Business

Neil Struthers out as CEO of County Building and Construction Trades Council

Neil Struthers served as the CEO of the Santa Clara & San Benito Counties Building & Construction Trades Council since 1999.

Neil Struthers is out as CEO of the powerful Santa Clara & San Benito Counties Building & Construction Trades Council, a source tells San Jose Inside. The circumstances of his departure from the labor organization are unclear. The Building and Trades Council oversees the training and representation of 23 craft unions and more than 30,000 construction industry workers employed in Silicon Valley, according to the organization’s website.

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Xavier Campos Cuts off Interview after Questions about Unusual Business Filings

San Jose Councilman Xavier Campos has still not fully explained his reasons for creating fictitious business names identical to his campaign committees.

For nearly two months, San Jose Councilman Xavier Campos has repeatedly refused to talk with Metro/San Jose Inside about fictitious business filings he and incarcerated former county Supervisor George Shirakawa Jr. initiated for their past political campaigns. The business filings had identical names to their political committees. An experienced political consultant described the filings as “somewhere between suspicious and corrupt,” as they could have been used to cloak a duplicate, secret bank account. On Thursday, however, Campos finally addressed the unusual fictitious business filings, when Metro/San Jose Inside sent reporter Stephen Layton to the councilman’s public office hours at Mayfair Community Center. Registered for the event under his own name as a San Jose resident concerned about crime, Layton recorded the brief conversation, which took place in a public facility, with Campos and the councilman’s chief of staff, Nicole Willett.

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Cortese, San Jose Mayors Split on Walmart

The benefit Walmart has on communities is a point of disagreement between Dave Cortese and two San Jose mayors. (Photo by Katherine Johnson, via Flickr)

Last month, Fly broke the Earth-shattering news that county supervisor and San Jose mayoral contender Dave Cortese isn’t too fond of Walmart. He refused to mention the store by name in an invite to his campaign kickoff, instead noting that the party was near a “Big Box” store. Crazy, we know. But just when the Internet was nearing recovery, a couple of mayors decided to reignite the fight.

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San Jose Marijuana Initiative Aims for 2014 Ballot

Proponents of an initiative filed Monday with the City Clerk want to place a regulatory measure on the November ballot.

A group of dispensary owners filed an initiative to bring a full set of marijuana regulations to San Jose voters this fall. The “Medical Marijuana Regulation for San Jose Act of 2014” aims to set a minimum of 50 pot clubs. It also asks the city to form a cannabis commission similar to the advisory boards it has for libraries and parks, land use and transportation, among other interests.

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KaBOOM! Helps Bring Play to San Jose

KaBoom! unveils a recently built community playground. The nonprofit is helping to bring a similar playground to San Jose.

I first heard of KaBOOM! a few years ago, when I began the San Jose Parks Foundation. The nonprofit works to ensure kids get the play they need to become healthy and successful adults. KaBOOM! elevates the conversation about the importance of play in children’s lives, while also creating great spaces. And with the nonprofit’s help, a new project should be coming to San Jose.

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How Rooftop Solar Got Its Groove Back

The solar industry took several steps forward in 2013. (Photo by Official U.S. Navy Imagery, via Flickr)

By all accounts, 2013 was a banner year for the solar industry in the halls of government and the court of public opinion. Across the country, big utilities launched attacks on policies like net metering to stifle innovation and maintain the profit margins that clean solar energy threatens to undermine. And in the face of multimillion-dollar lobbyist brigades, the solar industry grew up and learned to fight back.

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