Last updateWed, 27 Jul 2016 10am

County claims no responsibility for toppled trees: Other Voices

During the storm on March 5, three tall, dead pine trees located behind my property line along Foothill Expressway fell onto my property, breaking my boundary fence and depositing tree trunks and debris in my backyard and pool.

Sunday morning I called the Los Altos Public Works Department to inform them of the incident. A police officer responded and promptly called a Public Works employee to inspect my property. I was told to contact Chris Costanzo, who would respond the following day. Costanzo inspected the damage Monday and informed me that the city of Los Altos was not responsible for any damage, as the trees were on county property.

Letters to the Editor

City should engage urban planner

After providing a well-thought-out presentation that included input from the community as well as the Los Altos School District, the Los Altos City Council voted unanimously to disband the City-Schools Public Lands Committee March 9.

This vote clears the way for the council to add planning for the 18-acre Los Altos Civic Center and Hillview Community Center and Park to its 2016 goals.

Making parks a priority in Los Altos: Other Voices


In the early 1950s, after my father had been mayor, Los Altos City Manager John Hope asked me to take on a project in coordination with Stanford University, where I was studying political science. The arrangement was that the city manager and his assistant, George Sanregret (later the longtime city manager), along with building inspector Joe Salameda (later the city’s first historian), would supervise me in an independent study program to help the city determine where to obtain property for parks. In return, I would get a grade for my studies toward work in city government.

Good decisions on seniors, schools: Editorial

The current Los Altos City Council has its ups and downs. Members’ competence and commitment is without question. The question for some is their ability to get things done. Still, members’ actions at their March 8 meeting showed their ability to listen and make good decisions.

Mayor Jeannie Bruins and Councilwoman Mary Prochnow were convinced going into the meeting that de-chartering the joint Los Altos/Los Altos Hills Senior Commission was the right thing to do. But after hearing strong testimony from local seniors and their advocates, councilmembers realized how important a chartered senior commission was to many involved in the city’s seniors’ activities. Some speakers interpreted de-chartering as taking away the commission’s authority. Instead of de-chartering, the council moved to re-charter the commission to include fewer members and remove age limits for its members. We appreciate the council’s action to preserve the Senior Commission.

Letters to the Editor

Respect speed limit – lives are at stake

Please, please, please, please drive the speed limit in our wonderful Los Altos neighborhoods.

Please. Our speed limits are 25 mph on residential streets so that we can be safe while out walking our dogs, running, walking or just out and about.

Unpresidential politics: No Shoes, Please

“Don’t feed the trolls” was advice offered by a political commentator in 2011 during the Donald Trump-manufactured hysteria over President Barack Obama’s birth certificate. What he meant was: Don’t encourage fringe elements to express nonsensical viewpoints, don’t fan the flames of discord among people driven by irrational fears, and don’t bestow the mantle of leadership onto someone simply because he’s the one holding the biggest pitchfork in a crowd of angry townsfolk.

Well, obviously, nobody in the Republican Party was listening back then, because Trump is on his way to becoming their presidential nominee, bolstered by droves of supporters who love his swagger, his condescension, his insufferable ignorance and his incendiary rhetoric. It’s incredible to watch Trump feed his audience the kind of dog food that was sold 50 years ago, and then see them gobble it up like it’s steak. Remember Gaines-Burgers? Resembled a hamburger patty but was actually a toxic plastic?

Inside the lines: Haugh About That?

Curled around my down-feathered pillow as chicken pox created a polka-dot motif all over my body, my father stood at the end of my bed with the best pill for relief.

“Honey, I have a gift for you,” he smiled. “I know how much you love to color.” Then, handing me a Shirley Temple coloring book, along with a fresh box of Crayola crayons, I instantly forgot the feeling that a thousand mosquitoes had just attacked my body.

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