By Robert Haugh
The City will have a training session on “Open Government and Ethics rules” on Thursday, October 26, from 5 to 8 p.m. at Santa Clara City Hall in the Council Chambers.
Santa Clara City Attorney Glen Googins will be conducting the training.
This should be an interesting session.
Recently, Googins was involved in an effort that an ethicist suggested wasn’t open or ethical.
Here’s what Dr. Tom Shanks said to Santa Clara News Online in an interview about efforts to get documents that the 49ers won’t share with the City about the 2026 FIFA World Cup:
“I’m really disappointed that City staff doesn’t appear to be doing its duty and acting on behalf of the residents to obtain this information. It’s been months since City Manager Jovan Grogan and City Attorney Glen Googins were directed by the City Council to get the documents. This was also a major recommendation of the Civil Grand Jury.”
Shanks is a nationally recognized ethicist and the former director of the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University. He set up Santa Clara’s award-winning ethics program decades ago.
Shanks also believes that “corruption or the appearance of corruption in Santa Clara already puts the City in the running for this decade’s most corrupt local government.”
Let’s see if Googins addresses or avoids this issue.
Googins plans to cover the following topics:
- State Open Meeting laws (the Brown Act)
- The Public Records Act
- Conflicts of Interest rules
- Gift limitation/disclosure requirements
- A variety of other rules governing the conduct of local public officials
- A general presentation on the City’s own ethics rules