BREAKING: Special City Council Meeting Today to Discuss Taking Action on CVRA Lawsuit Before Judges Can Rule

By Robert Haugh

We got an unusual notice yesterday about a special city council meeting today. But as we’ve said before, nothing is really unusual with this new council.

Today at 1:15 p.m., the City Council will meet in closed session to discuss the California Voting Rights Act (CVRA) case. 

The meeting is being held less than 24 hours after the eNotify email went public at 2 p.m.  

This didn’t make a lot of sense since the CVRA appeals hearing happened yesterday morning. 

As we reported, the Sixth District Court of Appeal heard arguments from both sides. The judicial panel that heard the arguments were these judges: Eugene Premo, Franklin Elia and Allison Danner.

According to City staff, soon after the hearing, four Council members requested a closed session to discuss the case. 

That’s interesting because if more than three Council members talked to each other that would be a Brown Act violation.

Here’s what happened when yesterday with some interesting timing:

12:02 p.m. — New Councilman Suds Jain emailed City staff requesting the closed session. He copied Councilman Raj Chahal in his email.

Chahal tried to get the Council to throw in the towel and throw away over $3 million before the hearing at the December 8 Council meeting

Jain wrote in his email yesterday: “My desire is that this meeting occur ASAP with the intent that it is held before the judges issue a ruling.”  Wow. Sounds like Jain is concerned that the City might win the appeal.

12:46 p.m. — New Councilman Anthony Becker made his request to City staff for a closed session meeting. He did not copy Chahal.

12:51 p.m. — Councilwoman Karen Hardy made her request to City staff. She did not copy Chahal.

12:53 p.m. — New Councilman Kevin Park made his request to City staff. He did not copy Chahal.

We won’t be able to see the Council discuss the issue because it’s a closed meeting. But people can comment publicly before the closed session happens.

Here’s how:

The public may view the meetings on SantaClaraCA.gov, Santa Clara City Television (Comcast cable channel 15 or AT&T U-verse channel 99) or the livestream on the City’s YouTube channel or Facebook page.

NEWS FLASH red Rubber Stamp over a white background.

14 comments

  1. Not much longer now JB. I understand you sold your soul and now you want to enjoy your spoils.

    San Jose is a good place for you .👿

  2. There must be something pretty bad going on to keep the public from weighing in what is going on. What happened to Transparency? Are we headed back to back room deals under previous Mayor Jamie Matthews?
    What are you hiding forks?

  3. I wrote a letter early this morning informing the city council that I feel like the Brown Act was violated by Jain, Park, Hardy, Becker, and Chahal. I hope this letter is read to the public before their closed session and that the actions I’ve asked the city to take are taken.

    • Your email was read. It omitted the correct chronology as supplemented by the City Manager. The City Attorney opined no Brown Act violation based on the actual facts.
      You got anything else?

  4. I wish this was just an old episode of Seinfeld, Married with Children, or even The Simpsons. If that was the case I would be laughing right now. Instead I get to wake up to this everyday now that I am living in Yorkville.
    Seems like these City Council Members are serious about giving old Jed a quick ROI on his most recent investment. Can they be any less transparent?
    This can’t be legal.. or have the laws of the United States been put on hold here in Jed’s new Kingdom? Is Yorkville now the new West Coast version of “The Vatican”??
    Very curious to see how this plays out.
    Burt Field

    • Hi Burt. The CVRA oral argument in the Sixth District had nothing to do with the 49ers/York. Briefs were submitted well in advance of the election.
      I’d urge you to listen to a replay of oral argument. The Sixth District is going to, correctly, slam the City of Santa Clara. The City’s argument was disingenuous, although counsel did the best he could with bad facts.
      70 years with not one Asian American Santa Claran elected to Council, is pretty much dispositive (see, my earlier post just after oral argument). The law is what it is. Get the check book out for about $5MM. Never had to be (see, Sunnyvale,others) but Doyle decided to take residents down this stupid path. He owns this debacle.
      I have no idea what Council will be discussing in closed session today re: the CVRA suit. Hopefully, there is a directive from Council to direct Doyle to immediately settle the case, write a check and be done with it before the Sixth District publishes an opinion humiliating residents and officials.
      It’s just damage control.
      As to the 49ers, you and I (and indeed the new Councilmembers) have been on the same page (I’m presuming you voted against Measure J). Fact is it’s what residents voted for. No way to undo it. Look. The 49ers have the resources to spend Santa Clara into the ground, easily. That’s reality and what about 60% of residents voted for.
      Will the City have to cave to the 49ers on other matters? Of course. Penny wise pound foolish analysis. He who has the gold, makes the rules. The 49ers have the gold. Not residents.
      Ot. I will only respond to posts where posters reveal name, as Burt and I have.

