Mar 28, 2013 by James P. Reber Politics, Business, Culture Comments (1)
The Umberto Ambrozino Field House is part of a larger plan to rebuild San Jose’s Watson Park.
Today I write about an extraordinary man and truly remarkable project being created in his honor. Umberto Abronzino, a talented soccer player and barber, was born in 1920 in Sessa Aurunca, Italy. More than 30 years later, he found his way to San Jose and created a soccer movement.
Mar 27, 2013 by Josh Koehn Politics, Business, Culture Comments (48)
This video of a “smart mob” designed to discourage smoking tobacco, put on by nonprofit Working Partnership USA, was funded with county taxpayer dollars.
Flash mobs are so 2011. But apparently, that’s how the county decided to spend leftover money at the end of last year, which, if memory serves, was 2012. But, wait, these weren’t just any flash mobs—they were “smart mobs.” At its last meeting of 2012, the county Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a $40,000 increase in its partnership with nonprofit Working Partnerships USA. The additional funds were retroactively approved to continue an anti-smoking initiative through March 18, 2013.
Mar 26, 2013 by Jennifer Wadsworth Politics, Business, Culture Comments (1)
Councilmember Sam Liccardo has asked staff to consider the feasibility of renting out vacant space at City Hall.
Parts of City Hall, left a bit empty after layoffs and the Redevelopment Agency’s closure, may soon be open to anyone looking to lease a slice of the swanky 18-story downtown centerpiece. Proceeds from the market-rate rents will go right to the city’s general fund, according to a memo going before the Rules and Open Government Committee on Wednesday. Other items include the Pete Constant-Johnny Khamis memo asking the city to investigate how public funds were used to fund a county sales tax measure carried out by organized labor.
Mar 26, 2013 by Jennifer Wadsworth Politics, Business Comments (0)
The annual housing report going before the City Council recommends building more affordable housing, and fast. (Photo by SandTDesign, via Flickr)
The dissolution of redevelopment agencies and state budget cuts to municipal housing funds have made it tougher for San Jose to meet its goal of building more affordable homes in recent years, according to an annual housing report going before the City Council on Tuesday. Other items on the council agenda include an incentives package for Samsung, a commendation for a police officer who never clocks off and a North San Jose cemetery that is running out of space.
Mar 25, 2013 by Jennifer Wadsworth Politics, Business, Culture Comments (6)
County Executive Jeff Smith has offered part of his office’s budget and future funds to help the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Silicon Valley set up a small business center.
The Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday will consider granting a fair chunk of change to a nonprofit trying to set itself up as a small business support center. This comes on the heels of greater scrutiny regarding public funds going to entities that are not required to disclose their financial dealings. Also on Tuesday’s agenda, the Board of Supervisors will consider supporting a change to the state Constitution that would lower the percentage of votes needed to raise local taxes.
Mar 25, 2013 by Pierluigi Oliverio Politics, Business Comments (8)
J.P. Morgan the man is no longer here, but the global financial services firm he founded has a firm grip on its Letter of Credit with the city of San Jose.
Last week, I participated as the alternate for Mayor Chuck Reed on the oversight board for the Successor Agency to the Redevelopment Agency (SARA). The primary focus of the meeting concerned the approval of a one-year extension to the existing Letter of Credit (LOC) with JP Morgan bank. This extension had already been passed by the City Council, but it was still up to the SARA Oversight Board to approve the extension as well.
Mar 22, 2013 by Jennifer Wadsworth Politics, Business Comments (8)
A new report from State Controller John Chiang says the city of San Jose improperly transferred land intended for a baseball stadium.
When Gov. Jerry Brown ordered in 2011 the dissolution of California’s 400-plus redevelopment agencies (RDAs), San Jose was forced to halt the kind of subsidized development that built much of downtown over the past two decades. Now the city might have to work out a new deal on RDA land it has been holding for a potential baseball stadium in the hope that the Oakland A’s can relocate to San Jose. But as the legal fight between the state and municipalities continues, other ideas for tax-increment financing (TIF) districts are emerging.
Mar 22, 2013 by Tom McEnery Politics, Business, People, Culture Comments (3)
Tom McEnery speaking to the San Jose Rotary Club. (Photo by Bob Beaulieu, San Jose Rotary.)
We all stand on the shoulders of others in the building of a city or a nation. Nowhere is that more true of our valley than in one strip of San Jose called San Pedro Square. A boy named Luis Peralta traveled north from Tubac, in Old Mexico, fully 1,000 miles, and he settled in this area; the DeAnza Party followed. We move from Peralta to Fallon, Masson, Giannini, Disney, Hewlett and Packard, and on to Jobs in a few short steps and some 200 years of San Jose history.
Mar 21, 2013 by Silicon Valley Newsroom Politics, Business Comments (9)
This screenshot of a 2012 fundraising video for the Santa Clara Family Health Foundation showcases its role in providing health insurance to children. The foundation did not advise donors in the video that a large chunk of its budget would be used for a political campaign.
Two members of the San Jose City Council are calling for an investigation into whether city funds were illegally used in local campaigns. Councilmembers Pete Constant and Johnny Khamis are asking the city manager and city attorney to “investigate whether any city funds that were provided to either Santa Clara Family Health Foundation or VMC Foundation were used to fund any campaign activities in any manner,” according to a memo released Thursday. The memo notes that the city has given the foundations more than $6 million in the last three years.
Mar 21, 2013 by Jennifer Wadsworth Politics, Business, Culture, Media Comments (1)
The future cost of elections in San Jose could change dramatically depending on what happens at next week’s Elections Commission meeting.
San Jose’s Elections Commission received complaints last year about political candidates exchanging coffee for signatures on a nomination petition, raising money after the election to pay off campaign debt and mingling primary and general election funds. In response to some of these complaints, the city wants to update its campaign and ethics provisions, Title 12. A public meeting will be held March 28 at City Hall.
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