The Old Quad Residents’ Association held the first Santa Clara Mayoral and Clerk Candidate Forum September 20 in the American Legion Hall at 958 Homestead Road. As a member of the OQRA Board I volunteered to be the point of contact for all candidates. Ground rules, which included “The candidates may not use props, cell phones or notes,” were sent to all candidates prior to the Forum. A few candidates had questions that I answered.
A couple of days before the Forum Hosam Haggag asked if he could live stream the Forum even though it might give him an advantage by attracting viewers to his website. He was told that no candidate would be given any advantage over others, so no one could do that. The night of the Forum Mr Haggag brought his live streaming equipment, and I reminded him of OQRA’s position. He said he forgot and put his equipment in his car.
When the Clerk candidates took their seats on stage, Mr Haggag put a notepad in front of himself, and his peers reminded him about the notetaking rule, so he put the notepad on the floor and said something like I guess I didn’t read the rules. As soon as the Forum began he retrieved the notepad and continued to take notes throughout the Forum. I was in the back of the room and was unaware of this until later, and then I reviewed the Forum video which you may also find interesting on the OQRA facebook page.
Sometimes rules aren’t clear, but these were. Although the written definition of City Clerk doesn’t include obeying rules and not taking advantage of situations, I would think these ideas obvious, and so I decided that his disturbing behavior should be made known.