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Policy Watch: Your weekly tip sheet for what’s happening in your community

By The Left Hook

Most government offices are slowing down or closing down for the holiday week, but here’s what’s coming up after the holidays:

San Jose

Special holiday closed session

The San Jose City Council loves working together so much, they’ve scheduled a special meeting for December 30th, when they would ordinarily be snowboarding or something cool like that.  The special closed session meeting was called to discuss the appointment of an interim city manager now that City Manager Ed Shikada plans to make Dec. 31st his last day with the city.  Shikada resigned last week after seeing the writing on the wall that his days were numbered with Sam Liccardo in charge.

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Surprise! Council Appoints Pre-Approved D4 Replacment

By The Left Hook

After five hours of what many called a “charade”, 6 San Jose City Council members decided to appoint former City Council rep. Margie Matthews to fill the vacant District 4 seat.   Council Member Pierluigi Oliverio surprised many in the audience ready to object to the anti-democratic, unethical process of rushing through a pre-determined appointment with his own version of torture for his fellow council members to let them know just how peeved he was for ignoring the democratic process. 

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SJ City Manager Bids Adieu…by Force

By The Left Hook

This just in…It looks like Mayor-elect Liccardo is continuing with his power play.  The latest victim is City Manager Ed Shikada, who tried to put forth an effort to repair the destroyed relationship between City leaders and workers.  Shikada released this letter to City workers today, leaving the way open for Liccardo to hand pick his own City Manager in the New Year. #ForcedOut

Dear San José Employees,

 Earlier this afternoon I officially informed Mayor Reed and the City Council of my decision to resign as San José City Manager, effective January 1, 2015.

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Recent Articles

16
Dec
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Liccardo, Allies, Forge Through Brick Wall of Protest on D4 Appointment Process

By The Left Hook

There was an eloquent and well thought-out argument by Council Member Ash Kalra.  A substitute motion by Council Member Don Rocha to hold off on an appointment until January even drew the support of oft-opponent Council Member Pierluigi Oliverio.  But Mayor-elect Sam Liccardo was determined to ram through his plans to appoint a campaign supporter as a temporary replacement for the vacant District 4 Council seat with almost no community outreach and little notice of his intention.

“The issue is process,” said Kalra, speaking in support of Rocha’s motion to delay an appointment until January, when the residents of District 4 have a chance to more fully consider a wider range of candidates. “This is not the kind of process that anybody should be proud of,” said Kalra, referring to Liccardo’s defiance of the democratic process of complying with Sunshine rules and government transparency. Read more »

16
Dec
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Comprehensive Living Wage Law Passes, a Model for the Nation

By The Left Hook

After months of research and public discussions, Santa Clara County Supervisors have officially passed the most comprehensive Living Wage ordinance in the nation. A week ago, Supervisors approved the progressive details of the newly proposed law, which include: requiring county contractors to pay employees a living wage, with health and retirement credits, paid sick leave, a voice on the job without fear of retaliation, and groundbreaking fair workweek provisions including full time work and flexible hours . Read more »

15
Dec

Liccardo Backpedaling Along

By The Left Hook

Bowing to pressure from those who support an open, Democratic  and transparent government, San Jose Mayor-elect Sam Liccardo is now pulling the reins, a tiny bit, on rushing to appoint a campaign supporter of his as a replacement for the open District 4 seat.  But it’s not enough.  Community leaders and good government advocates are outraged at the way the Mayor-elect seems to be starting off his mayoral career with hard ball, power-grabbing tactics that go against everything democracy stands for.

Liccardo filed this memo on tomorrow’s council agenda asking the council to conduct the appointment vote at a special meeting Friday December 19th, adding an extra two and a half days’ notice (to the two days already given)  of the open seat appointment. We’re not sure we can say it any louder in print: THAT DOESN’T HELP.   Read more »

15
Dec
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Policy Watch: Your weekly tip sheet for what’s going on in your community

By The Left Hook

San Jose:

Reed/Liccardo seek to ram D4 Council replacement through, waiving Sunshine rules.

