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News

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers


Ellie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
Campaign yard signs are just one expenditure for candidates during election season.

Election finance filings are in, and Los Altos appears to be hosting a few financially lopsided races.

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Schools

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Bullis Charter School students wear their school spirit clothing to greet their mascot Oct. 3 in celebration of being named a National Blue Ribbon School.

Blach Intermediate, Egan Junior High and Bullis Charter schools ea...

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Community

Sports

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High running back Austin Johnson goes for a big gain after evading Los Altos High defensive tackle Phil Alameda in Friday’s game. Johnson scored two touchdowns for the Spartans.

After unveiling its wildc...

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Comment

Logan, McClatchie, Peruri for LASD board: Editorial

This is a crucial time for the Los Altos School District. Its leadership faces the challenge of balancing enrollment growth versus maintaining the small, neighborhood schools that make it a very popular district to attend. The district must also adap...

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Special Sections

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Tandava Waldon, left, manager of East West Bookstore on Castro Street in Mountain View, works with a customer. Waldon said the recently approved minimum-wage hike will have little impact on his business. “It’s not such a...

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Business

Delay Social Security? An easy way to decide

One of the most heatedly debated questions regarding Social Security is when to start.

You have the option of initiating benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70. The longer you wait, the larger the monthly payment you will receive over your...

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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

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

Suzanne Monica Dimm Specht passed Tuesday, Sept. 9th at the age of 84. Sue was born on April 21, 1930 in Portland, Oregon. After graduating from the University of Oregon in with a degree in Music, Sue taught in a little town called Clatskanie, Oreg...

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Travel

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening


Courtesy of Sally Brew
North Korea is home to many monuments honoring its “Dear Leaders,” left.

In August, I traveled for 11 days with MIR Corp. to North Korea, a fascinating country that is almost completely cut off from the rest of the world. ...

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Stepping Out

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto


Courtesy of José Luis Moscovich
West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” is slated to open Friday night in Palo Alto and run through Oct. 26.

West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” (“The Troubadour”) is scheduled to open this weekend...

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Spiritual Life

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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Letters to the Editor

The race is on

School has started at St. Francis. How do I know? Not by reading "Welcome Back" banners on campus, but the roar of cars, trucks and SUVs as they race to the finish line, the parking lot at St. Francis.

Yes, the annual fall ritual of racing to school is on. To avoid traffic congestion on Miramonte Avenue, many of those young drivers chose Russell Avenue as a speed-way shortcut. I've waved at these speeding drivers to slow down, but most are going so fast they don't even see me.

Parents, teachers, drivers - please, we all share these lovely Los Altos streets. Slow down, leave home earlier, walk or bike, take the bus.

Avoid an ugly accident that could ruin your life. Ease up on the gas pedal and use your legs to race to that first class.

Susan Besser

Los Altos

Don't add more concrete

In response to a recent article published in the Aug. 29 issue of the Town Crier, I'd like to point out the following:

The idea of adding concrete sidewalk to what most would consider "semi-rural Los Altos" would be the Number One significant degradation of the aesthetics and atmosphere of our community.

The visual aesthetics of sidewalks along our paved and graveled streets would change the character of our town forever.

While I understand the need for bicycle access and pedestrian access, the physical introduction of concrete sidewalks is not the answer.

As a bicycle rider and father of three children, I understand these concerns, but would rather explore other alternatives to the issues raised than simply add more concrete to our residential neighborhoods.

Bill Maston

Los Altos

Does justification for Segway add up?

For a city that is constantly pleading poor-mouth when it comes to revenues, I find it totally irresponsible for the city council to have approved a $7,000 expenditure for a Segway when the problem may be inefficient ticket-writing.

Assuming an 8-hour day with two 20-minute breaks, walking 5 to 8 miles per day is equivalent to doing I mile in 57 to 91 minutes.

Considering that a person in reasonably good physical shape ought to be able to walk a leisurely mile in 20 minutes, the officer is either out of shape or he is spending too much time writing tickets.

If the ticket-writing is slowing him down, it would have been better to buy him a digital camera or some other input device to speed up the ticket-writing rather than waste money on a Segway while our infrastructure is decaying before our eyes due to all the deferred maintenance by the city.

Additionally, the article on the Segway in the Town Crier is misleading in that it says staff anticipates a 50 percent increase in enforcement with the addition of the Segway.

Yet, in another paragraph, staff anticipates a 30 percent increase in revenue due to increased enforcement and an increase in the cost of the fines.

How can the fines go up by 67 percent and 233 percent and enforcement by 50 percent and have only a 30 percent increase in revenue?

Sounds like justification math to me.

Edward Kelley

Los Altos

Memories of junior high

Thank you for your splendid "Comment" in the Aug. 29 issue. In particular, your comment that junior high is a weird time hit me.

I grew up in Santa Cruz, where I attended Branciforte Junior High School. My father was an auto mechanic, and nobody in my family had gone to college. So, in the ninth grade I met with my homeroom teacher to select my career at Santa Cruz High, and chose machine shop, one of the trade courses.

My teacher noted my good grades in math and science and suggested college prep instead. But I said I was not going to college.

We debated it some and compromised on a study course called general culture, designed for non-college students. However, when I graduated in 1938, I discovered that most of the general culture courses were the college prep courses.

I had been hoodwinked by this clever teacher in junior high.It led me to graduate from UC Berkeley as an electrical engineer. I worked as a combat information center officer in the Navy during World War II and finally as a manager of space projects at NASA Ames.

All because of this astute junior high teacher.

Also, I appreciated your comments on SUVs and lockers at the present schools. Right on!

John Foster

Los Altos

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