Mayor Reed Could Tie Legacy to Bringing A’s to San Jose

My last column described how luck, spunk and political ambition brought the 49ers to Santa Clara. Now it is time for San Jose to step to the plate and get the Oakland Athletics.

Though this blog will be blunt in its assessment of the current political realities, it is offered to provide some practical solutions, as we are all rooting for Mayor Chuck Reed to get this done.

Let’s start with the positives: A’s owner Lew Wolff wants the team in San Jose and the San Jose establishment wants the A’s in San Jose. So, what is the problem? Politics, pure and simple.

First, Mayor Chuck Reed does not have any clout with Bud Selig. If Selig refused to call San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, the Commissioner would get personal calls from U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein, Senator Barbara Boxer, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and a host of angry and powerful politicians.

But Reed’s relationship with our current Congressional delegation is nonexistent. He needs to pick up the phone and work with our Congressional representatives to get Mr. Selig’s attention. As baseball is governed at the national level, without those officials putting pressure on Selig, he has no incentive to return the mayor’s calls.

Second, the San Francisco Giants are the world champions of baseball. They own the territorial rights to San Jose. There is no reason in the world they will give that up without a fight. In fact, they are the only team in baseball with a “territory.” The property rights were determined when Susan Hammer tried to bring the Giants south in the early 1990s.

Third, there is a myth that the Giants would give these property rights up for a large sum of money. That is a fact that is not based in evidence. Giant President Larry Baer has noted the A’s make money under baseball’s revenue sharing program and he has no intention of giving up their property rights.

Mayor Reed and Mr. Wolff need to play some hardball. There is leverage that can be applied against the Giants, but very few people are aware of it. A strategy needs to be discussed and developed in private between the mayor, Mr. Wolff and their respective advisors. Some elements of negotiation must remain private to be effective.

Next, the polarization of San Jose politics is preventing this issue from moving forward. A divided city cannot get a Major League Baseball team. It’s time for the leaders of San Jose to rise above petty personalities and work together for a higher purpose. The Mayor needs to take the lead, but he can’t do it alone and he needs some help from his political opponents, who also have an interest in the city’s success.

Mayor Reed may not like labor unions and the unions may not like him. But the interests of both and the greater good must be paramount to the prejudice of both sides. The mayor needs to pick up the phone and call a meeting with Ben Field and Neil Struthers.

They won’t agree on all issues, nor can we expect them to like each other. But all three can work together, because they all have an interest in getting the A’s to San Jose.

Winston Churchill, an avowed anti-communist, was once asked about his favorable references to Josef Stalin in the House of Commons, after Germany invaded the Soviet Union.

Churchill replied, “If Hitler invaded hell I would make at least a favourable reference to the devil in the House of Commons.”

The A’s stadium issue unites the two most polarized elements of our local body politics. The divide between Reed and labor is not as great as Churchill and Stalin, and we shouldn’t compare the stakes either.

The mayor should form a task force with his political opponents, such as the South Bay Labor Council, and his allies, such as the Chamber of Commerce, and pull in advocates from both sides. This will take all of the mayor’s skill in negotiation and trust building. He will have to go against the advice of some of his personal political advisors. He will have to accept some people that have not supported him in the past.

In short, Reed will have to rise above petty politics and become a Big City Mayor. Reed has the capacity. I’ve seen it first hand.

In the final analysis, getting the A’s to San Jose would be Reed’s greatest legacy, just as BART to San Jose will eventually be seen as Mayor Ron Gonzalez greatest achievement.

It will take a major league effort to secure this vision, and Reed only has a limited time in office. But just as Santa Clara brought diverse interests together to bring a Super Bowl to Santa Clara, this mayor can bring people together for the San Jose A’s.

Batter up …

Rich Robinson is a political consultant in Silicon Valley.

Rich Robinson is an attorney and political consultant in Silicon Valley. He is currently working on the campaign of Sheriff Laurie Smith.

38 Comments

  1. Unfortunately, Mayor Reed’s legacy will be probably be a vast worsening of the fiscal situation of the city, including bankruptcy. 

    Those of us in Berryessa neighborhoods observed him closely during his years as a city council member when he left no physical legacy at all…no roads, trails, creeks, or parks particularly fixed or upgraded.

    His legacy as mayor will probably be his unwillingness to tackle city finances while a city council member when he could have laid the groundwork for leadership in favor of true reform, not sudden jerks on the reins as mayor that have severely compromised the city’s ability to survive. 

