Labor Hits Candidate Harbir Bhatia for Connections to Developer SiliconSage and 49ers — Both Accused of Wage Theft

By Robert Haugh

Local Labor has sent two mailers into District 1 opposing Harbir Bhatia for City Council.

One mailer slams her for being a director at SiliconSage, a local developer. According to Labor’s mailer, the developer is accused in court filings of stealing wages of construction workers.

Bhatia was a director at SiliconSage but resigned just before she declared her candidacy for City Council.

The mailer also criticizes Bhatia for hiding her association with SiliconSage on her ballot statement.

SiliconSage and Bhatia are currently under a City investigation for violating the City’s lobbyist ordinance.

A second mailer asks the question “Why are the 49ers Spending Big Bucks to Draft Bhatia for City Council.”

Bhatia is one of four candidates Jed York is spending an unprecedented $1.4 million to support for City Council. The others are Anthony Becker (District 6), Suds Jain (District 5) and Kevin Park (District 4).

The 49ers were also caught by the City for committing wage theft from workers at the stadium last year.  

The City reported the team to the state Attorney General and started the process to terminate the non-NFL management contract.


  1. It seems time to ban “Big Money” PAC contributions from Santa Clara politics. Many of the incumbents are benefiting from campaign funding provided by The Related, so it’s not like others aren’t benefiting from large contributions either.

    • Do you think $25k v. $1.4m is a fair comparison? How many text msgs, commercials have you seen paiid for by Related?

    • Frank, every election, and I mean every election people, groups donate to the candidates they wish to see win an election.
      The point you are bringing up sounds valid until you look just a little closer and you will notice there is a disparity in the amount of money being handed out here.
      As I have stated in a previous post, we are not talking Apples to Oranges, we are talking small rocks to a volcanic eruption landing on your house.
      $25K to currently $1.4 Million
      Can I say it another way? How about comparing the disparity in money too, “Sling shots to Tactical Nuclear Weapons”. Both can hurt, both can be effective. Only one will remove you from Earth.
      Since Stand up for Santa Clara uncovered the previous Dark Money that the 49ers had infused into our recent local elections, I can fully appreciate that currently, the 49ers can now pour whatever amount of money they feel they need to spend to win these elections, and of course any future election.

      This is not about diversity, this is not about gender, race or new fresh ideas. This is 100% about one local company not getting their way, getting caught with their hands in the cookie jar and trying to punish all those that caught them and punished them. Ultimately the “New Fresh Ideas”, will be ideas that benefit the 49ers, and punish the City that paid for the Stadium. I hope you can see that, even if you think you are right, you hopefully can connect the dots, or follow the money.

      Go onto your computer and do a Google search. My guess is somehow, someway your local candidate is going to pop up. I don’t do social media, but my guess is money is being spent there as well. Then walk out to your poor little mail box this week. If Measure C was any indication, or what I have received so far is a clue you are going to receive at least two new mailers. One very positive for the 49ers candidate, the other a very glossy professional “Hit Piece”, on their opponent. It will be ugly. Maybe if you are lucky you will see the 49ers candidate on TV, or for sure in the Mercury, SC Meakly or some other publications that needed the 49ers money just to keep their doors open.
      By the way, I’m still looking at the sky waiting for a plane to pull some banners across our valley promoting one of their 4 candidates.

      $1.4 Million goes a looooooooog way. And remember keep an eye on this amount. I’d be very surprised if this number does not in fact even grow right up until the election night. Deep Pockets are just that, Deep Pockets.

      So you are correct, money is involved here.

      In the mean time, I’m tossing small rocks, while volcanic rocks are landing all around my house. I can’t move my house. I’m just hoping the volcano will stop erupting so I can continue to live here.

      Burt Field

  2. This is nonsense and a bunch lies. Vote with your experience. Harbir has been a community organizer, way before she was in Santa Clara… it’s deep in her bones. Vote with your personal experience of the candidates. And Kathy in my experience has been incredibly unimpressive unfortunately.

    We need some fresh views and efficiency and diversity in our city leadership.

  3. This is great news. We all know Santa Clara is an unbelievable city. We are a small city, yet we are now faced with “Big City” issues. How we handle these issues will frame our city not just for us, but for those who follow us.

    Keep talking… keep being that neighbor that makes us such a wonderful place to live. Be proud of what this city represents, and remember who we are, and just as important, who we are not.

    What I do now is I help intelligent people play connect the dots. How to follow the money.

    Vote… Vote….Vote…. What did that cost me to say? Not $1.4 million.

    Burt Field

  4. It’s really stifling for the city to have this billion dollar bad guy, the 49ers trying to corrupt our politicians to take control of our city.

    When you see the 49ers political statements, vote the other way!

    Imagine Becker, Bhatia, Jain, and Park all wearing 49er helmets.

  5. I think district 1 is safe from Bhatia. Why would the voters of the north side trade awesome representation for a bunch of lies. The 49ers have not been a friend to District 1.

    Kathy Watanabe has been a friend to District 1 residents helping with all the stadium issues. Kathy is always available and is against weekday late night events.

  6. The four candidates may be completely in the dark, as some say, but they are chosen for s reason.
    But even if they are just pawns in the niners effort to weaken the council, we still need to resist and not vote them in.

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