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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Other Voices: Citizen rescuers provide valuable animal services

The Town Crier article on abandoned cats near Los Altos High School missed a golden opportunity to educate the local community about the resources available to help with such situations (“Expert comes to rescue after feral cats litter neighborhood,” Oct. 16.).

The primary role of animal control agencies, such as Palo Alto Animal Services or the Silicon Valley Animal Control Authority, is to ensure the well-being of both animals and people by responding to exceptional situations involving animals, code enforcement and the operation of a shelter and a low-cost spay/neuter clinic. It falls mostly to volunteers, both rescue groups and individuals, to prevent the unchecked growth of the feral cat population through the proven Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) method: The cats are trapped humanely, sterilized so that they cannot reproduce, vaccinated and returned to their home territory, where they are provided food and water regularly and sometimes even shelter against the elements. The person managing a colony knows the cats, recognizes when new cats appear who need to be TNR’d and knows when a cat needs veterinary intervention. The cats that have already been “fixed” are distinguished by having one ear either tipped (the pointed tip is cut off so that it is flat on top) or notched during surgery so that they are not put through the program twice. The cats earn their keep by controlling the rodent population.

For residents of Santa Clara County, the volunteer community established The Cat Resource Center (catcenter.org). Requests submitted via the website for help with cats are routed to experienced cat rescuers who live near the situation and will work with homeowners and their neighbors toward a resolution. The one thing rescuers will not do is make the cats simply “go away,” though they may arrange foster homes for kittens who are young enough to be socialized, all of whom subsequently can be put up for adoption.

Santa Clara County has a voucher program for feral cats that makes the cost of fixing and vaccinating one cat just $10 for a resident. The Palo Alto Humane Society (paloaltohumane.org) has a similar program that covers only surgery costs.

When un-fixed cats appear in your neighborhood, the responsibility to act is yours; there is no government service to summon. You need to arrange for the cats to be fixed, vaccinated and fed regularly so that they can have a reasonable life in the environment they know best. Contact The Cat Resource Center or a local rescue group for assistance. Those of us involved in cat rescue are more than willing to teach others how to trap and get cats fixed.

For a cornucopia of information about feral cats and TNR, visit Alley Cat Allies, a national cat advocacy group, at alleycat.org.

Ivor Durham is a Los Altos resident and volunteer at Fat Cat Rescue. For more information, visit fatcatrescue.org.

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