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News

Police stress need for low speed in school zones

Police stress need for low speed in school zones


Town Crier File Photo
After two recent accidents involving cyclists and motorists, police urge caution – on both sides.

After two recent incidents of vehicles striking student bicyclists, Los Altos Police urge residents to exercise caution whe...

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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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There’s no quick fix for removing points from driving record

Q: Is it possible to remove points from your DMV driving record?

A: Points assigned as a result of collisions or traffic tickets are not something you want on your driving record. Generally, the DMV assigns one point for collisions where you are at fault and one or two points for tickets.

The only way to remove points from a driving record is to wait. Most points stay on your record for three years. Depending on severity, points may stay on your record for up to 10 years. If you receive a traffic citation, some courts will allow you to attend traffic school to keep a point from being added to your record.

To avoid accruing points, follow the traffic laws and don’t engage in reckless behavior. Drive defensively and avoid distractions while on the road. Keep this advice in mind, and you will be able to keep points off of your driving record.

For more information on points on your driving record, visit www.DMV.ca.gov.

Q: I recently took my behind-the-wheel driving test and failed. I immediately realized my error and asked if I could take the test again that day. The examiner said that I couldn’t and that I would need to schedule another appointment. I am over 18, so why couldn’t I take another test the same day?

A: Driving tests are scheduled by appointment only so that offices can effectively manage their workload and resources. Additionally, this gives you more time to practice until your next appointment.

Q: I’m not operating my vehicle, though the registration fees are current and I’ve canceled the insurance. Now I am getting notices of “Intent to Suspend.” What should I do?

A: When your registration fees are current and you are not operating your vehicle, you must submit an “Affidavit of Non-Use,” REG. 5090 form. This notification will stop the insurance suspension action. If your vehicle is still not being operated when you receive a billing notice for your next renewal period, file a “Planned Non-Operational” status on the vehicle and pay the appropriate fee.

For more information on vehicle registration insurance requirements, visit www.DMV.ca.gov/vr/insurance.htm.

Q: What is the proper way to handle an aggressive driver on the road?

A: When confronted with aggressive drivers, make every attempt to get out of their way. If that is impossible, here are some suggestions to keep you safe: Wear your seatbelt; avoid eye contact with the aggressor; put your pride aside and do not challenge the aggressor by speeding up or attempting to hold your own in your travel lane; ignore gestures and refuse to return them. You or a passenger can call the police and report aggressive driving. But if you use a cellphone and it’s not hands-free, first pull over to a safe location.

Q: I’m in the process of purchasing a used vehicle and I want to ensure that the seller is the legal owner. I’m having trouble finding this information – does the DMV have tools to aid my search?

A: The most effective way to determine that the seller is the owner of record is to review the Ownership Certificate and be careful about purchasing a vehicle from a private party if he or she does not have the Ownership Certificate or is not the registered owner. If you purchase a vehicle and the seller cannot provide releases from the registered or legal owner of record, you will need to locate the owner yourself to obtain releases. This can be difficult, especially with finance companies that have been sold or no longer exist. Because privacy concerns prevent you from easily obtaining vehicle history information from the DMV, you may want to request that the seller meet you at a DMV field office to transfer the vehicle into your name.

George Valverde was appointed California Department of Motor Vehicles Director in 2006 and has worked in public service for more than 30 years.

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