    San Jose is on the list of “sixteen most likely cities to go bankrupt” which may very well be his legacy.

    http://www.golocalprov.com/business/16-cities-that-could-go-bankrupt-ri-has-one/

    • That story is three years old and cites inaccurate info. It’s laughable that they blame the police for having too many supervisors and claim that cost $33,000,000.  The city is in financial trouble because Reed went crazy with RDA spending and building of projects that never had RoI. Also as a council member and mayor he issued soo many bonds that bond debt and RDA debt is the entire budget shortfall.  Do the research. It’s all on the city’s website.

  2. ” This will take all of the mayor’s skill in negotiation and trust building”

    Really Rich? He has none. Zippo. Negotiate is not in his vocabulary and trust is lacking.  He might want the legacy of being the mayor that brought the A’s to San Jose but in reality his legacy will be a mayor that made me feel less safe.  A mayor that mismanaged a city to the point of dilapidation.

    How about he return the land to SARA, get fair value and pay off the RDA debit so the tax payers don’t have to.  In my opinion, no politician should even think of the San Jose A’s until this city is debit free. In other words, maybe in thirty years from now.

    Keep up the good work Chuck. (Finger down throat)

  3. Reed = Public official FAIL. His only legacy will be his arrogant attitude toward people. As for the A’s, they are an after thought. What San Jose leaders need to do is work on San Jose’s problems, not throw more money that we don’t have at anything other than core services right now. I’m actually amazed that you would even try to divert attention from the city’s failures at this point in order to stump for MLB and Reed.

  4. “Winston Churchill, an avowed anti-communist…”

    Yet as a result of his actions, Churchill, in concert with America’s master of deception, condemned tens of millions of free-born Europeans to spend their lives under the communist yoke. Joe Stalin never had two better friends than Churchill and FDR.

    So much for witty quips.

    And by the way, comparing the A’s situation to that of the 49ers doesn’t work—for two reasons.

    1. Competition. In terms of NFL ticket buyers, the 49ers closest competitor is 500 miles away. The 49ers are the only game in town no matter where they are or where you live in the Bay Area. Not so with the A’s. Moving them will absolutely alter MLB ticket buying in the Bay Area. SJ A’s boosters insist the Giants will suffer no harm, hoping to delude us all into believing that south bay baseball fans will continue to attend Giants’ games AND somehow fill the new A’s stadium. Strangely, the City of San Jose, which demonstrated its fear of competition when it blew tens of millions of dollars on a lawsuit to prevent a fairgrounds concert hall from competing head-to-head with its downtown development, now argues that head-to-head competition represents no threat to the bottom line of the SF Giants. This is an argument it can’t win.

    2. Contractual promises. SF’s privately funded ballpark was built by investors who considered the territorial rights to the south bay an integral component of the deal. Their money was put in play and their revenues remain affected by ballpark attendance; neither the Giants nor Major League Baseball has any right to put their investment at risk. It seems incredible to me that a city intent on building a new stadium is so eager to disregard the very concept of exclusivity; after all, in all such facilities exclusivity (to sponsors, media, food and beverage vendors, etc.) is a key factor in generating revenue.

    Hypocrisy, false promises, violating contracts… now that I think of it, this project already has Mayor Reed’s mark on it.

  5. SBLC? Really ? Reed is petty to the bone and no one (Especially Cindy Chavez and SBLC) how Chuck treated her when they were on the City Council together and how the 2006 mayoral campaign went when they ran against each other. SBLC won’t soon forget Reed’s attack on City Employees wages and benefits.

    Reed promised his reforms would, “protect jobs and preserve essential City Services.”  In the short term the number of jobs lost is HUGE and the reduction in City services that the residents of San Jose see and feel while continuing to pay for is REAL.

    Chuck Reed’s legacy is longer police and fire response times, MORE crime and economic failure.

    Support for a stadium will drastically increase when Reed is termed out and then, only if the next Mayor is successful in repairing the damage Reed has done to the CIty.

  6. First off Mayor Reed is an Arrogant, Smug, and Elitist ( for the sake of NOT getting Censored again , Ill leave it at that)
    1) No one in Labor would even dream of “working with Mayor Reed” He simply is not liked , trusted or respected. you would have to e an absolute fool to even try and make a deal with the devil
    2)Reed does NOT negotiate , He imposes . He Bullies where he can and shrugs off everything/everybody that he can’t as if they dont matter
    3) This Mayors Legacy will be that he single handedly destroyed San Jose’s workforce and Decimated Public Safety.
    4) How can you even bring up , bringing the A’s to San Jose , with all the Issues San Jose Currently has going on? Should we not focus on getting this city back on track
    5) Mayor Reed is a proven Liar and Residents are starting to realize that they have been Bamboozled by his Many lies
    6)would love to see a team here in San Jose, But Seriously Doubt it will be the Oakland A’s , And Know it will never happen if Reed is involved

  7. > Mayor Reed Could Tie Legacy to Bringing A’s to San Jose

    Wait.  I must have dozed off.

