Author: Special to San José Spotlight

Op-ed: COPA challenges displacement

The op-ed against COPA by Neil Collins of the Santa Clara County Association of Realtors is misleading, factually inaccurate and frankly irresponsible. The Community Opportunity to Purchase Act (COPA) is a policy that would allow nonprofit housing providers engaged with and supported by the current tenants to be able to make the first offer whenever...

Smith: It’s time for San Jose to follow the law

San Jose prides itself on its so-called “sunshine” policies and transparency measures. But the truth is, the Bay Area’s largest city and its government are shrouded in secrecy and darkness. Six years ago, I was the plaintiff in a California Public Records Act lawsuit against San Jose, which resulted in a landmark California Supreme Court...

Op-ed: Public Records Act enforcement needed more than ever

Recently, the San Jose Rules Committee, composed of four councilmembers, unanimously passed a motion intending to make Public Records Act (PRA) requests more restrictive and therefore likely to be unsuccessful. While we doubt any local jurisdiction is legally able to change the state’s PRA regulations, and the committee’s proclamation is consequently only a performative gesture, such shenanigans are...

Bini: Sargent Ranch quarry is important to building Santa Clara County’s sustainable future

The proposed Sargent Ranch sand and gravel quarry in lower Santa Clara County presents the Bay Area with a unique opportunity to help the region develop a sustainable, locally-sourced vital building material while ensuring long-term protections for ecological and tribal resources. The construction-grade sand at the site is a key ingredient for the concrete we...

Diridon: Societal suicide by carbon combustion is not ethical at any price

A headline in the New York Times on Oct. 28 reads, “Exxon and Chevron Racked Up Giant Profits.” Is it ethical to charge outrageous prices while selling huge volumes of polluting gasoline, to maximize profits, when the world is fighting climate change and inflation? The November 2015 issue of National Geographic pulled the climate issue together...

Martinez: Three reasons to shop small this holiday season

The holiday season will look different across the U.S. this year. Rising prices are hitting wallets hard and nearly a third of Americans plan to spend less on gifts and decor. At the same time, local businesses are still recovering from the pandemic’s economic impacts, while also balancing supply chain challenges and a slowing economy....

Op-ed: Young moms have a solution to the child care crisis in Santa Clara County

In Santa Clara County and throughout California, young mothers do not have equitable access to child care or economic opportunities. In a study conducted by the Young Women’s Freedom Center and Alliance for Girls, young mothers in Santa Clara County said their main barriers to child care were high costs, service ineligibility for parents under 18, lack...

Op-ed: In a multiracial democracy, we need to demand better from our leaders

San Jose councilmembers voted 7-4 on Dec. 5 to fill two vacancies through an appointment process by the end of January. We’re grateful to Councilmembers David Cohen, Sergio Jimenez, Dev Davis, Sylvia Arenas, Maya Esparza, Raul Peralez and Magdalena Carrasco for honoring their positions and doing what’s right for San Jose. Their decision ensures residents...

Perry: Housing lessons from the 2022 elections

The 2022 elections in San Jose taught us once again that candidates fail to address the housing and homelessness issue at their peril. Cindy Chavez actually had a better housing program than Matt Mahan did, but it appeared that Mahan cared more deeply about the issue, because he kept hammering on it. Although Chavez clearly...