New community advisory commission for Google grants in San Jose, CA

How would you invest Google’s money in San Jose?


City Council voted in August to create a publicly-run committee to distribute Google grants.

Photo via @sustainablesnowleopard

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On Tues., August 16, City Council voted unanimously to create a new 13-member commission that will distribute $155 million in Google grants to local communities. 💰

We’re breaking down the commission’s goals + how to get involved.

Google Rendering

The Downtown West development

Rendering via Google

💵 Where’d this money come from?

It’s not everyday that a tech giant decides to move into town. In case you missed it, Google’s Downtown West development was approved last year — which will transform a huge area between Downtown + Midtown.

The project will include:

  • 7.3 million sqft of offices
  • Up to 5,900 housing units
  • 15 acres of plazas + green spaces
  • 500,000 sqft of retail, art space, hotels, and more

As part of this huge move, Google agreed to invest up to $200 million to minimize community displacement.

🏛️ What’s this commission?

Get ready — the name’s a bit of a mouthful: The Community Stabilization and Opportunity Pathways Fund Commission.

This commission’s job will be to distribute Google’s investment to communities at risk of being priced out of San Jose — as outlined in Google’s Social Infrastructure Plan. Funding will focus on areas including affordable housing, small business support, occupational skills training, scholarships, and more.

Commission members must be San Jose residents or workers + reflect our city’s diversity. They will receive a $200/month stipend across two consecutive four-year terms. Of the 13 members:

  • Five must have had lived experience with homelessness
  • Eight must have professional experience within affordable housing, mental health, health care, STEAM education, or other community services

The commission will also include non-voting members from city government, Google, and major project funders.

✋ How can I be involved?

Applications to serve on this commission are now open, and must be submitted by 12 p.m. on Mon., Oct. 24. Set aside 1-2 hours to complete the application. 📝

A virtual meeting will take place on Thurs., Oct. 6 at 6:30 p.m. to address application questions.

The City hopes to seat commission members by December. The group will then develop a five-year strategic plan next year, and by 2024, Google will deliver the first $15 million in grants.

We’ll be updating you through this process.