By Robert Haugh
The transient occupancy tax or “hotel tax” passed in Santa Clara 75-25. That allows the City Council to add a fee on hotel room rates at Santa Clara hotels by up to four percent per night. It could raise as much as $7 million annually. That’s a lot of money coming to the general fund, but only if the travel industry returns to pre-pandemic levels.
Here some updates since yesterday on the City Council races. 62 percent of the vote is in.
In District 1, Kathy Watanabe holds onto her 54-46 lead over Harbir Bhatia. Watanabe has increased her vote margin from 238 to 297 since election night.
In District 4, Kevin Park holds onto his 57-43 lead over Teresa O’Neill. Park has increased his vote margin from 575 to 718.
In District 5, Suds Jain’s lead shrank from 64-36 to 62-38 over Bob O’Keefe, but it’s still commanding. His vote margin increased from 1,074 to 1,190 since election night.
In District 6, Anthony Becker saw his lead shrink over two competitors. Becker has lost two percentage points since election night, dropping from 44-42. Rob Mezzetti has held steady since election night at 37 percent. Gary Barve has increased from 19 to 21 percent. Becker’s vote margin over Mezzetti has shrunk from 357 to 281. If that trend continues, Mezzetti could overtake Becker. There are still 3-5,000 votes uncounted in the district.