Author: Katie Lauer (Katie Lauer)

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,...

Silicon Valley lawmakers announce proposals for action against hate crimes

Proposals to address local hate crimes at both city and county levels were announced at San Jose City Hall Wednesday afternoon. Led by San Jose Councilmember Maya Esparza and Santa Clara County Supervisor Cindy Chavez, the proposals call for implementing a regional Hate Crimes Task Force to address local hate crime and hate speech, especially...

Santa Clara County lawmakers approve firearm safe storage laws

Some elected leaders say gun laws can lead to trouble when equally applied to urban and rural areas – and that’s what Santa Clara County Supervisor Dave Cortese is trying to avoid. The Board of Supervisors on Tuesday unanimously approved his proposal requiring safe storage for firearms in homes on unincorporated county land. The ordinance, which primarily aims...

Santa Clara County OKs building low-income housing on vacant county land

There are nearly 80 acres of county-owned land sitting vacant – near hospitals and public transit – and now county lawmakers will look at turning it into apartments for homeless residents. Santa Clara County Supervisor Cindy Chavez presented a proposal at the Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday to look into building extremely low-income housing on that...

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