Wanted in Santa Clara: Common Sense and Honesty, not Coverups and Abuse of Power

By Burt Field

Today’s Santa Clara City Council meeting may be a memorable one – but not in a good way.

First, the 49er Five are considering the 49ers‘ offer to settle the lawsuits against the City.

As former City Attorney Brian Doyle wrote, it’s a “cover up” for the team’s misdeeds. Those misdeeds include wage theft, conflicts of interest, and self dealing – all pretty serious stuff.

The desire to settle makes no sense for the City. The team is clearly worried about the strength of their case and a September court date. So why would the City even consider this?

Combined the 49er Five have received $3 million in political support and free gifts from the team for which they are being investigated. All we have to do to understand them is follow the money.

They’ll argue that the settlement is a benefit to the City. But would anyone who’s objective say that?  How about having an independent third party evaluate the deal? That would be a common-sense approach.

But the 49er Five don’t seem to have common sense. Or maybe they’re so beholden to the team that they’ve forgotten they have a duty to Santa Clara taxpayers.

They may have also lost their political senses. Once Jed York gets what he wants, he won’t need them. We heard York make all kinds of promises to Santa Clarans during the stadium campaign. From the soccer park to the curfew, he’s broken them all. It’s more than a coincidence. It’s a pattern and it’s his personality.

Another vote that is likely to happen at the Council meeting is the removal of Dr. Ron Patrick from the Planning Commission.

He’s a qualified resident and he’ll be a good commissioner. Dr. Patrick’s credentials are outstanding and he’s willing to serve our community. We should be thankful. 

Dr. Patrick was unanimously appointed by the Council. But Anthony Becker who made the motion to appoint Dr. Patrick changed his mind and now wants him gone.

When did Becker change his mind?  He says he got home the night of the vote and remembered that Dr. Patrick lived in Mountain View. That’s not believable.

What is believable is that Dr. Patrick is being targeted for removal by the 49ers because he has complained about the stadium operations and the trouble they’ve caused for the residences and the surrounding businesses like his.

If Dr. Patrick is removed, it is clearly an abuse of power. It would be an unprecedented move and not what we’re used to in the Mission City.

The Santa Clara Way used to be common sense and honesty. Now it’s cover ups and abuse of power. 

We can change that at the ballot box. If you’re interested in helping the recall effort, please email me: Burt.Field@gmail.com

The 49er Five

Editor’s Note: The 49er Five are Councilmembers Anthony Becker, Raj Chahal, Suds Jain, Karen Hardy and Kevin Park.

Jed York spent $3 million in November 2020 to elect Becker, Jain, and Park. They were previously 0-6 in Santa Clara elections. Chahal and Hardy have received gifts from the team recently without reporting them.

The 49er Five meet with the team on an almost weekly basis and have voted to help the team win millions of dollars in concessions from the City since December 2020.

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