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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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Police always in danger – even here: Editorial

It happened in a flash – two Santa Cruz police officers stepped out of their car, as they had hundreds of times before, to interview 35-year-old Jeremy Goulet at his home. As they stood at the front door of the house, shots rang out – at them. Within seconds, they were dead.

We realize that Santa Cruz sees much more activity than Los Altos when it comes to crime and violence, but just the same, the news of their deaths was shocking. No police officer in that popular tourist town had ever been shot and killed in the line of duty.

The incident is one of many – too many – senseless shootings in recent years in which people with mental and/or anger-management problems had easy access to firearms and used them with horrific consequences. Obviously, these tragedies have spurred fierce debate among firearms enthusiasts and opponents over the accessibility issue.

The one area of debate on which both sides seem to agree is restricting/prohibiting firearms access to those with questionable mental histories. Unfortunately, it is hard to pin down the definition of “mental instability.” There are some obvious cases, but what about a seemingly sane person, with no prior record, under a lot of stress who snaps? What about an older, responsible adult who does something reckless at age 15 and has it forever on his or her record?

Back to Los Altos. In addition to great schools, one of this city’s prime attractions is what it doesn’t have: a high crime rate. Knock on wood, but there hasn’t been a murder or homicide reported here in more than 20 years. Except for a few bank robberies, including one last week, crimes are limited to burglaries and thefts. The research site NeighborhoodScout.com has just named Los Altos the 23rd safest city in the country.

Do such statistics provide a rationale for reducing the number of police officers? Of course not. Our department provides valuable services and is our insurance policy when people commit horrible acts.

Santa Cruz serves as a reminder that a police officer becomes a target every time he or she puts on the uniform. Any traffic stop or visit to a home essentially puts their lives on the line. Now that might sound exaggerated, but the fact remains that anything can happen, even here. We might not like the parking tickets, but we appreciate and thank our police officers for the job they do.

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