Author: Katie Lauer (Katie Lauer)

Santa Clara County rape crisis centers to receive $600K to support survivors

Santa Clara lawmakers voted this week to award $600,000 to two local rape crisis centers for sexual assault survivors, the latest push by county leaders to bolster women’s services and combat sexual violence. The YWCA-Silicon Valley will receive $503,000 in funding and $97,000 will be allotted to Community Solutions through two one-time contracts. Supervisor Cindy...

How a Santa Clara County sales tax hike died before a vote

Silicon Valley residents who worry they’re being overtaxed can breathe a sigh of relief. They just dodged another one. A proposed 5/8-cent sales tax increase pitched by county lawmakers to fund health care, child care and environmental protections won’t appear on the ballot next year. Santa Clara County Supervisor Cindy Chavez decided Tuesday to pull...

Almaden Valley residents mull the future of downtown San Jose

Despite its distance from the city’s downtown core, Almaden Valley and its residents will experience far-reaching impacts from massive plans for downtown redevelopment – both in quality of life and tax dollars. A panel of local nonprofit and development leaders met with about 50 residents of Almaden Valley on Monday to discuss the future of downtown...

In diverse Silicon Valley, lawmakers are flooded with hate mail

San Jose prides itself on its diversity — a myriad of different cultures represented by an equally diverse City Council. But behind the scenes, many lawmakers in the heart of Silicon Valley are bombarded with aggressive and threatening hate mail, often mirroring stereotypically racist rhetoric. Though some councilmembers didn’t report receiving much hate mail during...

South Bay independent contractors share mixed feelings about AB5

Update: California legislators approved Assembly Bill 5 in a 29 to 11 vote in the State Senate Tuesday night. The most recent amendment added manicurists to the list of professions affected, including both Uber and Lyft drivers.  Independent contractors across Santa Clara County might soon be classified as employees if a new bill continues to...

Santa Clara County searches for its next Poet Laureate

In an effort to help elevate poetry and celebrate the literary arts, Santa Clara County is looking for its next Poet Laureate, a poet appointed by the government to compose poems for special occasions. Established in 2008 by the Board of Supervisors, local poets are chosen based on their past bodies of work. “The Santa...

Santa Clara County supervisors push for more oversight on new jail project

While mulling recommendations this week for contract changes for the new jail facility design, Santa Clara County lawmakers took the opportunity to call for additional oversight over the massive project. Jeff Draper, the director of the county’s Facilities and Fleet department, requested an increase in the project’s supplemental work allowance to install a permanent generator...

Santa Clara County lawmakers declare a Climate Emergency

Santa Clara County Supervisor Dave Cortese’s resolution to declare a climate emergency was approved by the Board of Supervisors earlier this week. The declaration acknowledges that global climate change is “caused by human activities” that have resulted in a climate emergency that impacts the well-being health and safety of Santa Clara County residents. It demands immediate...

Was San Jose’s massage parlor crackdown a success?

Nearly four years after San Jose prioritized combating illegal massage parlors, statistics paint an unclear picture of compliance despite the controversial measure’s success in closing a vast number of businesses. According to Lt. Paul Messier, of the San Jose Police Department’s Special Investigations Unit, there are currently 80 massage businesses remaining in San Jose. That’s...

Santa Clara County supervisors push for new sales tax measure

A new sales tax could bring additional funding to Santa Clara County, amid predictions of future revenue losses and budget threats. The Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday advanced a proposal from Supervisor Cindy Chavez for a 5/8-cent sales tax increase to provide funding for prioritized services such as health care, child care,...