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Top Stories: Sept. 14, 2009
Wet's Permit Pulled; Health Care 'Debate' Comes to Silicon Valley; Cupertino Councilman in Trouble in San Jose
by Staff on Sep 14, 2009
YouTube Video Leads to Club Wet Closure
Club Wet has a long reputation for violence, but this time someone managed to capture it on video and post it to Youtube. Less than five seconds into the clip, a bottle can be heard smashing, and within 25 seconds someone is seen getting punched in the face. It takes less than a minute for a security guard involved in the ruckus to pull out a tazer, and things deteriorate from there.
After seeing the video, the SJPD decided to yank the plug on the club for the second time in as many months. The club temporarily lost its license last July after a stabbing on the dance floor. According to the terms of the current closure, the club cannot have a deejay or dancing for the next thirty days.
According to the Club's spokesman Tom Saggau, at no time did the violence get out of control, and the entire melee lasted just three and a half minutes. "No one was hurt. No one was arrested," he said. The police disagree, saying that two female employees were hurt, but declined to file a report.
Read More at San Jose Inside.
Read More at Watch Dog Silicon Valley.
Read More at KCBS.
SJ Landlords Turn on Cupertino Councilman
For more than a year, landlords in San Jose's low-income Hoffman Via Monte neighborhood have been complaining about how one of their own, Gilbert Wong, neglects his properties and fails to address problems with his tenants. Wong owns at least five properties in the area, while his father owns another seven, but his first priority seems to be Cupertino, where he is a city council member.
Matters came to a head on September 3, when a group of landlords attempted to deliver a letter of complaint to the Cupertino city clerk. According to these landlords, Wong had refused to respond to them when approached through informal channels, so they decided to take more formal steps. When a reporter asked him about the letter, Wong responded instantly, and met with a representative of the other property owners that same day.
While the details of the meeting have yet to be released, Wong later said that he agreed to work with the other landlords to address the problem of overflowing trash bins. He was, however, adamant that he had not agreed to make any other repairs on his buildings or to address the problem of unruly tenants. While he admits that his tenants are "subpar," he blames the problem on current housing discrimination laws.
Wong has a long history of confrontation with local leaders in San Jose. In 2008, City Council member Nancy Pyle met with Wong in an effort to work out differences between him and the city, but no changes were implemented as a result of the meeting.
Read More at The Mercury News.
Firefighters Battling Goodwill Blaze
Firefighters worked in the early morning to get a fire under control at the Goodwill donation center at 3020 Alum Rock Avenue. The fire, which was first reported at 3:30am, has apparently caused significant damage to the building, which once housed Reed's Sports Shop. According to the SJFD, one of the major problems facing the firefighters is the large quantity of wooden furniture at the site, which is stoking the flames.
Read More at The Mercury News.
Health Care Debate Continues in Santa Clara County
After thousands of people opposed to healthcare reform marched on the Capitol this Saturday, Congressman Mike Honda hosted a town hall meeting on Sunday at Santa Clara University, where he heard reform supporters tell the other side of the story. In his district at least, voters were overwhelmingly supportive of a public option, with one participant saying: "I think without the public option health care reform is like a car without wheels." Addressing opponents of the public option, Honda said: "No one's going to force anybody to choose the public option."
A more raucous debate took place later at the Los Gatos Jewish Community Center. While the 400 people who managed to get in tended to support reform, there was also a vocal minority of opponents. But the real confrontation took place outside among some 125 people who could not get in to the event. Supporters and opponents lined both sides of the entrance, chanting slogans and taunting their opponents. Police dispersed the crowd after about an hour.
One of the focal points of the debate was providing treatment to illegal immigrants. A report issued by California's Department of Health Care Services estimates that 768,400 undocumented workers will receive healthcare this year, funded by state and federal taxes. The report continued that the total cost for this treatment would be in excess of $1 billion. California is home to one-quarter of the country's total illegal immigrant population, approximately 2.8 million people.
On the other hand, healthcare proponents argue that the cost of treating illegal immigrants is grossly exaggerated. A spokeswoman for the Valley Medical Center in Santa Clara County said that only 250-300 illegal immigrants are admitted to the hospital every year under federal laws that forbid doctors from providing service to people who show up in its emergency room. This constitutes just 3 percent of all of the hospital's emergency room admissions, which total about 10,000 per year.
Read More at ABC 7.
Read More at the Mercury News.
Read More at the Contra Costa Times.
Economy to Blame for Library Computer Failure
Santa Clara County's library system is experiencing computer overload. Over the past few months, more and more people are turning to the public computer system to find and apply for jobs, resulting in slower service. While the library plans to introduce a high-capacity fiber optics network to handle the load—and to ease the strain caused by an increasing number of web videos and high res graphics—officials claims that this could take as long as six months to implement. For now, at least, the library has turned off about one-third of their computers. While this may mean longer lines, it is hoped that it will also mean that users need less time to access the sites they need.
Read More at KLIV.
by Staff on Sep 14, 2009
A YouTube video of a melee in Club Wet Friday night prompted SJPD to pull the nightclub's entertainment permit.