    Did I miss something?

    I thought Susan Hammer brought the A’s to San Jose a long time ago.

    Didn’t she have a summit meeting with a baseball bigwig and then watch the movie “Fried Green Tomatoes” afterwards because everything was cool?

    We new agers kind of get our news in bits and pieces.

  8. Rich, what do you not get!  Reed has sucked the very soul out of this city.  We will vote down any move of the A’s to this city, at the cost of public safety and general services.

    We need a solid foundation not a baseball team that we are giving away free land and money.  Just go away.  Along with all the clowns who are lined up to run for mayor!

    My godness,  maybe you should follow PO and no longer post stupid blogs.

  9. “A’s owner Lew Wolff wants the team in San Jose and the San Jose establishment wants the A’s in San Jose. So, what is the problem?”

    well for starters: does the electorate want the A’s ?  The population of San Jose will have to vote on the use of public money (perhaps not for the stadium but for certain on infrastructure, land, lease, property tax kickback etc. etc.). 

    Mr. Robinson would benefit from consulting many of the beneficial parties to get this project through an election.  Normally for stadium projects the NO vote gets outspend many times over. 

    Labor would not care less what gets build on this site—even a pyramid would create construction jobs.  At the stadium itself the part time peanut vendors is hardly any jobs to allow someone to support a family.  Oh, Mr. Wolff was against the increased minimum wage (Measure D) last year.

  10. If an A’s stadium is such a great deal, why couldn’t Wolff get a deal done in Fremont?  Fremont isn’t in Santa Clara County, so what held things up there?

    I might be willing to vote for a A’s stadium, but only if the area around the proposed stadium creates an assessment district to pay for the costs of that stadium.  Fat cats listen up:  No pay, no play.

    • Stadium’s are not great “anywhere”.  Except for 880 there was no infrastructure to support a new ballpark in Fremont. 

      Putting it next to Diridon Station, where there is infrastructure makes sense.  One reason the 49ers liked Santa Clara was the transportation infrastructure—including light rail, ACE, and access to 101 on weekends.

      Fremont had note of that. . .

      • 49ers is a bad comparison as NFL does not play that often.  A baseball stadium with 80+ games, and concerts etc, creates a lot of overlap with the use of the Pavilion and the Arena Green.  This will cause a dead blow to the 280/87 interchange (think Christmas at Valley Fair—all summer long).  The infrastructure is just enough to handle the Pavilion but that only has a third of the seats.  The taxpayers will pay for the improved infrastructure needed for the stadium, and that won’t make up for the increased revenues to the City.

        • Certainly there will be some mitigations regarding transportation.  But because you’ll have Cal Train, light rail, and eventually BART at the Diridon station—with much of the fan base for the A’s coming from the east and south and the improved Diridon Area Station Plan implemented, the infrastructure will support 81 home games.

          More importantly,  the same tired traffic argument is used in every new stadium and station.  I have no problem navigating SJ, even during Shark games and our office is located at San Pedro Square. 

          In fact, the traffic that I’ve seen runs smoothly during and after games.  Yes, there is always some delay in every large venue upon egress and entrance—but nothing like we used to have at Candlestick or the Coliseum.

          Also, the economic multiplier for the area is expodential and expands to the region.  The south of market area in SF was a mess before AT&T.  Now the area is hugely upscale.  Importantly, the neighborhood was developed after the Stadium, which limited the fear factor—though there was opposition—before the stadium was built.

          The Arena in San Jose was also opposed by neighbors and the gloom and doom stories were extensive.  We, as a city, have thrived because of that venue.  There are few complaints from neighbors—although I’m sure some have seen and impact.

          But on the whole—Tom McEnery and the people who built that facility deserve great credit for their vision.  And remind me again of the people who opposed it?  Because neither I nor they seem to be able to remember the names.

        • You miss the point: the Arena works because the road infrastructure can just about handle it (apart from the short period of gridlock when the game lets out).  But the stadium is three times the capacity.  Mitigations that were proposed in all seriousness included having more than four people per car to carpool.

