Fri03062015

News

Council considers freezing First St. development

Council considers freezing First St. development


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
A pedestrian walks along First Street in downtown Los Altos last week. Future construction on the street could soon be barred by an emergency moratorium on development.

Further construction along First Street could...

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Schools

Santa Rita students put on Kranky Kids Radio Show

Santa Rita students put on Kranky Kids Radio Show


Traci Newell/ Town Crier
Neighborhood volunteer Lishka DeVoss, center, introduces members of Santa Rita School’s Kranky Kids Radio Club to their interviewee last week. The students star in the Kranky Kids Radio Show, which airs Fridays on KZSU.
...

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Community

Music for Minors partners with Harvard to expand efforts

Music for Minors partners with Harvard to expand efforts


Palmer

When the thriving Music for Minors began to outgrow its capacity, the local nonprofit organization made new friends.

Beginning in late February, Music for Minors – a Town Crier Holiday Fund recipient – partnered with Harvard Business Sch...

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Sports

Eagles make school history

Eagles make school history

Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos High School Eagles defeated Santa Clara High School Tuesday to advance to the Central Coast Section basketball finals Saturday.

The Eagles are headed where no Los Altos High boys basketball team has gone...

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Comment

Dangerous streets: A Piece of My Mind

I’m driving along El Monte Avenue between Foothill Expressway and Springer Road at approximately 6 p.m. on a midwinter evening. In keeping with the “village feeling” of our town, there are no sidewalks and no streetlights.

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Special Sections

Lions, lambs and Cab Franc for March

Lions, lambs and Cab Franc for March


Christine Moore/Special to the Town Crier
Oven fries, a slice of feta cheese and the bite of harissa mayonnaise make for a late-winter, early-spring dinner perfectly paired with Cabernet Franc.

I can’t help but wonder whether March will come in ...

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Business

Los Altos scientist named Inventor of the Year

Los Altos scientist named Inventor of the Year

Alicia Castro/Town Crier
Robert Showen, above, the Silicon Valley Intellectual Property Lawyers Association’s Inventor of the Year, began researching his ShotSpotter technology in his Los Altos home. Sensors are placed around a city, below, and fou...

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Books

French novel

French novel "Hunting and Gathering" offers character-driven suspense


Anna Gavalda is a well-known author in her native France, where she has published six books, most of which have met with considerable praise and commercial success. Her fourth novel, “Hunting and Gathering” (Riverhead Books, 2007), is filled ...

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People

JACK JOSEPH CRANE

JACK JOSEPH CRANE

Long time Los Altos resident, Jack Joseph Crane, loving husband and devoted father of two children, passed away peacefully at the Terraces in Los Altos, Saturday, February 21, 2015. He was 95 years of age. Jack was born on June 22, 1919. He is prec...

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Travel

Seoul of the city: Korean capital offers mix of old and new

Seoul of the city: Korean capital offers mix of old and new


Ramya Krishna/Special to the Town Crier
Seoul’s Cheonggyecheon public recreation space, above, features an elevated pedestrian bridge.

Seoul, South Korea, is a study in contrasts. Having grown quickly, the city is a mix of old and new.

Using...

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Stepping Out

TheatreWorks jumps into ‘Lake’

TheatreWorks jumps into ‘Lake’


Kevin Berne/Special to the Town Crier
Jason Bowen, from left, Adam Poss and Nilanjana Bose star in “The Lake Effect,” opening this weekend at the Lucie Stern Theatre in Palo Alto and running through March 29.

The TheatreWorks production ...

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Spiritual Life

Is your thought life sabotaging your spiritual journey?

My computer started having problems – there seemed to be some sort of malware running in the background. At first it was just annoying, then it began to slow down my computer, interfering with its basic operations. What is it doing? Why can...

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Magazine

Local events serve up family fun

Local events serve up family fun


Courtesy of Peninsula Youth Theatre
Peninsula Youth Theatre’s production of “Pecos Bill: A Tall Tale” is slated to open March 20 in Mountain View.

For families seeking a break from the daily routine, events abound this month and next in Los Alto...

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Realtor group favors flood insurance legislation

Realtors hailed a bill introduced recently by members of Congress that would delay flood insurance rate increases, which became effective Oct. 1.

The legislation postpones federally mandated flood insurance rate increases stalled because of the government shutdown. The new rate increases alarmed many homeowners, who saw their flood insurance rates rise.

National Association of Realtors officials reported that the bipartisan support could help millions of homeowners who facing sudden and in some cases extreme increases in flood insurance premiums, an unintended consequence of legislation to reform the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

The NFIP was originally created in 1968 because private insurance companies refused to provide flood insurance, as the payouts were too large to be profitable. The NFIP is now more than $20 billion in debt to the U.S. Treasury, largely because of claims from Hurricane Katrina, which destroyed much of Louisiana and the surrounding area, and Hurricane Sandy, which caused severe flooding and widespread damage on the northeastern coast of the country.

Last year Congress passed the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012 (BW-12), which reauthorized the NFIP but also made major changes to the insurance premiums many homeowners would pay, including the phase-out of some federal subsidies. When it took effect Oct. 1, homeowners in some of the hardest-hit areas saw their flood insurance premiums increase from $1,000 per year to as much as $10,000 or more per year.

The new bill delays further implementation of some rate increases in BW-12, allowing the Federal Emergency Management Agency to complete an affordability study mandated by BW-12, propose targeted regulations to address any affordability problems found in the study and give Congress adequate time to review those regulations.

Flood insurance is required to secure a mortgage in many cities in the Bay Area. When homeowners cannot obtain flood insurance, sales of homes are stalled, said Carolyn Miller, president of the Silicon Valley Association of Realtors.

“The five-year reauthorization of the NFIP will ensure that buyers will be able to obtain the flood insurance required to obtain a mortgage, and the new legislation that delays the flood insurance rate increases will ensure that all homes pay a rate that fairly reflects their risk of flooding,” she said.

The Silicon Valley Association of Realtors provided information for this article. For more information, email Rose Meily at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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