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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News Briefs

Council approves city holiday closures

The Los Altos City Council Oct. 8 unanimously approved a one-week closure of city offices during the holiday season.

The council opted to close city hall and the Hillview Community Center offices Dec. 25 through Jan. 1. Essential city services, such as police, fire and maintenance, will remain open and operational during the one-week hiatus. Building inspection services will also remain available on request. Affected city departments are expected to resume normal hours of operation Jan. 2.

In past years, Los Altos traditionally closed city hall, the city’s Municipal Service Center and the community center early Dec. 24 and 31, with full-day closures Dec. 25 and Jan. 1.

A city staff report on the item outlines several reasons justifying the closure, noting that other nearby cities, including Los Altos Hills, have instituted similar closures because of “the low number of citizens seeking municipal services during this holiday time period.”

The report added that affected Los Altos programs and services – excluding public safety services – received 110 visitors Dec. 24-31 last year, spanning city hall, the community center and the Municipal Service Center. That number, according to the report, equates to an average of seven visitors per site, per day.

Approximately 75 percent of calls to the city last year were related to winter storm problems or emergency situations handled by Maintenance Services, the report added.

The report concluded that the closure will also result in a small savings to the city in reduced utility costs, as well as a reduced liability for accumulated leave time by employees.

PG&E project scheduled in south Los Altos

A three-day PG&E project has been scheduled in November to extend the height of two electric transmission towers in south Los Altos.

Work on the towers – one located at the intersection of Fallen Leaf and Louise lanes, the other at the PG&E easement adjacent to Stevens Creek off Holt Avenue – is slated Nov. 17-19.

According to city and PG&E officials, the work is needed to provide additional clearance between transmission wires and the ground.

Residents and visitors in the area can expect to see crews using cranes to lift and install extensions to the top or mid-section of existing transmission towers. Power lines will be de-energized and rewired as part of the work. Residents should not experience an interruption in service during the project.

Residents with questions or concerns can call Customer Outreach Specialist Pamela Stevens at (408) 282-7530 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Water district hosts open houses

The Santa Clara Valley Water District is scheduled to host two open houses for residents to provide an overview of and answer questions about its Permanente Creek Flood Protection Project.

The first open house is slated 9 a.m. to noon Saturday in the Covington School multipurpose room, 201 Covington Ave., Los Altos. The second is set for 2-5 p.m. Saturday in the Mariano Castro Elementary School multipurpose room, 505 Escuela Ave., Mountain View.

The project, which aims to provide natural flood protection for more than 1,600 nearby properties, is funded by the Clean, Safe Creeks and Natural Flood Protection parcel tax, passed by county voters in November 2000.

Work on the project stretches more than 10 miles along the creek, starting at San Francisco Bay’s southwest shoreline and winding through Mountain View to Foothill Expressway in Los Altos. Four of five project design features are slated for construction starting next summer, including floodwalls, channel widening, a new diversion structure and a flood-detention basin at Rancho San Antonio Open Space Preserve.

For more information, visit valleywater.org.

– Town Crier Staff Report

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