Video stirs emotions in Burgos Medina-Fugazi campaign for council

You can read today’s story here.

The video in question:

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Capsule look at some of Tuesday’s City Council agenda

The city’s second meeting of the month is Tuesday (Sept. 23). View the agenda here. 

Here’s a look at a few things that will be happening:

* The council is asked to approve spending nearly $50,000 to repair rain damage at City Hall. If you remember the downpour at the Asparagus Festival (and, actually, even if you don’t remember it), that’s when the damage occurred. It figures the one time it rained here in a decade, it would cost the city $50,000.

* The council is asked to affirm Mayor Anthony Silva’s appointments of five to the Handicapped Access Board of Appeals: Don Aguillard, Charles Faraci, Dennis Yamamoto, Jim Hanley and Pat Hague.

* The Council is asked to adopt a resolution declaring a Stage 1 Water Shortage Emergency in response to a Governor’s Proclamation.

* The Council is asked to develop a procedure for replacing outgoing Councilwoman Kathy Miller when she heads to the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors at the end of 2014.

* City staff is asking for council direction on the use of $350,000 in Strategic Priorities funding. Seven priorities have been identified: Public safety, fiscal sustainability, organizational development, economic development, youth, infrastructure, and improving the city’s image.

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Planning Commission: Neighborhoods

The Planning Commission heard tonight a proposal from Community Services Deputy Director Forrest Ebbs on a proposed neighborhood map for Stockton. For background, read the staff report. The proposed map is here.

Ebbs began by going through the proposed neighborhoods, which are outlined in the staff report. Ebbs’ department also is including three proposed “expansion areas” for Stockton: the far north/northwest corner of the city; Bear Creek East, West and North project areas; and the Mariposa Lakes project area, which is in southeast Stockton.

“We anticipate urbanization of these areas,” Ebbs said.

The goal of the city as it amends its General Plan is to create complete neighborhoods, meaning that a determination be made of where more infrastructure is needed, more safe routes for schoolchildren, more markets, more retail, more housing. In so doing, the need to drive to get places would be reduced and the environment would improve. At least that’s the plan.

Read More »

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UOP Business Forecasting Center: Bankruptcy trial outcome ‘very uncertain’

You can read the one-page article here.

An excerpt:

Judge Klein may confirm Stockton’s plan on October  1, but what happens if he does not? The Judge could find that the City’s plan discriminates unfairly against Franklin, and he may also reach a conclusion that opens the door for Stockton to reduce pensions but he can’t compel the City to go through that door. Even if the Judge gives Stockton an opening to impair pensions, City leaders have made it clear that they have no desire to go in that direction. It is most likely that the City would simply amend its plan to offer Franklin a repayment of around 50%, roughly proportional to the recovery from fixed payments in the City’s settlement on its over $100 million in unsecured pension bonds. The City would have a strong case that such an offer is fair, and would hopefully be able to still avoid a long and costly court battle over the pension issue.

Regardless of the decision on October 1, the bankruptcy case is costing the City more time and money than it originally planned when it put forward its plan and the City’s voter approved the ¾ cent sales tax last November known as Measure A. The City continues to have problems retaining its experienced police officers, has not yet been able to increase its police force with Measure A funds, and is facing pressure to increase compensation to bolster its recruitment and retention efforts. As a result, it appears that Stockton will have a difficult time increasing its police force by all of the 120 officers promised to voters in the Measure A campaign.

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City Council candidate forum

The San Joaquin Taxpayers Association will host a forum Sept. 25 featuring the Stockton City Council candidates. The forums will start at 6 p.m. that day at Central United Methodist Church, 3700 Pacific Avenue.

For more information, call David Renison at (209) 608-7693 or visit 

Appearing will be Elbert Holman and Rick Grewal (District 1); Gene Acevedo and Susan Lofthus (District 3); and Dyane Burgos Medina and Christina Fugazi (District 5).

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City Council live: Council comments


Mayor Anthony Silva on the smell downtown: “You can’t walk down there without needing to throw up.” Silva also said he is discouraged by this. He also asked city staff to listen to elected officials or let them know if they are only “cheerleaders.” If they are only cheerleaders, he said, “What’s the point of running for office?” He also said he is forming on anti-bullying committee.

Elbert Holman: spoke of recently attending California cities conference. “Cities are in trouble in California.” Said cities need to work with Sacramento elected officials.

Dyane Burgos Medina went to the same conference, as did Kathy Miller, who is not here tonight. She spoke of sessions about restructuring debt, and also sessions on things other cities do like mobile City Halls; a robot to teach kids about recycle; creatively collaborating with universities; economic development.

Paul Canepa: He spoke about his support for body cameras for police officers. He also spoke of homelessness and asked what the city is doing about related issues and about services that are available. He also said the audit committee, which met yesterday, is doing well and that it is going to be on time with its report this year after years of delinquency.

Moses Zapien: He said things have improved with a recycling center in his district, in answer to one of the issues Canepa raised re: homelessness.

Meeting over. Already.

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City Council live: Anti-trafficking resolution adopted

Michael Tubbs, who proposed the item: “These are our daughters, our sons who are victims of human trafficking. It makes no sense in the 21st century in America that our daughters are being trafficked and enslaved. I find that reprehensible. … It makes no sense that our daughters can’t walk the streets.” He said he would like to support establishment of a family justice center.

Dyane Burgos Medina: “Our foster youth are so vulnerable. They come from families of modest means with the lure of fast money.”

Elbert Holman: “It’s something that isn’t new. It’s coming to the forefront now. Resolutions don’t stop it. Resolutions say this is something this community doesn’t want to tolerate. I urge you to take heed and report what you see and give the ones we give the ability to to address this problem. This is the worst form of indignity that can be put on a person.”

Moses Zapien: ”It’s an issue I see prominently in my district on the east side. It’s an incredibly complex issue.”

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City Council live — Public comment

No closed-session action was announced; Kathy Miller is not here tonight.

Roy Hoggard: “We have start saving water. We’re running out of water.”

Pastor Bud Locke Jr.: In support of an anti-human trafficking resolution the council will approve in a little while.

Marguerite Hawes on the same topic: “Exploitation is no respecter of age. We’re not going to stay silent.”

Public comment done.

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Mark Lewis put on leave from Chowchilla job

Mark Lewis, the man who bought Stockton a $1-million (Neil) Diamond ring, was fired as Stockton city manager in 2006. In his latest incarnation in Chowchilla, Lewis has now been put on leave.

From the Fresno Bee:

“Lewis is named in (two) complaints, one from a former employee and one from a current employee. Each worker says she felt fear, emotional distress and anxiety over the potential loss of her job while working under Lewis’ supervision, among other claims. Each filing seeks damages that exceed $10,000, according to the complaints.

“In one of the claims for damages filed two weeks ago, Sharon Briscoe, who served as the city’s finance director, says Lewis was giving the City Council information that was untrue and mischaracterized the city’s financial situation.”

Here’s the full story.

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Demographic breakdown of Stockton police

As reported today, the Stockton Police Department swore in one new officer and three academy-bound trainees yesterday in its ongoing bid to begin hiring Measure A officers. As noted in the story, one of the trainees is black, bringing to eight the number of black officers and trainees among Stockton’s 363 police officers.

Blacks represent only 2 percent of the force in a city of 300,000 where 12 percent of the population is black.

Here’s a look, provided by the police department, of the force’s demographics, along with city figures from the U.S. Census:

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