Sat11012014

News

Spooktacular moved indoors


Due to rain, today's downtown Los Altos Halloween activities have been moved to the indoor courtyard of Play! at 170 State St. Enter from the back on the parking lot side to participate in crafts, games and fun. Activities continue until 4 p.m.

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Schools

Gardner Bullis School debuts new Grizzly Student Center

Gardner Bullis School debuts new Grizzly Student Center


Photo by Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Students line up to check books out of the library in the new Grizzly Student Center at Gardner Bullis School.

Gardner Bullis School opened its new Grizzly Student Center earlier this month, introducing a lea...

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Community

Home improvement workshop scheduled Wednesday (Oct. 29)

The County of Santa Clara is hosting a free informational workshop on 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Los Altos Hills Town Hall, 26379 Fremont Road.

The workshop will offer ways single-family homeowners can increase their homes’ energy efficiency. Eligible i...

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Comment

Off the fence: TC recommends 'yes' on N

The Town Crier initially offered no position on the controversial $150 million Measure N bond on Tuesday’s ballot. But some of the reasons we gave in our Oct. 15 editorial were, on reflection, overly critical and based on inaccurate information.

We ...

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Special Sections

Long-term solutions emerge as water conservation goes mainstream

Long-term solutions emerge as water conservation goes mainstream


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Forrest Linebarger, right, installed greywater and rainwater harvesting systems at his Los Altos Hills home.

With more brown than green visible in her Los Altos backyard, Kacey Fitzpatrick admits that she’s a little e...

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Business

Local realtors scare up money for charity

Local realtors scare up money for charity


Photo courtesy of SILVAR
Realtors Gary Campi and Jordan Legge, from left, joined Nancy Domich, SILVAR President Dave Tonna and Joe Brown to raise funds for the Silicon Valley Realtors Charitable Foundation.

Los Altos and Mountain View realtors raise...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

DAVID S. NIVISON

DAVID S. NIVISON

David S. Nivison, 91 years old, and a resident of Los Altos, California since 1952, died Oct. 16, 2014 at home.  His neighbors had recently honored him as the “Mayor of Russell Ave., in recognition of 62 years of distinguished living” on that ...

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Travel

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors


Courtesy of Castello di Amorosa
Castello di Amorosa in Calistoga, above, boasts a beautiful setting for viewing fall’s colors – and sampling the vineyard’s wines.

Yes, Virginia, there is fall in California.

The colors pop out in...

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Stepping Out

ECYS opens season Sunday

ECYS opens season Sunday


Ramya Krishna/Special to the Town Crier
The El Camino Youth Symphony rehearses for Sunday’s concert, above.

The El Camino Youth Symphony – under new conductor Jindong Cai – is scheduled to perform its season-opening concert 4 p.m....

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Spiritual Life

Christian Science Reading Room hosts webinar on prayer and healing

Christian Science practitioner and teacher Evan Mehlenbacher is scheduled to present a live Internet webinar lecture, “Prayer That Heals,” 7:30 p.m. Nov. 14 in the Christian Science Reading Room, 60 Main St., Los Altos.

Those interested ...

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Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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State allocations put Foothill-De Anza district budgets in jeopardy

Enrollment of full-time equivalent students (FTES) increased 6 percent during the summer session and 5 percent during the fall quarter at the Foothill-De Anza Community College District. The state was unable to address the rapid growth in numbers of community college students, which resulted in 1,700 unfounded FTES.

"When we deal with unfounded FTES that means the state has not paid for them and we are unable to support them," said Vice Chancellor Mike Brandy, who added that the district had to absorb $1.4 million in support programs. "We had enough money in the ending balance to cover this, but we will have looming problems ahead of us."

The ending balance in the general fund on June 30 was about $19 million. Of that amount, portions were used to meet the 5 percent reserve target, purchase orders and departmental carry-overs. The adopted budget for 2002-03 reflects a forecasted operating deficit of about $5.1 million.

Strategies to address this deficit include an orderly discussion of the target for reduction and actual cuts needed to balance the budget, Brandy said.

Federal changes in visas created a decrease in nonresident students as well as a decrease in funding by about $615,000. Nonresident revenue is not turned over to the state like regular tuition.

Measure E for $248 million in general obligation bonds was approved by voters in November 1999, and the first $100 million was exercised in June 2000. In October 2002, the district refinanced the bonds to take advantage of lower interest rates. This action resulted in additional income to the Measure E bond program. It is expected that the second installment of bonds to be issued will occur in late 2003 or early 2004.

The initial planning phase of Measure E is in full swing. The first major new building (the Science Center at De Anza) is under construction, and the next 24-month period will be the most intense period of planning and construction during the Measure E program.

"The governor's budget in January can revise a lot of things with shortfalls, but there is a lot of uncertainty before the end of the year," Brandy said. "It appears the state will operate at a $21.2 billion deficit next year and for years will be at a $16 million deficit."

Brandy said one large concern about the state budget is that a number of one-time funding sources were used to balance the 2002-03 budgets, leading to speculation about midyear reductions as well as significant reductions in the 2003-04 allocations.

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