Here’s food for thought . . . Let’s talk turkey. Turkey Trot, that is.
Next Thursday is Thanksgiving. If you have a roof over your head, food on the table and a steady job or income, then let’s face it . . . you are blessed.
Sadly, there are several hundred thousand people in Silicon Valley – often our own neighbors – who are not so blessed.
We live in a Valley in which any given night nearly 10,000 people – including women and children – live on the streets or in our creeks.
We live in a Valley in which seniors, parents and kids make the awful choice on whether to pay their rent or afford food on any given day.
We live in a Valley in which health care is deferred or coverage is denied, as a luxury rather than the necessity that it is.
That’s why this Thanksgiving morning, I am asking you to join the Guardino family for our 12th Annual Applied Materials “Silicon Valley Turkey Trot” in downtown San Jose.
For some it’s a race, a run or a walk. For others, like me, it’s about building community and helping those in need. Whatever your motivation, sign up today. Together, if we meet our goals, we will contribute $1 million to local families in need. Go to svturkeytrot.com to register and know you have taken a step forward in helping others.
Don’t Stop at the Top . . . Much has been written and said about a “crowded ballot” facing California voters this election season. With 17 statewide initiatives, two countywide ballot measures and – depending on the City or Town you call home – more local measures as well.
So here’s my advice to my fellow voters here in Santa Clara County – “don’t stop at the top.” You may be angry and anxious about one or both of your choices for our next president. I understand. But numerous state and local choices deserve your discerning decision-making. Let me name two.
In Silicon Valley, two of our greatest concerns are the flip side of the same coin; too much traffic and a lack of homes our families can afford. That warrants a close look at Measures A and B.
Measure A is an affordable housing bond, with a principal focus on homeless housing for the estimated 7,500 people without shelter on any given night. Currently, the cost of services, shelter and public safety associated with the band-aid approach we have taken to address our homeless crisis is $500 million annually. Measure A, with a “Housing First” model, could provide safe housing and services for as many as 5,000 people currently on the streets and near our creeks.
Measure B is our traffic relief & road repair initiative, carefully crafted over years of effort with thousands of everyday citizens’ actively engaged in 48 public hearings. Built by traffic engineers and transportation directors, Measure B would provide meaningful countywide congestion relief, cost-effective transit options and a significant focus on the crumbling conditions of our local streets and roads. It’s positive impact on our economy, including local employers small and large, has earned the unanimous endorsement of all 13 Chambers of Commerce, from Palo Alto in the north to Gilroy in the south, representing tens of thousands of small and mid-sized businesses. Learn more at YesMeasureB.com
In many ways, this election season’s ugliness at the “top of the ticket” seems more like a “race to the bottom.” But when voting, make your voice heard. Join me; don’t stop at the top.