How do San Jose city services compare to other South Bay cities?
San Jose’s parks are, for the most part, poorly maintained and pale in comparison to the facilities found in Santa Clara and Cupertino. Once a source of pride for our city, San Jose’s neighborhood parks have markedly declined over the past decade.
Visit a park in the city of Santa Clara, and one almost always sees a city worker (or two) doing some sort of park maintenance. In San Jose, you’re lucky if they mow the weeds once a month. (Yes, WEEDS!)
Perhaps the most telling indication of the low priority given to city parks by the San Jose City Council is the fact that park restrooms are locked on weekends, a time when many parks are used the most. The city’s budget situation is so bad that money can’t be found to keep the restrooms open on Saturdays and Sundays.
The condition of San Jose’s streets is a joke, but no one is laughing. A recent “Urban Roads Report” issued by the National Transportation Research Group listed San Jose as having some of the worst roads in the country.
Street maintenance has been given a very low priority when it comes to the city budget. Maintenance and repairs have been deferred to the point that San Jose has a maintenance backlog list of several hundred miles. For a major American city centered in an area of great wealth, to have such poorly maintained roads is inexcusable.
There are a lot of quality employees working in San Jose’s libraries. I would also give high marks to the quality of resources and technology that can be accessed through the San Jose public library system.
However, San Jose libraries could be better. Branch libraries are noisy places. Unlike the Santa Clara City library, where cell phones must be turned off, and loud, disruptive behavior is not permitted, San Jose branch libraries are sometimes a loud, free-for-all. The noise level can be, at times, a joke. And, the libraries also fall victim to the budget mess, with most branches closing their doors on Sundays.