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[whitespace] I'll be Back: Shortly after losing her bid for county supervisor, Dolly Sandoval is now looking at a spot on the Cupertino City Council.

Public Eye

Dolly Will Never Go Away

IT'S BEEN A LITTLE MORE than a month since Dolly Sandoval lost her bid for county supervisor by two percentage points to Palo Alto Mayor Liz Kniss. Since then she's cleaned out her campaign office and taken a brief vacation to Hawaii. Having enjoyed a little rest, the ambitious Foothill-DeAnza Community College District trustee is now eagerly assessing her next career opportunity. Eye has learned that Cupertino City Councilman John Statton plans to announce his resignation on Jan. 16, almost a year before his term ends, and take residence in San Rafael. Statton's city council colleagues will then have to decide whether to hold a special election to replace him, leave the seat vacant or appoint an interim successor until the scheduled November 2001 election. Special elections cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, so that seems a financially unwise choice considering Statton didn't have that much time left on his four year term. The council's more likely to appoint someone, which is where Sandoval comes in. On paper, Ms. Dolly would seem to have a decent chance to be appointed to fill the vacant slot. After all, all four of the remaining council members--Don Burnett, Michael Chang, Sandy James and Richard Lowenthal--endorsed their fellow Cupertinian in her failed quest for supervisor. And should she get appointed, Sandoval would enjoy running in November as the incumbent, albeit a nonelected one. But there's a small hitch: Sandoval would need to resign from the Foothill-DeAnza board because she couldn't hold both offices at the same time. "I'm mulling it over at the moment," Sandoval confirms. "I'm looking at my options." It all may be a moot point anyway. Mayor Sandy James tells Eye that if she had her druthers she'd either leave the seat vacant or appoint Orrin Mahoney, who ran for ocuncil in 1998. From a political standpoint, semi-retired campaign consultant Rich Robinson, a Cupertino resident, thinks it's a no-brainer--being on the city council would give Sandoval greater credibility on land use, housing and transportation issues. "It's all about profile," Robinson argues. "City council is more high-profile [than being a community college trustee]. It would be a great move for Dolly."

Starting Over

Finally, the 2000 general election is over. Now the campaign season for the 2002 primary can finally begin. Witness the active behind-the-scenes efforts to succeed Assemblygal Elaine Alquist (D-Santa Clara) in two years after she's termed out of office: Santa Clara Councilboy Rod Diridon Jr., who just got re-elected to his city post last month, is already busy soliciting endorsements from big shots like San Jose Mayor Ron Gonzales and Silicon Valley Manufacturing Group henchdude Carl Guardino (the latter of whom regularly attends the Rodster's annual Halloween bash). Although he's been working the circuit in private, Junior is being coy in public about his shameless ladder-climbing plans. "I'm thinking about it [running for Assembly]," Diridon acknowledges, "but it's a little premature now. ... When I can give you more than that, I'll give you a call. But for now I think I'll leave it at that." Meanwhile, Mountain View City Councilwoman Sally Lieber is also hitting her speed dial, telling people she'd like to chat with them about running for the 22nd Assembly District seat. Other politicos also said to be looking at the seat are Sunnyvale councilmembers Jack Walker and Manny Valerio. Valerio, by the by, will coincidentally increase his regional profile next year when he takes over as board chairman of the Valley Transportation Authority, the agency overseeing BART's extension to San Jose. ... Another little twist, observes voter-data vendor Doug Winslow is that because of reapportionment, the Bay Area will probably lose a seat in the Assembly (with another one being added in SoCal). According to Winslow, either the 22nd District or the 19th District, currently represented by powerful Lou Papan (D-Millbrae), will get erased when the districts are redrawn in the next year. And since Papan's daughter is already raising dough to succeed her pop, Winslow suspects the 22nd District will ultimately get snubbed.

Office Space

Technically speaking, Rep. Tom Campbell (R-Campbell) is still this area's elected representative in the House until Jan. 3 when Democrat Mike Honda is sworn in. But District 15 residents will have a helluva time reaching their congressman for the remainder of the holiday season. Campbell's crew vacated the district office on Campisi Way in Campbell last week, leaving behind only a recorded telephone message saying, "Unfortunately, this office is closed at this time and we are unable to directly assist you." Callers are then instructed to call Honda's campaign office or, if they must, leave a message for the Campster. Jackie Corcoran, Campbell's Chief of Staff, blames the early closure on the General Services Administration, which wanted Campbell moved out before the end of the year. Corcoran assures Eye that district foot-soldiers will be available for casework through Dec. 31 "if there was an emergency." ... Hondanistas are already grumbling about having to dip into their office budget to buy new computer equipment because Campbell's outdated hardware didn't meet the GSA's minimum technology standards. "I have no PC; I have nothing. Well, I think I might have a printer. It's horrible," complains staff chieftain Jennifer Van der Heide. ... Corcoran, however, didn't see what all the fuss was about. "They [the computers] were perfectly adequate for our purposes," she sniffs.

Right Away, Mr. Harris

They say politics makes strange bedfellows. Well, these days, so does the news business. This column and this paper are now being printed by our daily competitor, the San Jose Mercury News. A few weeks ago, Metro's longtime printer, Pizazz, became financially insolvent, forcing the paper to look at other options. As a temporary solution, the San Francisco Chronicle printed Metro for two weeks. Metro management started talking to Merc reps (who had approached Metro offering its printshop services a few years ago). Eye promises there will be no change in Metro's editorial content because of the new printing arrangement--readers can continue to expect to find both challenging journalism and community-enhancing classified ads for X-rated phone sex with horny housewives and Asian schoolgirls.

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From the December 21-27, 2000 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 2000 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

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