Milpitas Mayor Working Double Time?

The winter of discontent continues unabated for the Milpitas Monarch, Jose Esteves, who complained at last week’s City Council meeting of feeling harassed by Public Records Act requests. (Message to Mayor Esteves: If you already feel harassed, stop reading here.) It would be one thing if the PRA requests were coming from an angry citizen, but almost half of the 66 requests—which ask for phone records, emails, video surveillance, and dates and times the mayor used a key card to enter City Hall—came from Councilmember Debbie Giordano. This caused Councilmember Althea Polanski to request a full report detailing each of the PRA requests. Thanks for doing our job for us, Ms. Polanksi. It turns out the mayor, whom critics accuse of holding an unauthorized wedding on City Hall property earlier this year, may be up to more than just connubial biz. According to people who are familiar with some of the requests, Esteves has been spending a lot of time at City Hall while also on the clock for his day job as an IT specialist with the Santa Clara County Superior Court. Fly has learned that on Aug. 16 and 18 the mayor’s key cards were swiped at City Hall no fewer than 23 times—and at times long before a 7pm City Council meeting on the 16th and a Finance Subcommittee meeting on the 18th. Carl Shulholf, a spokesman for the court, says he can’t release information on whether or not Esteves worked on either of those days because it is a personnel issue. Meanwhile, Milpitas’ city attorney, Michael Ogaz, is saying certain records in the requests are public but not disclosable—whatever that means. But taking a quick look at the mayor’s calendar on the city of Milpitas website, there is no mention of him stopping by City Hall on either of the days in question.

Note: Mayor Esteves responded to Fly’s questions after deadline by calling back during a break from work Wednesday. He denies ever staying on the clock for his job with the Santa Clara County Superior Court while visiting City Hall. On the days in question, Aug. 16 and 18, Esteves says he is not sure why his key card was used at City Hall during hours he would normally be at work. He says he will check his calendar and get back to us. Esteves also denies that a wedding took place at City Hall under his supervision, adding: “How can you have a wedding in thirty minutes?”

The Fly is a weekly column written by San Jose Inside staff that provides a behind-the-scenes look at local politics.

4 Comments

  1. Jose’s not the only one. You guys should look at Evan Low’s calendars. Last year when he was mayor of Campbell he routinely spent all day on his political agenda while getting a full time state paycheck. He supposedly worked for Paul Fong, but it was very clear that he was allowed to do all his personal political duties and was releived from having to do anything of substance for his government entitlement check.

    Now look at Daisy Chu getting paid by the county to go to events with Kansen, but of course, representing George Shirokawa. Not to mention Chu’s soninlaw being on the payroll for Dave Cortese.

    Xavier campos supposedly worked for Shirokawa too, while preparing for and running for city council. No real job requirements then either.

    It’s just another way of making the taxpayers fund political ambitions.

  2. Don’t forget Santa Clara Mayor Jamie Matthews who works as a Code Enforcement Mgr. for the City of San Jose.  Should check his time working in City Hall, but if their was ever an audit; his office calendar would be changed just as it was for a State Audit for Waste Tires