Ohlone sees support for big bond

I wrote a story for today’s paper that Ohlone College is considering a new bond initiative in November, 2010; and that a survey it commissioned showed that 58 percent of those queried were likely to support it — more than the 55 percent needed for passage.

That was surprising.

For one, it was only eight years ago that voters approved a $150 million bond for Ohlone, which paid for the new Newark Campus and other projects.

Two, bond measures benefit from a sexy project to sell voters, like a new campus, a seismically safe hospital or new fire stations so men making more than $100k per year don’t suffer the indignity of listening to each other snore in buildings prone to collapsing in earthquakes.

But Ohlone’s bond has no sex appeal. The research firm asked voters to gauge what they’d like to see addressed in a facilities bond. The top item was proper ventilation in science classrooms to allow safe use of chemicals. zzzzzzzzzzzzz. Not exactly the stuff of punchy campaign fliers. Maybe, they’ll have a glossy photo of a kid wearing a lab coat and a gas mask.

Then again Fremont residents, at least, seem to love bond measures almost as much as they hate taxes, so maybe it will pass.


No sex clubs for Fremont

Not too long ago, a gent came to City Hall and asked where he could open up a sex club. On Thursday, the Planning Commission will set in motion a new law that will allow the city to respond, “Nowhere.”

Current city law would allow for sex clubs and other not so hotsy totsy businesses in the City Center right near City Hall.

The new law would outlaw sex clubs, but would keep the current restrictions on adult book stores, strip clubs, etc.

Fremont doesn’t have a strip club that I know about. There is an adult bookstore in Irvington, and you can get a similar merchandise in a couple of the smoke shops around town. People go to sex clubs to have sex with other people at the sex club.

Speak of the devil, I just got a press release from an SF club called Infusion Lounge. It’s sad that Fremont residents have to go all the way to San Francisco for a “provocative unisex bathroom” experience.

Continue Reading


Union City Council Race heats up

This is my first ever airplane wi-fi experience and my first blog post from 30,000 feet. Somehow, I doubt my niece and nephew will be impressed. Anyway, on to the post.

 Gary Singh is running for Union City Council next year. He’s heard the field is up to five candidates already, which is probably because three council members are getting termed out.

I ended up writing a lot of stories that involved Singh when I covered Union City.  It’s a long story, but his business was poised to get $600k to help develop a new auto row to replace the one that is now Avalon Square.

We at the Argus didn’t think that was Kosher, and Union City ended changing things a bit. I never thought that Singh was angling for public money. Rather it seemed that a prominent public leader was angling to make sure Singh’s business effort succeeded.

I think we’ll have a Union City election story coming up soon.

http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4176/is_20060710/ai_n16524963/   (Note: Mayor Green didn’t get all of his cars services by Singh and he didn’t accompany him to the Planning Commission meeting)




A creamery not named Cloverdale

Cloverdale Creamery was a big deal to a lot of Fremont lifers. The Bauhofers aren’t bringing it back, but Planning Commissioner Dirk Lorenz is opening a facsimile at his flower shop near the corner of Fremont Boulevard and Thornton Avenue. The flower shop is moving to its old location down Fremont Boulevard.

“The Creamery” is scheduled to debut next spring, Lorenz said. It’ll have a menu similar to Cloverdale’s.


Niles residents contend they’re not contentious

niles town plazaMy story Wednesday on the new Niles Town Plaza didn’t go over so well. The headline, which I didn’t write, really bombed. Niles people do not like to be referred to as “contentious,” except for a few who don’t care.

Several people on the Niles internet chat group took a break from recommending podiatrists, unloading their scrap metal, and trying to find homes for unwanted kittens to talk about my story.

Most thought I was too negative, which  is hogwash, but, oh well. One person didn’t want to “embarrass me” by posting his/her displeasure on the site, so he/she sent me an email, which was very polite. The email follows: Continue Reading


Fremont looks poised to ban Styrofoam food packaging

styroLast year when Councilmember Bob Wieckowski pushed for a Styrofoam and plastic shopping bag ban in Fremont, he secured just one vote on the council: his own.

But later this month, he’s bring up the Styrofoam packaging ban again, and it looks like he’s got the votes to get it passed. Both Anu Natarajan and Bill Harrison talked this week like they are pretty close to getting on board. Natarajan said there’s less chance of the city having to fend off a lawsuit over a ban and Harrison said he mostly was concerned about the implementation date, which Wieckowski proposed for Jan. 2011.

green featherBoth council members are supporting Wieckowski in his run for state Assembly against Garrett Yee. I asked them if their change of heart could be tied to the race. Maybe they want to give Wieckowski a green feather in his cap as the race heats up? They said that wasn’t the case.