Direction on contracting and business license policies to combat wage theft and pay inequity
The committee will receive a report on four recommendations to improve pay equity:
- Improving pay equity reporting practices for directly-hired employees of the County.
- Terminating current contractors and disqualifying bidders for violating equal opportunity and nondiscrimination laws.
- Regulating businesses in unincorporated areas of the County by requiring business licenses, and making these contingent on compliance with pay equity laws.
- Adding baby changing stations in men’s restrooms in County facilities and in buildings open to the public in the unincorporated County.
Special hearing on hate crimes
The Committee will convene a special meeting on issues related to hate crimes in light of the 2016 Presidential election, and determine the next steps for developing a hate crimes communication and services plan. The hearing will have panel presentations on public safety, civil rights, race and religion, education, and LGBTQ issues. The panels will be followed by a public comment period, and then the hearing will conclude with a discussion by the Committee and the Hate Crimes Hearing Body.
Public entity: Santa Clara County Children, Seniors, and Families Committee
Date/time/location item will be heard: January 31, 2017, 6:30pm, Board of Supervisors’ Chambers
Link to item: Not yet posted
Link to agenda: http://sccgov.iqm2.com/Citizens/Detail_Meeting.aspx?ID=8710Tweet
Appointing Vice Mayor
Council will be voting on the Mayor’s recommended appointment of a member of the Council to serve as Vice Mayor. The Mayor has not yet announced who he will nominate.
Where: San Jose City Council
When: January 24, 2017, 1:30pmTweet
The 2016 election cycle seems to have carved out a new path for candidates who don’t like the outcome of their races: they sue. Both former Council Member Mahn Nguyen and his political ally, recently defeated Council candidate Jimmy Nguyen, say they are moving forward with lawsuits against the Registrar of Voters after losing their election bids.
Strangely, Jimmy Nguyen is not suing to change the outcome of the election. He does not even claim that correcting legal problems with the ballot counts would result in him being declared the winner. His goal appears to be political, not legal. He seeks to undermine voter confidence in the election itself. Having now run and lost twice, he may see this Trumpian tactic as a set up for yet another run for office.
Who would advise Jimmy Nguyen that attempting to cast doubt on the integrity of the election was a wise decision? That would be his legal counsel Jim Sutton, who was also former State Senator Leland Yee’s Campaign Treasurer when Yee was indicted for bribery, taking illegal cash contributions and corruption.
Mahn Nguyen’s strategy appears to be similar to Jimmy’s. Manh Nguyen is rumored to be considering a move to Council District 7, where he would run against incumbent Council Member Tam Nguyen in two years. Presumably Mahn Nguyen would claim that last year’s election, which he lost to Lan Diep, was actually stolen.Tweet
Report on County contracting policies, including pay equity, living wage, DBE contracting & Ariba implementation
The Committee will receive a report on Countywide contracting, including proposed policy revisions and contract language related to Pay Equity and Living Wage policies. The proposed living wage changes include an expansion of applicable solicitation types covered by the policy to all formal competitive procurement methods, as well as updates to the table of living wage rates.
Where: Santa Clara County Finance and Government Operations Committee
When: January 12, 2017, 2:00 pm, Board of Supervisors’ Chambers
Link to agenda: http://sccgov.iqm2.com/Citizens/Detail_Meeting.aspx?ID=8264Tweet
At the behest of big corporations, the federal government has all but taken away the freedom of workers to organize in order to get their fair share. When workers lack the freedom to organize, wages stagnate, the middle class shrinks and inequality soars. Contrary to Republican dogma, it is workers and not businesses who are over-regulated. American workers are crying out, not only for a social safety net, not only for good jobs, but for control over their future.Tweet
This year organized labor dodged a bullet when Justice Antonin Scalia’s death left the Supreme Court tied in the case of Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association. If Scalia had lived, the Court would have decided in Friedrichs that public sector workers cannot be required to pay for the services they receive from the union that represents the employees at their workplace. The decision to authorize workers to stop paying for services from which they benefit, like contract negotiations, and force unions to provide those services for free would have created a massive free rider problem for unions.
Unfortunately, for organized labor, Friedrichs is coming back under a different name: Janus v. AFSCME. In both cases, workers argued that requiring them to pay for union services violated their First Amendment right to free speech. The Supreme Court will almost certainly hear the case and could decide it as soon as 2018. President Trump will fill Scalia’s seat on the Court with a like-minded conservative, and that will mean organized labor will lose Janus.
A loss in Janus could cause a massive drop in union membership with dramatic collateral damage to progressive institutions and the democratic process itself. Many progressive leaders are elected on the strength of union grassroots organizing and money. Janus could decimate that source of progressive support. Labor and its allies had better be ready.Tweet
For more than 30 years the Labor Movement Holiday Party has brought holiday cheer and visits from Santa to thousands of Santa Clara County children and their families. This year’s celebration was no exception. The Labor Movement Holiday Party provided gifts, pictures with Santa, lunch, face painting, tokens to play games and live music to hard working families with limited resources. The event, which took place at Pavilion Hall at the Santa Clara County Fairgrounds, was made possible by the South Bay Labor Council, Working Partnerships USA, local residents and businesses and Toys for Tots.
At a time when many Silicon Valley families are struggling to meet their most basic needs, the Labor Movement Holiday Party was an opportunity for local unions to bring together thousands of County residents and spread Holiday joy.Tweet
Declaring vacancy on City Council to be filled by Council appointment
Council will be declaring a vacancy on City Council as a result of former Council member Roland Velasco’s election to Mayor, and directing staff to post a notice of intention to advertise and fill the vacancy. Former Council member Velasco’s term was set to expire in November 2018. If Council does not appoint a new member to Council within 30 days after the vacancy is declared, a special election will be held to fill this vacancy.Tweet
Jimmy Nguyen, candidate for San Jose City Council’s District 8 seat, has requested a manual recount of all the votes cast in the race. In a letter sent to the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters, Nguyen also asks for the opportunity to see “all rejected vote-by-mail and provisional ballot envelopes, all defective or ‘spoiled’ ballots which were remade by Registrar staff…and all tally sheets and other documentation from the automatic manual recount.”
Earlier this month, the Register of Voters certified the District 8 election results and, according to their website, Sylvia Arenas bested Nguyen by 97 votes.
Nguyen, who submitted his request just in time for today’s deadline, will have to pay for this recount himself. Owing to Nguyen’s wide ranging recount request, the Registrar estimates that it will cost nearly $77,000. The District 8 winner, Sylvia Arenas, has asserted her right to a recount in response to Nguyen’s filing.Tweet