In 2012, Julio Fuentes was hired as City Manager of Santa Clara. He was hired to drag us out of the recession.
Things were bad. City reserves had dipped to $2.5 million dollars, business was in the tank, the 49ers were losing, and 17% of homes were being foreclosed on.
Fuentes enticed a billion-dollar company to come to the aid of the City. At least it gave residents hope.
The Related Companies were offered our golf course in exchange for building the largest retail and office complex in the South Bay area (Related Santa Clara). This project would produce millions in lease money along with millions in tax revenue.
Fast forward to 2019. Business is booming, the 49ers are winning, the City Manager says Santa Clara is flush with cash and…the Related Companies still have the golf course property tied up. The golf course has closed, David’s Restaurant has moved to his banquet facility and yet, not one dollar has been paid to the City by Related.
Maybe they are waiting for the next downturn.
David’s Banquet Facility has been asked by the City to move somewhere else and he has been looking for a new home. Santa Clara officials have shown him about every available property in the area.
Nothing fits and he hasn’t moved.
The City Council wanted him out so they might proceed with the grand Related project.
David still had about a decade left on his lease.
Since David wouldn’t move, the City Council brought an eminent domain action against him and offered him $5,000 for a buyout of his lease.
Not a very big thank you for 30 years of service to Santa Clara and 10 years to go on his lease.
Remember, David moved from El Camino out to Tasman when it was still an idea; no stadium, little industry, many empty lots and only a golf course.
The City did give the Hyatt Hotel a few hundred thousand dollars for their share of the tennis courts.
It was no surprise when David sued the City and this issue will now work itself out in court.
David’s Restaurant and banquet facility is still in business.
Let’s see: David’s has been there 30 years. Related has had the property tied up since 2012.
David has paid his lease to the City every month.
Related has yet to pay the first dollar.
Quid quo pro is getting a lot of headlines lately. It would just seem that, something for something, should apply in the case of David’s and Related.