City Council meeting in San Jose cleared out by police after protest over Google land sale

ByKate Larsen via KGO logo
Wednesday, December 5, 2018
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There was more than four hours of public comment about selling land in in San Jose to Google.

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- There were more than four hours of public comment about selling land in San Jose to Google.

There were occasional outbursts throughout the council meeting, but then a very loud and persistent group of demonstrators got everyone kicked out. In an effort to get through all the public comment, Mayor Sam Liccardo warned people that if they shouted or clapped, they would be escorted outside.

At 9:00 p.m., San Jose police, which had a heavy presence at City Hall throughout the night because of rumors about a disruption, ushered everyone out of chambers. Then about 20 officers stayed behind to handle eight demonstrators who chained themselves to their seats. Eventually, police used bolt cutters to cut their chains off and arrest them.

But the protests continued just outside chambers.

Many San Jose residents opposed to the land sale are concerned about losing their housing to soaring housing costs. They also want more answers from Google about what exactly they plan to build.

The controversy is over Google's proposal to spend more than $110-million on land in Downtown San Jose near Diridon Station and SAP Center.

Google wants to develop the 50 or so acres into a mixed-use office, residential and retail village. There is the potential for 25,000 new jobs with the Google complex. And a lot of people are in favor of the project.

The council was expected to approve the land sale-- they resumed their meeting after the arrests about an hour later.

Stay with ABC7 News for more on this developing story.