Mon10202014

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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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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