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Milestones: When In Trouble…Deflect!

Milestones When In Trouble…Deflect!, City Manager, Deanna Santana, Santa Clara Chamber PAC

When faced with uncomfortable facts, how do you save face?

Distort the truth with contrary statements, distortion and redirection.

Our City Manager, Deanna Santana, has publicly attacked this column as being less than truthful.



Now that Santana has hired 11 highly paid assistants, she has time to fantasize about reality and manufacture her own truths.

As Shakespeare wrote in Hamlet, “The lady doth protest too much, me thinks.”

When have you ever known of a City employee taking to social media to counteract a public statement? Well, besides the Mayor and her favorite blogger?

For example; Santana writes on “Nextdoor” that my column was filled with factual errors. She insists the Santa Clara Chamber PAC was errant in filing their reports for years.

However, the PAC’s City filings are on the City and County Netfile websites. They have been there for years. Funny, we looked up the PAC filings again and confirmed they were still there.

Santana notes in her public letter the PAC faces a potential of a minimum fine from the FPPC. This is wrong on two counts. First, the PAC is, and has been, in compliance since it started in 2010. Second, the FPPC has no such thing as a potential minimum fine.

Santana’s umbrage with my column is a tricky diversion tactic. Get people to look the other way while spending them blind.

Santana tells you I was wrong, and the Chamber is still operating the Convention Center. What she failed to mention is the City is using the Chamber’s tax ID number while managing and paying the Convention staff. The payroll is being paid by the City. The Chamber has asked the City to provide their own tax I.D. number, but they have not complied. Most likely because: if Convention Center employees became City employees as they should, they would be entitled to union benefits, retirement, pensions and wages. Oh…!

Now we know Santana was hired to do the Mayor’s bidding. Gillmor wants to be an executive mayor and we get that. But using Santana as a hired gun should mean she gets her facts straight. Attempting to confuse residents with twisted terms and misleading allegations doesn’t pass the smell test.

Another diversion by omission was the absence of our Council’s none action, falling asleep after receiving three warning letters from Attorney Robert Rubin threatening a voting rights lawsuit. This extended nap has cost taxpayers about $4 million dollars since we lost this avoidable lawsuit. Oh…did we mention the Council is appealing the judge’s ruling? That will add another million or so to our elastic City credit card. Chances of winning? Two…slim and not likely.

No folks…it’s not this column that’s confused. Our City leaders and Manager want you to believe them. They insist that transparency is their hallmark yet, recent mismanagement and spurious spending have met no boundaries, which they wish to cover through diversion.

Long term employees, who knew and know the Santa Clara way, have been passed over or ousted from town in favor of former cronies. This Council and Manager have spent millions of your money on audits, PR firms, surveys, opinion polls, consultants and still can’t get it right.

In time, the voters will.


Miles Barber was president of the Chamber board in 1984. He has continued to serve on the board periodically over the years.


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