Eric Johnson

Eric Johnson

Posts by Eric Johnson

Larry Pegram: New Financial Revelations

Evangelical activist Larry Pegram wants to fix the city’s money problems, but he has had a few fiscal troubles of his own.

Eighteen months after leading the local battle against gay marriage—and shortly after an aborted plan to move to Tracy and run for U.S. Congress—Larry Pegram promised that his campaign for San Jose City Council would be about fixing the city’s pressing money troubles, not social issues. Since that time, Pegram has emphasized his commitment to balanced budgets and cited his own credentials as a professional financial planner.

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Canadian Sharks Attack US

San Jose hockey fans must deal with a conundrum this afternoon, as the United States and Canada battle for Olympic gold. Do we root for the US team, or root for our home team?

Four San Jose Sharks—Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau, Dany Heatley and Dan Boyle—make up the backbone of Team Canada. They have been key to Canada’s success, working together in what TV announcer Kenny Albert has called “the San Jose connection.” Only one Shark—Joe Pavelski—is playing for Team USA.

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Pelosi and Friends in San Jose

Speaker Nancy Pelosi, introduced by Zoe Lofgren as “the most powerful woman in the world,” was warmly received at Wednesday’s Rotary lunch meeting. Photograph by Peter Carter.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi covered a lot of territory in a brief visit to the San Jose Rotary’s weekly lunch meeting today—from the death of Sen. Edward Kennedy to the empowerment of young women (the subject of her book, “Know Your Power,” which she signed at the event). But she clearly wanted the audience to take home one message: “We must have health care reform.”

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City Council Passes Budget

Jennifer Maguire, San Jose’s budget director, has worked for the city for for 18 years, and says she has never seen anything this bad. And she is not hopeful that things will improve fast. “Most economists are predicting a slow recovery,” she said ruefully.

Maguire addressed the City Council as it prepared to vote on the 2009-2010 budget. Within the hour, the Council would unanimously approve Mayor Chuck Reed’s Budget Message, as well as the Operating and Capital Budgets. But leading up to the unanimous decision, which closed an $84.2 million shortfall, Maguire was one of many local leaders who adopted a solemn tone while making dire predictions.

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Tony West’s Triumphant Return

Assistant U.S. Attorney General Tony West spoke Wednesday at a Rotary Club lunch meeting.

Introducing Tony West today at the Rotary Club of San Jose’s weekly meeting, Larry Stone reeled off a list of his old friend’s accomplishments: graduate of Harvard, where he was editor of the Harvard Political Review; law degree from Stanford, where he was editor of the Stanford Law Review; former special assistant to Attorney General Janet Reno; former member of the San Jose Planning Commission; and “two-time unsuccessful candidate for local public office.”

When Stone, the longtime County Tax Assessor, mentioned that last item, a couple of groans were heard among the friendly crowd of Rotarians. “Well, Tony,” Stone quipped, “it all worked out for the best.”

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