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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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Satterlee takes over as Los Altos mayor


Diego Abeloos/Town Crier
Megan Satterlee, with her son Wardin and husband Clay, is sworn in as mayor of Los Altos.

The Los Altos City Council Nov. 26 voted unanimously to return Councilwoman Megan Satterlee to a role she’s held before – mayor.

Satterlee, who previously served as mayor in 2009, took the seat occupied by Councilman Jarrett Fishpaw the past year. Satterlee then nominated Councilwoman Jan Pepper as the city’s new mayor pro tem.

Following tradition, Fishpaw and Satterlee presented each other with engraved medals. Fishpaw – who at 25 became the city’s youngest mayor a year ago – handed Satterlee the key to the city, telling her jokingly that it “didn’t fit on my key ring.”

With son Wardin accompanying her on the dais, Satterlee thanked her husband and fellow councilmembers for their support and pledged to run “efficient and effective” council meetings. She also called for open dialogue with the public and creating an atmosphere “where councilmembers are open to each other’s ideas and where we move forward (on areas) where we have common agendas.”

Satterlee later told the Town Crier that she sees the council’s annual retreat, scheduled Dec. 14, as the initial opportunity to discuss and formulate common goals and objectives for the city in 2014.

“A member of the public said to me today, ‘Don’t try to do everything poorly. Try and do a couple of things well,’” Satterlee said. “So the question we’ll have to answer on the 14th is: Are there a couple of things we all want to do well or are we spreading ourselves thin because our interests are spread thin?”

Satterlee noted that this year’s retreat would likely be a two-part process that includes the use of an outside facilitator. While the council is slated to discuss a host of pressing city issues and formulate its 2014 goals, it will also spend time during the daylong session “gaining a better understanding of each other’s styles so that, again, we can collaborate more effectively and efficiently,” she said.

She also noted a personal focus on transportation issues “in the broadest possible sense,” citing safety issues for cyclists, pedestrians and motorists, as well as traffic-calming and congestion concerns in some parts of the city.

Reflecting on his year as mayor, Fishpaw noted that while the functions are ceremonial in nature, being at the helm of a city presented a “learning curve” and left him with a deeper appreciation for the role overall.

“It is challenging sometimes, because there are expectations that people have that the mayor can fix, change or do anything,” he said. “That’s really not the case – you’re always working with the rest of your council to build consensus.”

Pepper, meanwhile, told those in attendance that she remains committed to the principles she set forth during her election campaign in 2012. She pointed specifically to her commitment to transparent and inclusive governance, open and respectful dialogue with residents and environmental sustainability.

Like Satterlee, Pepper said the council’s upcoming retreat could serve as an opportunity to set a collaborative tone for the upcoming year.

“We’ve worked together for a year now, so we know each other a little better,” she said. “Hopefully, we can really coalesce as a group and figure out how to get some things done together.”

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