GGS Meeting Minutes from Dec. 11, 2018

Called to order: 7:04 with introductions

October 16, 2018 Meeting Minutes Approved

Carolyn Gave the Treasurers Report.


Hecker Pass agri-tourism parcel:  Access point might be revised due to golf course concerns and expenses. The developer could sell the project to a builder who would then have to build according to current terms of approval as any significant changes would have to be approved by council.

Election Results: Carol Marques received second highest number of votes.

Side Discussion:  Review of historic building modifications at the Historic Heritage Committee costs a fee of $5,000 as cost recovery for the city. A plan must be presented by city staff as well as meeting arrangements, etc.  Cost Recovery Fee means that each individual project pays for itself so city does not take money out of the general fund which is tax payer money.

Side Discussion: Mayor and City Manager are considering making changes to commissions and possibly eliminating some due to difficulty filling vacancies.

High Speed Rail Update: Have decided to electrify from San Francisco to Gilroy. The EIR is delayed a year, business plan shows blended system of tracks adjacent to the UP tracks (footprint will be smaller) as they are short on money, HSR Authority is not effective at advertising/notifying the meetings.  There have been great number of staffing changes of HSR in administrative positions.


Council Study Sessions on 10/29 and 11/26: no new info except:

May move demonstration garden to Christmas Hill Park next to the red barn so the current garden location could be used as a parking lot.

Eminent Domain can occur if the city declares a building blighted, but the city would have to then use it for public benefit such as putting in a park or a parking lot, etc. 

Our discussion:  it is easy to paint, or fix missing tiles or similar signage on all downtown businesses.  CEQA supersedes all other policies.

LAFCO Future Reviews: Council decided to apply to annex the Sports Park into city, the 78 acres they already own. 

Our Discussion: The city met with the Land Trust of Santa Clara Valley Executive Director, Greg Leonard and board members Carolyn Tognetti and Kevin O’ Day.  The original estimate of cost to mitigate was changed from $245,000 an acre to $50,000 an acre. We are concerned about inaccurate information being presented to the city. Council has stated that the Sports Park is a priority.

Meeting Adjourned: 8:55 p.m.

Minutes Respectfully Submitted by Dana Wolfe

GGS General Meeting Minutes from August 7, 2018

Gilroy Growing Smarter’s own vice chair, Carol Marques, announced she will be running for city council for the 2-year term. Voters will be able to vote for one candidate for the 2-year term.
Regular observer in GGS meetings and Chair of the Planning Commission, Tom Fischer, announced he will be running for the 4-year term

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Status Of Downtown Revitalization and Economic Development

In early February, members Linda West and Carol Marques, met with the mayor, city administrator and all council members individually to discuss six action items that GGS wanted to see accomplished. We cannot take full credit for these action items as the GDBA (Gilroy Downtown Business Association) is responsible for many of these ideas. The City Council, at their annual strategic planning session this past February, addressed our concerns and set goals listed at the end of this document.

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GGS Letter to CA High Speed Rail Supporting Downtown Station

Our purpose was to preserve prime agricultural land, focus development inward and promote the revitalization of our historic downtown core. We strongly feel that compact development will benefit the City of Gilroy in many ways and that having the High Speed Rail station downtown (adjacent to our historic Caltrain depot and multi-modal transportation hub) will stimulate economic development in Gilroy through Transit Oriented Development.

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GGS General Meeting Minutes from Jan. 16, 2018

Carol Marques and Linda West have also been meeting with city staff to see what can be done about the empty buildings, façade improvements, keeping the area clean and the implementation of Main Street USA. Carol asked the group for approval for them to state that GGS also wants to see improvements made in the downtown. The unanimous consensus was that Carol and Linda could state that GGS is in agreement as they continue to meet with those involved with the downtown.

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Gilroy Growing Smarter Fall Newsletter

At a Council Study Session on Dec. 6th two topics will be discussed: the Highway 101 CHSR alignment options that have been analyzed by the High-Speed Rail Authority, and staff's comments on the three other alignments currently under consideration by the Authority (East Gilroy, Downtown Viaduct and Downtown Embankment). Staff comments do not 

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Local Open Space Advocacy Group Announces Name Change, New Leader

The Land Trust of Santa Clara Valley, formerly Silicon Valley Land Conservancy, is a nonprofit whose renaming and reorganization commenced as part of an overall plan to preserve and protect the remaining agriculture and open space in Santa Clara County, as well as the adjacent counties. The new executive director, Greg Leonard, is a local food systems crusader and grew up working his grandfather’s farm fields in the "Valley of Heart’s Delight".
LTSCV Website:
Press Release:!


GGS Letter to City Council Seeking Answers re. Great Wolf Application

Gilroy Growing Smarter is not taking a formal position on Great Wolf Lodge at this time.  However, we do have concerns that we want you to publicly address (either through the city website or social/news media) before a decision is made to enter negotiations with Great Wolf.  

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