Sat09202014

News

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates


Nine candidates have filed to run for three open seats on the Mountain View City Council in the Nov. 4 election – none of them incumbents. The Town Crier asked them to introduce themselves to readers in the following Q&A format. We knew the...

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Schools

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects


Traci Newell/Town Crier
The Los Altos School District’s newly expanded Facilities Advisory Committee met for the first time last week. The 28-member committee’s first task is to prioritize campus improvement projects.

The Los Altos Scho...

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Community

Sports

New-look Lancers find their footing

New-look Lancers find their footing


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Jenna Adams, left, and Carly Deale attempt to bump the ball Friday night. The juniors combined for 28 kills.

This year’s St. Francis High girls volleyball team faintly resembles last season’s squad ...

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Special Sections

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
An estimated 75 supporters of higher teacher pay turned out for the Sept. 4 Mountain View Whisman School District board meeting.

Teachers, trustees and administrators are recovering from a dramatic Mountain View Whism...

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Business

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Esthetician Marjan Kashi showcases one of the treatment rooms at her new studio, Pure Serenity Skincare at Rancho Shopping Center. Kashi provides services including microdermabrasion and various light and heat energy the...

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Books

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation


During World War II, Virgilia Short Witzel, a young mother and U.S. Navy officer’s wife, grappled on the home front in Menlo Park with wartime rationing, shortages and loneliness. During the ensuing Cold War, she experienced adventure and misadventur...

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People

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

Resident of San Jose and Los Altos, California

July 21, 1931 to August 4, 2014

Born in Arimo, Idaho, to Jerald Emmett and Rebecca Henderson Nelson Christiansen. Raised in Davis and Riverside, California, with summers in Downey, Idaho, and in Loga...

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Travel

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska


Sandy Powell/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos resident and bird photographer Sandy Powell recently visited Homer, Alaska, to photograph Sandhill cranes, below. While there, Powell also encountered moose, left.

Los Altos resident Sandy Powell, a...

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Stepping Out

Pear puts on a pair of plays

Pear puts on a pair of plays


J. Smith/Special to the Town Crier
Dan Kapler (as Teddy) and Betsy Kruse Craig (Trish) star in Pear Avenue Theatre’s “House.”

The Pear Avenue Theatre production of two interlocking comedies by Alan Ayckbourn – “House&...

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Spiritual Life

Back to Church Sunday offers opportunity to recommit

The children in Los Altos are back to school, and I can still hear parents cheering. Summer is officially over, even if the calendar doesn’t quite think so.

Parents have attended Back to School nights to meet their children’s teachers. B...

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Magazine

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living


Courtesy of Spectrum Interior Design
In place of a more traditional fireplace, this modern living room features a linear-flame firebox that emits heat while offering a sculpturelike design element.

After traveling the world and visiting a host...

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MV proceeds with own day worker ordinance

The city of Mountain View is in the process of enacting a no-solicitation ordinance aimed at the hundreds of day workers who have congregated for more than 10 years along or near El Camino Real and San Antonio Road.

A similar ordinance, already passed by the Los Altos council last July almost immediately forced the workers from the Los Altos side of El Camino to the Mountain View side. The Los Altos day worker ordinance, and one considered by Mountain View, forbids prospective employers to stop by the roadside and solicit work.

The laws are the result of years of complaints among Los Altos and Mountain View businesses and residents about large groups of day workers who stand on the roadside of El Camino Real, hoping to find work from people who drive by.

The Los Altos ordinance went into effect in September. Although the city could not prevent the workers from congregating on the sidewalks, a violation of their First Amendment right to assemble, it could restrict their ability to find work by making it more difficult for employers to stop and hire them. Thus far, Los Altos officials said the ordinance has been effective in keeping workers off Los Altos sidewalks.

"The ordinance was supposed to stop the vehicles and pedestrians from soliciting work in the right of way and it did exactly that," said Layne Long, Los Altos assistant to the city manager.

The Mountain View City Council's Neighborhoods Committee proposed a day worker ordinance similar to that of Los Altos at the Dec. 7 council meeting. The ordinance would designate El Camino Real as a no-stopping, no-parking zone from Showers Drive to San Antonio Road, would provide $6,000 for increased day worker-employer education, and would require more discussion on the possible use of city property for a day worker center.

Equally as important as the legal aspects of the ordinance are the city's plans to work with a local day worker center.

The St. Joseph The Worker Center located at El Camino and Jordan Avenue in Los Altos, tries to "help people become familiar with assimilating into our society. Through our center, (the workers) can learn the language, learn about health and learn basically how to be self-sufficient, which includes finding employment." said director Mary Martinez. "The city of Mountain View is excellent in bringing in workers and employers to our center."

A program under the St. Vincent de Paul society, the center provides both day-to-day and permanent job opportunities, health education, English as a second language classes, and emergency services. To increase the effectiveness of the center, Martinez hopes to raise community awareness. "The cities should try to educate the community more so that we can better utilize the center. If more employers and residents make use of the center, people will understand why it is there," she said.

As of now, according to Mountain View assistant city manager Alex Terrazas, the day worker issue has been referred to the Mountain View City Council Neighborhoods Committee. The Committee, which is currently made up of Councilmembers Sally Lieber, chairwoman, Michael Kasperzak, and Mary Lou Zoglin, will meet later this month to schedule a date for a second reading of the ordinance.

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