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Milestones – Decorum is Due! – Opinion

Watching Santa Clara City Council meetings may not compete with Real Housewives of Atlanta or even rank in your top ten. However, these meetings are the face of Santa Clara and represent the City’s leadership.

The disdain for their colleagues and City staff demonstrated by Mayor Lisa Gillmor and her floundering lone supporter, Kathy Watanabe, is a disgrace.

You might think that our new city manager and city attorney, both who have put forward thoughtful ideas, helpful suggestions and council support, would receive the professional courtesy they have earned and deserve.


Not so.

Gillmor and Watanabe appear offended at virtually every Council decision. Most notable is their opposition to resolving any and all stadium issues, including the long overdue settlement with the 49ers.

Even though this decision will pump millions into Santa Clara’s budget, these two voted against the settlement, and pouted throughout the proceedings and the final vote.

This Council decision was huge. It brought to an end long-standing arguments about sharing the wealth created by the stadium, and the 49ers being in Santa Clara. The agreement was fair, it was profitable, and it was long overdue.

However, the Council’s decision brought a wrecking ball to Mayor Gillmor’s long, drawn-out feud and campaign crutch of continually blaming the 49ers for any and all ills in Santa Clara.

After she persuaded nearly 60% of Santa Clara voters to approve the construction of Levi’s Stadium, she then co-opted the stadium opposition party, and now accuses those who campaigned against the stadium of being 49ers pawns. She created an anti-49ers majority on the Council made up of people who appeared in 2010’s pro-stadium TV ads — paid for by the 49ers.

Gillmor and her majority ran a lot of City talent out of town. She recruited such notables as City Manager Deanna Santana, who left a trail of chaos in her wake around the Bay Area, and the non-achieving City Attorney Brian Doyle.

It took a new Santa Clara City Council to restore balance, decorum and fiscal integrity.

The current council has also hired experienced professionals to help repair the out-of-whack budget and run-amuck issues about stadium revenue and public safety costs.

Residents, we owe appreciation to our Council and thanks to the talent they have recruited to put Santa Clara back on track to be in the black.

The battle for Council control and common sense has been won in favor of sanity. It would be appropriate that Mayor Gillmor and Council Member Watanabe spend a week or two reading Dale Carnegie’s book, “How to Win Friends and Influence People!”

Previous Milestones: 
Milestones – A Safer Community? – Opinion
Milestones: Lawless Law Should Be Unlawful! – Opinion
Milestones – Maybe Give It Up! – Opinion


  1. John Haggerty 1 month ago

    I would like to see the majority of five on our City Council now focus like a laser beam on reducing our city’s massively bloated, overpaid, over-pensioned public payroll. Since these five Council Members have not received campaign contributions from the well-heeled public employee unions, they are uniquely well-situated to promptly resolve that critical problem. If we quickly resolve that problem, we will not have to pass massive bonds for the first time in the history of our city to take care of a lot of deferred maintenance. We will be able, once again, to pay for that maintenance out of our current revenues. I believe that this bloated payroll has cost our city a lot more than the 49ers ever have. If the minority on the Council engages in any distraction tactics, the majority must politely, but firmly and succinctly, remind them, “We are the majority of the Council now and we have our own pressing priorities to attend to — the ones that we were elected to resolve by a majority of our city. Please respect that.”

  2. Fred 1 month ago

    What would be more appropriate for Gillmor and Watanabe to do would be to resign.

    John Haggerty, the majority that wants to fix the City’s problems may be polite and firm with those two, but do you think they will listen?

  3. The Dude 4 weeks ago

    Who do you think votes for these contracts that give city employees raises? It all comes down to the city council….They all vote to give these raises.

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