      • Byron, it’s been awhile since we have actually conversed. I do read all your posting and sometimes even agree with them.
        I wish you still had a “Dog in the fight” so to speak, but I heard a few years ago you moved out of the City.
        So why do I believe Jed York is somehow behind all of this, and why the 49er City Council is working for him. Let’s just say I have at least 650,000 reasons to back my belief.

        When the City proposed Measure C, just a couple of years ago, Jed York reached into his own pocket and over a short period of time filled every mailbox over and over again with negative propaganda about this one (1) City wide Measure. I did not think it was possible to fill so many mailboxes with so much negative crap over such a short period of time…
        By the end, even I was confused on how to vote. In any election $650,000 buys you a lot. General confusion is just happens to be one of the byproducts.

        In a perfect world, I would have loved to have had multiple “Win / Win” scenarios. It was there, it was possible. The San Francisco 49ers and the City of Santa Clara could have worked together. That’s what I were sold, that’s what I bought when I voted to support Measure J.

        I guess what I have learned through this whole mess is this.
        1. When in doubt over legal issues always follow the money.
        2. When it comes to City wide issues, whatever Jed York wants something, I’m against it.

        Win or lose, this needs to go through the appeal process. I’m ok with whatever results happen.
        Burt Field

        • All good, Burt. True, I live in Willow Glen and have for years. Why do I care? Because of a larger principle. The trial court record “is what it is.” 70 years of a rigged electoral system to keep white people in elective office. Note: Under the CVRA is matters not if that was intentional (based on events, certainly looks that way).
          Who cares where you live. Were you not appalled at Bull Conner in Selma?
          That’s my point. Racism is abhorrent. Wherever and whenever. You do not have to have lived in Alabama to be outraged.
          My point was settle, move on and hold those who got Santa Clara into this disaster, accountable.

          As to the Yorks/49ers.

          The City has two choices. To fight every battle in arbitration where the City does not have the financial resources to compete. My god, you know that reality better than anyone re: Soccer Park.
          The other choice is to pick your fights if you must. Will Santa Clara get screwed for the most part? Absolutely! That’s been the experience of every city who voted to subsidize a billionaire NFL owner anyway!

          It’s magnified here because Santa Clara is arguably the smallest city to go down that proverbial rabbit hole. It was dumb and residents are stuck with it. If you know an alternative, please do share.

          Finally, note this. Of the current Councilmembers, it’s only Lisa (a dear friend for many, many years) and Kathy (met only briefly) who boosted for 1) subsidy for NFL billionaire and, 2) opposing CVRA lawsuit where common sense demanded otherwise.
          Those were very, very big mistakes.

          It’s just damage control for the new Council. Clean up the mess as it were.

      • This is great news! If we all use fake names Fleck will go away. Best Christmas present ever!

    • With all due respect to my friend Burt Field, this is one issue that has nothing to do with the 49ers. This comes down to how much are we going to pay for the City appealing this decision. Remember we have already lost on the original court decision. The City decided to appeal while other City’s like Sunnyvale settled and walked away. Now we are awaiting a decision on how much more we are going to pay for appealing. If I were on the council I would settle for about half of the 4.5 and walk away.

  5. It seems like many of the members of the council don’t mind calling their residents racist.

    That’s something you’ll never forget.

  6. Holy meeting request, Batman! 4 requests within an hour? Coincidence or coordinated communications? Serial Meeting violation? Whats the rush? Why not wait To hear from judge? Inquiring minds want to know! Whose giving direction to these people?

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