          The Arena is also seen around the country as so successful because of the joint effort by neighbors, businesses, and Arena, to make sure the traffic and parking issues were worked out.  Note “joint”—that is key.

          VTA is on record that they do not have money to run more light rail trains needed for the baseball fans.  Campbell is worried that the parking next to their light rail station will be filled up with fans rather than commuters/shoppers.

          Other issue is that if people do not have the baseball schedule in their purse (as many have in San Francisco) they would not want to drive into a traffic jam a second time and rather avoid the downtown area.  This would hurt all venues currently there (ballet, museums, bars, restaurants).

          “We often overlook that economic redevelopment of SOMA (south of Market area) was under way before the new ballpark was planned or constructed. It occurred because so many tech companies and startups wanted office and loft space in the less-expensive SOMA area. That brought new restaurants, retail and housing there, and slowly started shifting the retail center in San Francisco away from Union Square. When the new baseball stadium arrived, it complemented development that was already under way.” (quoted from newballpark.org). 

          Economic multiplier: I only have X dollars to spend.  If I spend it inside Mr Wolff’s new stadium, I cannot spend it at other places in San Jose !!

      • Let’s face it, the people that are “planning” the transportation situation in downtown are the same people that “planned” the access to the airport.  Capturing parking revenue at the airport trumps access.  If access to an A’s stadium it too good, the economic benefit to downtown will be diminished, because people will come to see the game and leave.  You really want access to be a stinker to people come early, stay late and along the way eat and drink something downtown.

        I still want an assessment district.  No pay, no play.

  11. Nice to see all the public employees and union paid political consultants post under all their pseudonyms on this subject.

    Truth be told, it was the voters who elected Reed by a landslide (twice), than elected pension reform council majority and repeatedly endorsed his pension reform measures. Union members who oppose the citizens they work for can just post angry comments, fund nasty campaigns and passive-aggressively slow down response times.

    And it was Cindy who picked the fight after she was denied the position she had spent a decade preparing for. Bit of a sore loser, methinks.

    The South Bay Labor Council would never support a baseball team, even if Reed gave the unions everything they asked for.

    Their members live in Tracy and Los Banos, and don’t vote in San Jose

    Mike Honda is a dumbass and a DUI waiting to happen.

    Zoe Lofgren is too cautious and aloof to every support a local economic development deal like a stadium.

    Our congressional delegation is so far removed from the type of community passion that got Feinstein to threaten to sue the Giants in the 1990s if they moved the team.

    Basically what we have here is a small band of special economic interests opposed to something a majority of San Joseans would approve in a heartbeat. Shame on them for holding the city hostage over special payroll interests.

    • The vitriol in these comments is not what is needed. 

      To question the integrity and character of our congressional delegation in completely out of bounds in my opinion.  Members Lofgren and Honda are among the best public servants we have in the nation. 

      You can disagree with the Mayor on many issues, but the priority must always do what is best for San Jose.  The Southbay Labor Council and their leaders have always championed causes and issues for the benefit of the entire community. 

      Governance is an obligation not to be taken lightly. If we are to move forward we must seize the opportunities where we agree just as passionately as we fight about those issues on which we disagree.

      Political campaigns are the time and place to make our differences clear.  But the Stadium is a project on which most of us can agree.

      Let’s make it happen

    • Try doing some research on case law , “Voters do not and can not have the last word , when an act is Unconstitutional”. 2 weeks ago , In Pacific Grove this same “pension reform model” was ruled “UNCONSTITUTIONAL”. San Jose goes to trial within the next 2 weeks on this same issue . This Mayor and Council were told by City attorneys that this was an unlawful act , but Reed proceeded . So after millions of wasted tax dollars, and a mass exodus of city employees lets see where we end up.

      Its obvious you know nothing of Public Safety but no this , No one is intentionally slowing down responses! They are extremely understaffed and coming from farther out due to closed firehouses and no where near enough Officers. So feel free to sit on your couch all day eating chips and bad mouthing individuals who are willing to do what you cant or wont do.

      • Disgustedinsj is correct on the pension issue.  But that issue will be decided shortly in the courts—then we are back to square one.

        But that doesn’t mean we stop everything else.  Let’s move the ballpark forward.

    • ““Truth be told, it was the voters who elected Reed by a landslide (twice)”“

      That’s because there was no other decent candidate to choose from. There was no decent choice, so the lesser of two evils was voted in.

