Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Morning News Round-Up -- 7.21.09: A Garbage Saga in Cupertino?

Cupertino Public Works Director Ralph Qualls asked his City Council to hold off on a deciding whether to stick with garbage collectors Los Altos Garbage. Perhaps nervous about Qualls, LAGCo sent a letter directly to Councilmembers, bypassing staff, with their new proposal. This story would seem to be of limited interest to most folks, except... Los Altos Garbage's parent company (Norcal) is prominently featured in Watch Dog San Mateo's Garbage Saga. But even more intriguing, the same company was also involved in Gonzales/Garbage Gate in San Jose.

Speaking of Mayor's being roughed up... Gilroy Mayor Al Pinheiro faces a recall effort from conservative activist Mark Zappa and the Police Officers Association. Zappa said recalling the Mayor would “...send a strong message to the other starry eyed members of council who the real boss is...” Watch Dog wonders if San Jose's Bobby Lopez is getting any ideas...

The Merc’s Editorial Board joins the growing chorus of those unhappy with finances in local school districts. The Editorial Board goes so far as to say Luther Burbank School District, with one school and 575 students, shouldn’t be a District. East Side Union’s questionable spending is called out and a lack of documentation questioned.

Those Federal bucks stimulating the economy have found their way to San Jose. Early beneficiaries are roads and trails. (Not this place, which a recent emailer suggested was a good place for stimulus dollars to be spent.)

San Jose Police have (again) opted not to release 911 tapes from the murder/suicide by Jian Ming Liang. In a letter to the Mercury News, Chief Rob Davis (with City Attorney Rick Doyle) said “...it is not the department’s intent to deny every request for 911 information...” Though, (apparently) it is the result…

Joining the band of cities pissed at the Guvernator, Cupertino is part of a lawsuit from the League of California Cities fighting the jurisdictional dollar theft.

The unique gang murder case underway in Morgan Hill has a new Judge and new charges for Christian Jimenez. The trial restarts Wednesday after the new Judge has had time to catch up.

Hank Nijmeh’s family owns San Jose’s iconic Falafel’s Drive-In. He’s lived in Silicon Valley for over 40 years, graduated from Campbell’s Del Mar High School, and is now being deported by U.S. immigration to Israel. His crime appears to be mental illness and smoking pot.

For decades the fact she flew military planes during WWII was a State secret. San Jose’s Marcella Tucker was one of 25,000 American women trained to fly military aircraft. Soon she’ll receive the Congressional Gold Medal recognizing her efforts.

Local restaurateur, Tom Muller of Lou’s Village fame, shared memories of Walter Cronkite’s visit with the Merc’s Sal Pizarro. "And that's the way it is..."

The Merc’s Scott Herhold tossed his curmudgeonly attitude overboard for his first Bike Party with 2,500 cycling revelers.

And to the local blogosphere...

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