Aaron Resendez Admits Lobbying in Exchange for Campaign Money

Aaron Resendez may be the first person to ever run for a seat on the San Jose City Council while simultaneously planning to become a registered lobbyist. The question is: should he already be registered? Resendez told Fly that in addition to serving as president of the Story Road Business Association, he also runs a consulting service for businesses that need an in at the city and county. Just recently, he said, he helped restaurant Mexico Lindo on The Alameda deal with noise complaints and a karaoke permit. “I had to talk to the planning department; I had to talk to the mayor,” Resendez said. “But I know those people. That’s why people ask for my help. I’m very well known with the people at City Hall and in the county.” He said his fee is “confidential,” but money for meetings sure sounds like lobbying. Apparently, that’s just the half of it. The underdog in the District 5 race featuring oft-investigated Councilman Xavier Campos and mail-stricken Magdalena Carrasco has also been trading favors for campaign contributions. “I’ve been helping a construction company, a demolition company, work with the county, but I didn’t take payment,” Resendez told Fly. “He donated to my campaign instead.” That sounds all sorts of illegal, but Resendez added that he got clearance for his activities from City Clerk Toni Taber. “Yes, I’m lobbying on behalf of the business association, but I have to make a living,” Resendez said. “I double-checked with the city clerk, but she told me I don’t have to register as a lobbyist. I’ll do that in June when I’m no longer (association) president.” Taber could not be immediately reached to confirm that conversation as she’s attending a city clerk seminar (which we hear are frickin’ ragers) in Pasadena this week. There are rumblings, however, that some board members in Resendez’ association are furious about his side biz.


The Fly is the valley’s longest running political column, written by Metro Silicon Valley staff, to provide a behind-the-scenes look at local politics. Fly accepts anonymous tips.


  1. Wow… I am speechless. I cannot believe Aaron is being attacked this way. He is an honest hard working man who has done nothing but help District 5. I wonder how much money way paid so that this article could be written. Someone must really want his good named soiled. Aaron is the most, no let me refraze that, ONLY honest man running for D5! This sounds like an article out of the National Enquirer if you ask me. Can’t San Jose Insider write an article with true facts.

  2. Aaron Resendez is not only an honest and caring man, but also one of the hardest working people I have had the pleasure in knowing. Aside from being my uncle, I have seen with my own eyes the hard work he puts into anything he does and how passionate he is with his work. Not many politicians can say that about themselves. It is mind blowing what some people will do in order to come up on top, such a writing a completely false article such as this one. My uncle and the rest of the Resendez family come from a long hard working background and nothing has ever come easy for this man.

    • He may indeed be an honest man, but how can someone take on a lawmaking role without understanding existing laws?

  3. I predict the Shasta Hanchett residents on Sierra Ave, which abutt the loud Mexico Lindo restaurant will have their own shill, probably PierreLuigi Oliverio, working to overturn any permissions for Karaoke and live music. Regardless of Mr Resendez’ connections, Shasta Hanchett property values will always win over bad renditions of Vincente Fernandez.

  4. This sounds more like a lack of sophistication on the part of Mr. Resendez, than it does blatant crookery, but he’d be well-advised to cease such activities. On the plus side of the ledger, helping out a great restaurant like Mexico Lindo is actually a benefit to the community. And no, I’m not joking.

  5. Nice guy or not, as a resident of the district he is seeking to run. I do not feel he has the experience or background needed to improve the quality of life in our district. My district does not deserve to be ran by an incompetent “nice guy”.

  6. He need to learn English. Otherwise the city is going to have to hire a translator. This is ridiculous!

  7. He use to be my soccer coach back in 2009 hes a good man he would worry always worried about everyone else he always wanted change always talked about making the east side better

  8. And he knows first hand the struggles of growing up in the east side so who better than to elect someone who sees there neighbors sons brothers and sister victims of the violence that has been hitting us these years

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