Other Voices: A public works report card

Los Altos has changed very little in 34 years, so one would not expect our governmental departments to have grown much. In 1985, the Engineering Department had five employees; today it has 12.

Salaries for each position have a range, depending on years employed. The collective annual total for the mid-range salaries is approximately $1.35 million. With an estimated override of 18% for benefits, the total cost to the city becomes $1.6 million. If the current staff were cut to six, the savings would be approximately $800,000 per year. We are being asked to approve a parcel tax to raise $1.1 million each year for the Clean Water and Sustainable Storm Drainage Initiative, with no identification of any flood damage having occurred.


A mother's birthright

 

Tiptoeing into our hotel room just past 1 a.m., with her Bette Davis hazel eyes sparkling brightly, my daughter Jenni instantly became confused when I had an explosive “mommy moment.”

Peek into the Past - Week of May 1


Courtesy of Mountain View Historical Association

Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to buy an Eichler home for $13,950 in Mountain View today? Check out this vintage advertisement from the Fairview Track by Eichler Homes from the Jan. 15, 1954, edition of the San Mateo Times. The Mountain View Historical Association has scheduled “The History of Eichler Homes,” a presentation by Monique Lombardelli, 2-4 p.m. Sunday at the Mountain View Public Library, 585 Franklin St. Considered an evangelist for mid-20th-century Modern-style homes, Lombardelli will share the story behind the iconic mid-century subdivisions of Joseph Eichler. Admission is free. To RSVP, visit eventbrite.com/e/the-history-of-eichler-homes-tickets-60110844153.

Other Voices: A woman ahead of her time

My mom was a woman who was way ahead of her generation. For a woman born in China in 1914, she was bold to have defied her mother’s desire to play matchmaker for her with a son from a wealthy family. This was definitely not the norm for Chinese girls during her days. She had already met a young man she thought had ambition and drive. She married him, my father, and chose to get a secretarial job to help with the finances.

I was too young to know much about the early years other than my father having to settle his father’s debts before he managed to transition into a shipping business after the war. Once the family finances were secure, my parents made sure that we had a quality education and engaged home tutors in Chinese, calligraphy lessons, plus piano lessons for all the kids and ballet for the girls. My mom took on the task of visiting boarding schools on the East Coast before sending my brother and me to prep schools.

Other Voices: Los Altos stormwater drainage initiative worth the extra money

A proposed city of Los Altos stormwater drainage fee, subject of a city council public hearing Tuesday, will average approximately $7 per month, or $88 per year per parcel.

Other Voices: Understanding, appreciating differences between Shoah and Holocaust

 

Every year, my students in my Holocaust course ask me: What’s the difference between Shoah and the Holocaust? Or the difference between Yom HaShoah and Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust? In my years of work as a scholar and Holocaust educator, I’ve seen much confusion over these names and definitions. In the wake of the upcoming remembrance ceremonies, I thought it appropriate to offer some clear definitions.

Other Voices: Sharing is the solution for BCS, LASD

At the April 8 Los Altos School District board meeting, families expressed their outrage with the proposal to relocate Egan Junior High School. Our community believes, and I agree, that the proposed Bullis Charter School/Los Altos School District agreement is not in the best interests of our children. We all want peace, but not at any cost. We must find a better solution.

I request that the district and charter school boards work together to implement a groundbreaking district/charter collaboration that benefits all students.


Submit a Letter to the Editor

The Town Crier welcomes letters to the editor on current events pertinent to Los Altos, Los Altos Hills and Mountain View. Write to us at 138 Main St., Los Altos 94022, Attn: Editor, or email editor Bruce Barton at bruceb@latc.com. Because editorial space is limited, please confine letters to no more than 200 words. Include a phone number for verification purposes. Anonymous letters will not be printed.

You can also have your say right here at losaltosonline.com – scroll to the bottom of any story to add a comment. 

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