    • Really? You mean the same voters who voted down the World Champion Giants move to San Jose?

      Your girlfriend Chuck Reed will never get the A’s to San Jose because he is an absolutist jerk who never learned the art of negotiation and compromise.

  12. Material infrastructure is just one of many issues surrounding the A’s stadium issue. I see several other issues facing Mayor Reed in specific and San Jose in general.

    Right now, San Jose is on the national spotlight for its financial issues and it’s despicable and illegal treatment of city employees. Those who are inclined to do some objective analysis of the situation will look at the rhetoric coming from Reed and his allies, Measures V, W and B, and established case law and see that San Jose’s leadership is, in general, not to be trusted, and that, at the same time, neither is the voting public which epitomized the concept of the ‘low-information voter’ in passing Measure B.

    Related to that, is the lack of infrastructure in the public safety arena. I don’t think that SJPD has near enough resources to support events at a ball park alongside of events at HP Pavilion, and I don’t see that situation changing in a meaningful time frame. You see, as far as the police officers are concerned, the damage has been done. I suspect that, were you to ask, a shocking percentage of those who remain are seriously considering leaving the PD for other agencies. Even at the current rate of attrition, there are not enough recruits in the pipeline to offset resignations and retirements and I can’t conceive of how that situation will change, even after Measure B is ruled unlawful. You see, in public safety, trust and dependability are currencies which dominate the culture. Even once Reed and his allies are gone, there still remains the question of how to rebuild trust between [police officers and the council chamber as an institution and between police officers and voters. Again, I cannot conceive of how this might be accomplished.

    Finally, the heads of any major endeavor such as this will have to look at the financial situation in San Jose, particularly in how San Jose manages its Charter services versus all the extraneous stuff. The budget is a matter of public record and examination of it reveals that San Jose is a case study in gross mismanagement.

    When you have a city that lays off police officers while still giving money to non-profits which rightfully should be seeking donations from the private sector, when time and again you see San Jose’s leadership shrink the infrastructure and zoning for commercial enterprise, when time and again you see votes in favor of expanding low-income housing, which creates even more of a net deficit to the city’s finances, when good percentage of the city council, it seems has been embroiled in some kind of scandal or unlawful act (misappropriation of funds: Mayor Reed, stealing of campaign signs: PLO, misuuse of public funds and fraud: Pete Constant, the MACSA pension debacle: Xavier Campos, and Rose Herrera, who is an absolute train wreck any way you slice it) one can see that there is something deeply wrong in the way the city is managed. It’s not just the individuals, though. There is something deeply amiss in the whole political scene in San Jose, where the city’s voters not only disregard the entrenched ineptitude and corruption which pervades the council chambers, but, enthusiastically embraces the corruptocrats and kleptocrats who dominated city leadership.

    Lew Wolff would be very wise to keep these issues in mind. In fact, I would guess that he is entirely too aware of this and realized that, in moving to San Jose, he would be expending a substantial amount of money to move to a city whose financial and leadership problems are every bit as bad as those of Oakland and that San Jose appears to be, by many possible metrics, a city in decline.

  13. If it’s such a great opportunity and investment, why doesn’t the billionaire owner pay for everything?  Market value land, infrastructure upgrades… all of it.  Investment always has risk involved, but it shouldn’t be on taxpayers to mitigate “startup” costs for rich folks and their corporate interests.  The tax money from MLB was roughly equal to marijuana taxes… now that MJ tax is going up to 10%, it’s a better investment than the American Pastime.

    • Cities are now competing for teams and stadiums.  Billionairre owners have the luxury of getting many of their costs paid for because of the increased economic activity for the entire city or region.

      Thus, we can hold to our “market” values and cut off our nose to spite our face.  Any potential loss of revenue to downtown will be more than made up by 81 major league games, potential play-off and, dare I mention, a World Series. 

      The teams, their fans, umpires, league officials, television network employees, right down to the concession vendors are all part of the direct impact.  Note the bars, restaraunts, and local businesses before and after Giant games in SF.  Filled.  But even when the Giants are not playing the city has been revitalized in that area economically.

      We often have these disagreements as to whether a venue or arena pays for itself or the economy.  In 2016 this area will host a Superbowl—experts will argue the amount of economic stimulus from the singe game.  But they argue over how much is made, not how much is lost to a geographical area.

      The economics of the Arena work.  The economics of the AT&T work.  The 49ers stadium is already surpassing expectations.

      Let’s stop talking ourselves out of this and move. . .

