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This year’s Cupertino State of the City address will be given March 1 instead of late January as Mayor Savita Vaidhyanathan will be attending a national mayor’s conference in Washington, D.C. The annual lunchtime event—historically held on Wednesdays in conjunction with a Rotary Club of Cupertino meeting at the Quinlan Community Center—gives the mayor an opportunity to update residents on everything Cupertino in a low-key setting. Topics such as the economy, private and public development, city finances, local schools and city programs are often highlighted. Public safety awards for local fire and police are also given out.
The event for years has been co-sponsored by the Cupertino Chamber of Commerce.Rotary club members and city officials say the partnership with Rotary and the Chamber has been beneficial and saved the city money, According to Rick Kitson, public information officer with the Chamber of Commerce and the city’s former public affairs director, the Chamber’s sponsorship of the mayor’s annual address has been a tradition for more than 30 years, “As it has been practiced over three decades, the collaborative format for the State of the City becomes the capezio dance sneakers expression of what is best about Cupertino,” he said, “This is a collaborative community, and our municipality reflects that collaboration in a central value of the community, Cupertino is not a full-service city, Most of the services that are provided that people associate with the city are done in collaboration with other organizations and groups.”..
However, after an election that saw a surge in residents’ interest in local politics and city business, a few residents this month have been questioning if some changes should be made to the annual event. Suggestions have included moving the event to the evening and to another public venue and nixing the optional lunch that can run $20-$30. There has been a request for the address to become a strictly city-sponsored event, rather having the Rotary and Chamber affiliations. Resident Liana Crabtree recently sent an email to the city council requesting the city consider holding the event in a different public location without the paid meal component.
“Many Cupertinians have inflexible daytime schedules or limited discretionary funds that prevent them from attending a paid, civic function held during the day, Yet, these residents care about their local government and would like to be able to participate in events such as the State of the City address,” her email read, Newly elected City Councilman Steven Scharf echoed those suggestions, “I agree with the proposal by residents that the city should hold an official city-sponsored State of the City address in the evening, at no charge,” he said in an capezio dance sneakers email to this newspaper.Resident Phyllis Dickstein told this newspaper that the current format of the address might inadvertently send the wrong message to the community..
“Some people had noted that this was being held as a luncheon and there were fees for it and it was in the middle of the day; I felt these points were valid,” she said. Dickstein believes the event should be “directed toward the general public”. “When you have something called State of the City and it’s sponsored by Chamber of Commerce and Rotary, the implication is that you’re reporting to members of the business community. The public can attend, but the implication is that they’re just listeners-in, that they’re not the audience, and I think this is wrong.”.
Dickstein said she would like to see the event held in the civic center’s community hall, Crabtree said that some other residents have suggested holding it at a high school gym, The city of Sunnyvale for example recently made changes to its mayor’s state of the city address, It is held outdoors on Saturdays, in Washington Park in 2015 and the city’s civic center in 2016, The most recent event in July saw various city departments come together to make the event a larger, family-friendly affair with capezio dance sneakers food trucks, tours of the civic center and library, “go green” activities, Bollywood dance performances, and presentation of its Community Awards, The event also had an interactive app where residents could collect discounts from local businesses, Activities for children included foot golf, crafts, balloon art and performing magicians..
Exact costs could not be given, but Cupertino’s State of the City event can be pricey. Hung Wei, a Fremont Union High School District board trustee and Rotary Club member, said the collaboration between the three sponsoring entities saves the city, specifically in staff time. She said Rotary and the Chamber often lose money on the event, but budget far in advance. “The Chamber of Commerce said they would host the State of the City address because the city did not want to spend a lot of money on things like this,” she said. “Then the event became so big that the Chamber couldn’t handle it themselves, so they asked Rotary if they would like to co-sponsor it.”.
City spokesman Brian Babcock said the capezio dance sneakers city makes the Cupertino Room at the Quinlan Center available for the event, sets up the room and videotapes the roughly 45-minute event, According to the city website, the room can accommodate 240 people in a banquet format, and the adjoining Social Room can accommodate up to 80 people, Everything else is coordinated by the Chamber and Rotary, namely decorations and catering arrangements and costs, Kitson also said that most of the work done by Rotary and Chamber is done on a volunteer basis..