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Angelo "AJ" Pasciuti

Running for: 

Council District 6

Campaign Website: 

1) PAC*SJ recently released its second annual “Endangered Eight” list of the most threatened historic places in San José. Which of these places (including those from our 2022 “Endangered Eight” of which some remain endangered) most resonates with you personally? Which of these would you use the power of your elected office to address, and how? 

If elected, my primary focus would be on addressing the preservation and revitalization of the Sam’s Downtown Feed building, Milligan’s Lot, and Foreman’s Arena. These landmarks hold immense cultural and historical significance not just for District 6 but for our entire community. Our district boasts a wealth of historical houses and structures we have diligently safeguarded over the years. Prioritizing the preservation of these iconic sites honors their historical importance and contributes to enhancing our local neighborhoods, fostering their growth and prosperity.

2) Is there a historic place or preservation issue not on our 2022 or 2023 “Endangered Eight” lists that you would nominate to be added? If so, what solutions would you offer as an elected official to address the issue/threat?

The Western Appliance sign on San Carlos Street represents a crucial relic of San Jose's postwar history. If not carefully preserved, it risks being lost or harmed, similar to the fate suffered by the Orchard Supply Hardware sign in 2018.

3) In the past three years alone, at least six vacant historic buildings in San José have been lost to fire, and many more have suffered from chronic neglect and vandalism. Often, these properties were left vacant after former tenants were displaced in anticipation of future development that never materialized.  How would you propose more effective code enforcement and security measures to encourage better stewardship and to prevent the continued loss of our historic resources to neglect? What additional solutions would you propose to address these systemic problems?  

As previously mentioned, our district boasts numerous historical homes and buildings that have been safeguarded over time. However, we are also witnessing an increasing number of developers and companies exploiting lenient enforcement of vacancy laws. To address this, I will focus on fortifying City policies related to vacant buildings and contemplate imposing supplementary fees on developers who promptly fail to initiate construction or maintenance. Exploring options like collaborating with the state to establish an eminent domain framework for historic buildings undergoing redevelopment is worth considering. Additionally, we could examine the potential for extra tax incentives or permit fee reimbursement if a building is completed expeditiously to deter vandalism. It's essential to explore all possible avenues for crafting innovative policy solutions to tackle these issues comprehensively. It is far less expensive to protect than it is to restore.

4) Do you believe the City should require compensatory mitigation fees and/or surety bonds from developers who request and receive entitlements to alter or demolish historic resources?  If such policies are instituted and enforced, how would you like to see those funds directed? 

While we cannot put a price tag on history, I support the notion of considering compensatory mitigation fees from developers as a means to counterbalance the consequences of losing or altering historical buildings. If such a measure were to be implemented, I would advocate for the majority of these fees to be allocated to preserving other historic structures. Additionally, I would collaborate with the Office of Economic Development and Cultural Affairs to explore optimal ways of utilizing these funds for historical preservation and maintenance.

5) The City has long acknowledged that its Historic Resources Inventory-- a citywide survey of historic sites intended to proactively guide development decisions-- is incomplete and out-of-date. Do you support increased City funding and staffing levels to ensure that the HRI is an up-to-date and effective planning tool for communities and developers alike?

I support investigating possibilities for augmenting funding and staffing for HRI. However, it's essential to acknowledge that we are approaching a challenging budget year with numerous tough financial choices ahead. One potential avenue to explore involves identifying additional federal or state grants and funding sources that can be allocated for this purpose. We should also consider finding efficiencies with commissions with mutual interests where possible to support HRI. I'm open to exploring innovative solutions to enhance our funding prospects.

6) San José has yet to receive final approval for its State-mandated Housing Element, and is therefore currently subject to the “Builder’s Remedy” law requiring streamlined approval of otherwise non-conforming residential development projects. How would you help ensure that citizens continue to have a voice in developments that might threaten the character and livability of their neighborhoods, particularly if there are historic resources at risk? 

I intend to assign a dedicated staff member to handle permit and building-related issues, providing residents with a direct point of contact for addressing development concerns promptly. Additionally, I plan to introduce "Walking Wednesdays," during which my team and I will walk through our neighborhoods every Wednesday to engage with residents and listen to their concerns. This initiative will allow us to gather feedback directly from our community and observe historical buildings and ongoing work to mitigate the potential adverse effects of the "Builder's Remedy." With the recent state approval of the City's Housing Element, I am optimistic that we can mitigate many of the negative impacts previously anticipated due to the delay.

7) City park lands are a critical resource for the people of San José and are potential receiver sites for distinctive historic buildings that must be relocated to make way for new developments.  Would you support this as a mitigation measure for new developments with historic resources that would otherwise be demolished? How do you envision that these resources could be best utilized within the parks for the benefit of the public?

I am receptive to the idea of relocating historic buildings to our parks, which would serve the dual purpose of preserving and enriching our parks with culture and diverse experiences for residents. To make this a reality, we must explore creative financing avenues, such as considering additional permit fees and expanding partnerships with organizations like History San Jose, specializing in this field. Another avenue worth exploring is public-private partnerships, where entities can contribute to funding historical building placements within parks.

Close coordination with the Parks, Recreation, and Neighborhood Services Department is essential to ensure maximum benefits for our communities. This coordination will involve aligning potential park additions with their master and strategic plans, securing sufficient funding, and establishing a plan for the meaningful and educational inclusion of historical buildings while ensuring their long-term maintenance and staffing.


8) In 2022 California passed SB9, which allows by-right redevelopment of up to four new units on most R1 (single-family-zoned) parcels statewide, but exempted historic properties, historic districts, and R2 (duplex-zoned) neighborhoods from eligibility. In 2024, City Council will consider expanding SB9-type entitlements to include historic properties and R2 districts. Do you believe this type of development is appropriate for historic homes and older neighborhoods? Why or why not?


I firmly believe that we should aim to construct a diverse range of housing options that cater to the varying needs of our community members while preserving the unique character of our neighborhoods. This entails developing single-family homes and multi-unit buildings as part of our housing strategy.

9) What role do you believe that historic preservation should play in creating and sustaining a vibrant and culturally diverse future for San José? Is there a particular project or effort you have undertaken or would propose to undertake--either professionally or personally-- that best embodies your vision for historic preservation in San José?

Understanding our past is essential for charting our future. Providing people with tangible connections to history is one of the most effective ways to achieve this. By safeguarding homes and other historic structures, we can delve deeper into our city's rich history and gain insights into how it has influenced our present, acknowledging its strengths and weaknesses. I greatly admire the diverse and continuously evolving culture in our city. Through these preservation endeavors, we can make learning opportunities accessible to all our residents, fostering a deeper appreciation for our shared heritage.

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