabbed to death in a (possibly) gang related attack at a Sunnyvale brawl. Police hope you’ll share info at 408-730-7120.

Former San Jose Planning Commissioner Bhupindar “Bob” Dhillon dismissed accusations of financial mismanagement and shoddy workmanship at the growing Sikh temple. Dhillon is confident his 25 year old construction management student will be successful with the $40 million (first) project calling naysayers lying nitpickers.

San Jose's Redevelopment Agency managed to land $24 million from the State to straighten the unfriendly Julian Street. Transportation consultant Gary Black said undoing the curvy street would help make San Jose’s downtown nice. Mayor Chuck Reed is hopeful the State’s check isn’t an IOU.

The sound of the other shoe dropping would be State threats to remove San Jose Redevelopment money targeted for expansion of the Convention Center. Calling it a “totally sword-of-Damocles situation” the Agency’s Bill Ekern waits on pins and needles for word of State theft.

The Merc’s on-again/off-again Government Watch is back up with the following news…
  • San Jose’s Mexican Heritage Plaza Steering Committee hopes a noon time meeting will deliver creative ideas on “sustainable” business models and cost reduction.
  • Sunnyvale’s City Council goes after a homeland security grant for bomb sniffing pooches.
  • The 49ers proposed stadium is on tap at Santa Clara’s City Council.
  • Yummy cafeteria food fills the plate for the Los Gatos Union School District.
  • A scathing Civil Grand Jury report has the Luther Burbank (1 school) School District considering responses to “Board of Trustees of Luther Burbank School District (LBSD) Gets an ‘F’.” Also up for discussion, extending the interim Superintend while the search continues.

Mission City Lantern let loose with an attack on the Merc’s Barbara Marshman and the Chronicle and a (possible) accusation of Santa Clara City Councilmember Jamie McLeod as a former Gavin Newsom girlfriend (really?).

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