Kim Walesh

Mercury News Comes Back Downtown with Sweet Deal

The Mercury News will return to downtown San Jose, the newspaper announced Thursday in a deliciously meta article of self-praise. But the adulation of the expected move isn’t the real takeaway from this story. The real takeaway is a sweetheart parking deal.

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Councilman Kansen Chu Charges Expensive Yosemite Retreat to the City

All work and no play makes Kansen Chu a dull councilmember. Back in March, the representative for San Jose’s Berryessa district (and 2014 State Assembly candidate) took a trip with his wife—on the city’s dime—to Yosemite National Park to attend the 22nd Annual Ahwahnee Conference for Local Elected Officials. What initially caught Fly’s attention was the conference, titled “Building Livable Communities: New Strategies for a New Age,” was sponsored by a who’s who of who-cares-about-the-environment: PG&E, San Diego Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison Company and the Southern California Gas Company. But a closer look at Councilman Chu’s expense report shows he barely attended the event, despite shelling out $809.54 of taxpayer dollars.

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Council to Discuss Developer Incentives at First Meeting of New Fiscal Year

Since slashing construction fees for high-rise development in downtown, two towers have broken ground, including the $135 million 23-story project at One South Market. Hoping to spur more nearby development, the City Council on Tuesday will consider whether to vote in a similar half-off discount for buildings of any size as long as they create jobs. Other items on the agenda for the first council meeting of the 2013-114 fiscal year include another look at building restriction height around the airport, a potential study of the city’s sewer system and an update on the city’s graffiti abatement contract.

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