      • Market Value… there-in lies the problem. Market value,  When the RDA existed and Reed (as Mayor) was the Chairman and his Council was its board of directors purchased the land at what then had a market value of $240-270million or so with borrowed money. Now that land has a “market value” of pennies compared to the dollar purchase price.

        Lew Wolfe wrote a check for $50k to the City in exchange for the rights to purchase that land at whaterver the “market rate” happens to be and some unknown future date regardless of whether or not he ever gets permission to build the stadium. 

        In other words, SJ might never approve construction of a stadium but Lew Wolfe could purchase the land at well below the CIty’s purchase price and then sell it or develop it himself at a huge profit! 

        Lew Wolfe has it pretty good I’d say, it must be nice to have friends at City Hall who can facilitate welath building like this. 

        Long after Wolfe profits from this deal (with or without the stadium) the taxpayers will still be getting soaked with the debt caused by the City’s initial purchase… That is a problem that is constantly overlooked.

  14. Reed a legacy really?  Is this a joke.  Reed is more worried about a baseball stadium then the victims that have been murdered in San Jose.  If Reed cared what was happening he would admit he made a mistake by laying off police and threatening to take what they have earned/deserved.  Reed has turned one of the best police departments in the county into a training ground for other departments and a proactive to a reactive department.

  15. Rich, for the purposes of transparency and integrity, would you be willing to state what financial stake you have currently in seeing this ballpark built? Thru lobbying or otherwise? And if you have none now, are you in the process of attempting to gain any? Thanks

    • SJFF

      None, zero, zip.  I’m just a San Jose Baseball fan.  I would hope to economically contribute (as a fan) for the stadium at some point down the road.

      And I would not turn down a chance to be part of a team to bring it to San Jose—even if it is a loss leader for my business.

      • Funny Rich. I’m guessing not many here believe you when you say you have no interest in this. You are a paid political consultant. You make a living selling your inside knowledge of the SJ political scene to the highest bidder no matter what party.

        To ask anyone person to believe anything that comes out of your mouth is quite laughable.

        In my eyes, note: not your character, as I do not personally know you, but in my eyes (Perception) you are part of the machine that produces the cesspool of candidates and their failures in this city.

      • Thanks for responding and clearing that up. At one point I was very much in favor of the A’s coming to San Jose, when I was excited about San Jose and where it was going. I don’t agree that reed has ever acted in the positive manner you claim he has, but you are entitled to your opinion. In my opinion, anything this mayor does that doesn’t directly relate to fixing public safety, is time spent poorly. Also I have to take a little issue with your comparison of San Jose to SF. It seems like the South Bay has a longstanding inferiority complex to sf that manifests itself from time to time. If only we had a ballpark, we would be like SF-etc. the truth is that as long as San Jose in run by small minded incompetents, it will never be a world class city. But, I know that you are well aware of that.

      • And I would not turn down a chance to be part of a team to bring it to San Jose—even if it is a loss leader for my business.

        And a “loss leader” for the residents of San Jose.  Of course, you don’t live in San Jose do you?

  16. The damage Mayor Reed has caused with the city workers is irreparable. As a leader, he has completely and permanently lost their trust. He has burned any bridges and goodwill he had. I do hope the A’s come to San Jose someday. It will take someone aside from Mayor Reed to make it happen though. Unfortunately, none of the candidates who are running to take his place have the desire or ability to coalesce the support of diverse groups to make this happen either. In fact, all the candidates who have so far put in for Mayor are at least, if not more polarizing than Mayor Reed. If somebody like Cortese or Ash Kalra were Mayor, it may happen.

  17. Just to make a record, here is a link that shows how San Jose rates in the employee-to-resident list:

    http://washingtonexaminer.com/exography-19-u.s.-cities-have-proportionately-bigger-workforces-than-bankrupted-detroit/article/2533338

    And there is something strange going on here this summer with city employees which was never seen before.  On the short street where I live, this summer we have had four visits from the dog police (with no problem from barking, packing, threatening, or biting at all), eight visits from the parking police patrolling to give tickets to people whose cars overlap the sidewalk just a few inches, and visits by code enforcement police getting involved with neighbors feebly squabbling about hedges & fences, not to mention the recycling police paying early morning visits to examine the contents of recycling bins before pickup.  In short, city workers don’t have enough legitimate work to do. 

    We’re thinking of putting up some folding chairs and renting them to tourists who want to watch silly civil servants coming and going on our little street, lending a little drama to our well-kept pleasant neighborhood.

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