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Gilroy City Hall. Photo: Erik Chalhoub
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The Gilroy City Council on July 5 unanimously agreed to slightly update the text of a measure headed to the November ballot.

The measure, which aims to modernize the city’s construction bidding process, will now include a line that prioritizes placing notices in the newspaper.

The updated text requires the city to publish its construction bids in a newspaper of general circulation, “if available” at least seven days before the bids open. It doesn’t prohibit the city from also publishing online and in trade journals.

The amendment was proposed following concerns from the Gilroy Dispatch that the measure, as it was originally drafted, would reduce transparency in the city’s bidding process.

City Administrator Jimmy Forbis said the weekly print schedule of the Dispatch may not always be practical to publish bids when the city is facing tight deadlines.

“There have been claims that this was an attempt by the city to go into the darkness or circumvent public knowledge,” he said. “I couldn’t argue more against that.”

Forbis said the city never had any intention of not using the Dispatch to publish bids, and the approved text amendment strikes a balance between notifying the public and prospective bidders.

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Erik Chalhoub joined Weeklys as an editor in 2019. Prior to his current position, Chalhoub worked at The Pajaronian in Watsonville for seven years, serving as managing editor from 2014-2019.

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