More Opinion

COMMUNITY OPINION: No Vote On Gavilan College Bond

Gavilan College failed to build a satellite campus in downtown Hollister with Measure E funds in 2016. Today, the college is asking property owners to support another bond.

This opinion was contributed by community member John Bessa. The opinions expressed do not necessarily represent BenitoLink or other affiliated contributors.

I'll begin by recognizing that Gavilan College provides an educational opportunity for individuals choosing to attend a community college.

In January of 2016, the college was in a favorable position to support local efforts to build a satellite campus on the former Leatherback property, which is close to downtown.  This  plan had strong community support from key stakeholders, the Mayor, students, and educational advocates. Unfortunately the Gavilan administration, along with the college trustees, voted down this proposal.  

Since 2004, property owners have been funding the college with Measure E funds. Over the ensuing years, the amount of bond money paid is considerable (millions). What have we gained, a building site for a potential future college campus at the intersection of Fairview and Ridgemark Drive, along with failed promises. Enough is enough. Today, Gavilan College would like San Benito property owners to assume more debt. Currently, county property owners are supporting three school measures to renovate San Benito High School.

I would encourage a no vote on the current bond proposal by Gavilan College.



BenitoLink Logo

Become a Member Today

Support your local independent news.

We work hard to give you the news and information you need. By becoming a member, you will be part of something bigger; BenitoLink, your community-supported news source.


John E. Bessa (John E. Bessa)

John E. Bessa Retired Educator


Submitted by (stacie mcgrady) on

we we’re clearly led to believe that the previous bond would result in a Hollister campus.  My bad for not reading the fine print.  But, fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me!  I will not support Gavilan College requests for additional funds.

Submitted by (Stephen Mills) on

Community colleges are one of the greatest assets California has. They allow students, especially those lacking the resources to attend four year colleges to get a first rate education at an affordable price. When the Gavilan trustees rejected the possibility of a downtown campus to buy a suburban site not adequately served by public transit, they indicated that they were primarily there to serve middle class, vehicle owning students rather than all students especially disadvantaged ones. Unless this bias changes, I am 100% behind Mr. Bessa and his urging a no vote on the upcoming bond election. Reform first, bonds later.

Submitted by (Dominic) on

The younger generations of the town need this bond and for  college courses to be offered to us in our town! A short drive or walk beats a long commute down highway 25. I am tired of all these anti education people trying to deny  us an education. Thanks John for letting the community know that you are willing to me and others educational opportunities. 

Sir, I am offended that you would label me or anyone else as anti-education because we object to being fleeced.  I support education that's why I oppose this bond.  We already paid for a campus, we put $27 million into the 2004 bond ($40 million or more with interest) for an Ed Center here that was promised to us.  Why don't you show me where it is and bring me the students who attended it?  It does not exist, Gavilan took the money and spent it in Coyote Valley which is farther away from Hollister than even the Gilroy campus.

I support education, but will not be made a fool of by Gavilan College who went to Coyote Valley to chase the big bucks, not to educate the youth of San Benito County.  Recommended reading -

OPINION: Could Gavilan College Pass Their Own Course in Social Justice?

Marty Richman

Add new comment

Add Facebook comment

Comment using your Facebook account. Facebook comments will be published on this page, and on Facebook. It will not be posted to the "Recent Comments" list on the BenitoLink front page.