As recommended by the Rules and Open Government Committee on December 10, 2014, the council is being asked to appoint an interim representative for Council District 4 to serve until a new council member has been elected. (Mayor/Liccardo).

Reed and Liccardo recommend appointing former Council member Margie Matthews to the vacant seat, effective January 13, 2015 and concluding with the seating of an elected council member in August 2015. Read more »

12
Dec
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Dueling Memos Debate D4 Replacement Process

By The Left Hook

UPDATE: Memo madness.

Two more memos were added to Tuesday’s San Jose City Council agenda, in an attempt to pull the reins on Mayor-elect Liccardo’s rush to appoint an ally on the dais.

While nevertheless expressing his great respect for likely appointee Margie Matthews, Councilman Don Rocha called for a longer application process with the Council taking up the option to appoint a temporary  replacement in District 4 on January 13th, when everyone is back from the holiday break. Read more »

11
Dec
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District 4 Appointment is Coming Up Quickly

By The Left Hook

UPDATE:

Two candidates have thrown their names into the pot to be considered for a temporary appointment to serve in District 4: David Hernandez, and former City Council member Margie Mathews, according to the City Clerk’s office.  Anyone else interested has until noon today to apply for consideration, and the City Council is expected to make an appointment Tuesday Dec. 16th. However, when we inquired about how people were supposed to  know the process was getting started, a source in the City Clerk’s office said it was on their website and “some outreach” was done, but that person could not say what the “outreach” was. The announcement could not be found on the City Clerk’s website.

After promising a conciliatory, inclusive approach to leading the City of San Jose, Mayor-elect Sam Liccardo is doing just the opposite.  And he hasn’t even taken office yet.  Kansen Chu’s election to the California Assembly opened up his San Jose City Council seat, and now Liccardo is now trying to ram though a temporary appointment to that seat.

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10
Dec
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Teachers are Not the Only Critical Workers in Education

By Joshua Pechthalt

The women and men who clean classrooms, drive school buses, maintain security on campuses, assist students, greet parents, prepare and serve food in cafeterias, maintain and repair schools and assist teachers in the classroom are the glue that keep our schools and public education working.  Read more »

9
Dec
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Santa Clara County Sets Progressive Living Wage Standards

By The Left Hook

Santa Clara County Supervisors have taken the bold step toward establishing the most comprehensive living wage law in the nation.  At the board meeting Tuesday morning, Supervisors voted 3 to 1 (yea: Chavez, Cortese, Yeager; nay: Wasserman; Supervisor Joe Simitian abstained) on the substance of a law that will require county contractors to pay their employees a living wage, in most instances in this area is between $17 and $19 an hour, in addition to requiring several other measures to make it easier for lower wage workers to make ends meet in Silicon Valley. Read more »

8
Dec
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San Jose Contractor Flouting Multi-Million Dollar Wage Theft Violation

By Bob Brownstein and Elly Matsumura

The second largest waste and recycling company in the world is playing chicken with the City of San Jose, in a wage theft game that’s worth 14 million dollars to the City, and nearly five million to workers.

 Republic Services was found to have been underpaying its sorters since 2011 to the tune of millions of dollars. When the City ordered Republic to pay restitution in December 2013, it found the company owed its workers $2.6 million in back wages. So far Republic is flouting  the City’s order to correct the violation, so in the year since that original order, it has shorted these workers another $2.2 million.http://thelefthook.com/wp-includes/js/tinymce/plugins/wordpress/img/trans.gif Read more »

8
Dec
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Policy Watch: Your weekly tip sheet for what’s going on in your community

By Dennis Raj

City of San José

Interim Appointment

Mayor Reed and Mayor-elect Liccardo have jointly issued a memo to the Rules and Open Government Committee seeking an interim appointment for Council District 4 until a new council member can be elected in the upcoming special election. Read more »

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