Letters to the Editor: Which side is Los Altos on?

LAH: Reject state zoning control

Years ago, Los Altos Hills incorporated for the purpose of capturing local control over zoning for the purpose of retaining the semi-rural character of the town. With no apparent concern for residents who wish to retain local control, the idea has arisen among our political class of ramming state control over the zoning down our throats.
Under state control, our lots would be broken up into smaller ones, but for what purpose? Does this benefit the residents of the Bay Area or of California? Quite the opposite is true.

To understand the motivation, one must follow the money. Developers stand to make a bundle by dividing our lots up into smaller ones and building houses on the newly formed lots. After sharing a tiny fraction of the revenue with cooperating politicians, these developers will still make a bundle. The rest of us will be left with an acute shortage of air resources, water resources, sewage systems, schools, hospitals, courts, police protection, fire protection, airports and roads with which to support the burgeoning population of the Bay Area and California.

Before it is too late, let’s put up a defense against this phenomenon!

Terry Oldberg
Los Altos Hills

Which side is Los Altos on?

Desmond Tutu said, “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, then you have chosen the side of the oppressor.”

I was extremely disappointed to read that the Los Altos City Council delayed a discussion of police reform, instead spending its time discussing housing design and a treehouse.

Do people march in the street over the size of a house, or a treehouse?

Racism is not enforced by a word, or an act. It is a system. The system is perpetuated by complicit, inefficient bureaucracy, and mundane issues like zoning laws that encourage “single family” (wealthy family) homes. Meanwhile, some of these homes display signs pleading, “Save Our Neighborhood Schools,” and I ask, save them from what? Renters? Immigrants? Children with lower test scores?

I applaud Police Chief Andy Galea and City Manager Chris Jordan for expressing their openness to change, the signers of the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District petition on racism for taking a stand, and Councilwoman Jeannie Bruins for her concern about delays.

The people are speaking. It is up to our city, county and state leaders to listen, and to act now. The alternative is complicity.

Brian Peter
Los Altos

Bocce court offer misrepresented

Pat Marriott’s letter to the editor misrepresented the board members of the charitable funds offering $50,000 to provide bocce courts for south Los Altos seniors, equivalent to those being built at Hillview (“Bocce ball offer has egos attached,” Sept. 2). She and her cohorts have two very serious problems.

1. They find it easier to make stuff up than to do their homework. I do not play bocce as a recreation and never have. I play golf. None of the board members of the offering funds play bocce and do not plan to do so. We have no personal interest in Grant Park.

2. Pat Marriott and her cohorts think everyone is like them, motivated only by self-interest. They do not understand people who, unselfishly, devote time and money to improve their community, gaining no personal advantages. This is their fatal flaw in their approach to city politics.

King Lear
Los Altos

All-electric reach codes could prevent tragedies

Things that burn can lead to tragedy. A recent fire reported in Los Altos is the latest example.

This is a quote from the report for NBC Bay Area News: “A Los Altos neighborhood was evacuated early Monday morning due to a residential gas meter leak and fire, according to the Santa Clara County Fire Department. Fire crews responded just after 3 a.m. to the 1800 block of Grant Park Lane on the report of a gas leak and fire. Police evacuated a total of seven residences in that block and the 1800 block of Alford Avenue, which is directly behind the affected area, fire officials said. No injuries were reported.”

Thank goodness, no injuries were reported. It could have been worse.

Just about 10 years ago (Sept. 9, 2010), the community of San Bruno experienced fires and explosions. Eight people died and 58 were injured. It could have been better.

If the San Bruno homes were all-electric, this could not have happened.

We can prevent this from happening in construction of new buildings today.

An all-electric reach code means there is no gas line to blow up. All-electric homes have been around for years. This does not need to happen again.

Bruce Naegel
Metrics and research director
Sustainable Silicon Valley

Let’s find a place for ‘Mr. Los Altos’

I appreciated Robin Chapman’s column on Walter Singer (“Restoring a displaced bronze tribute: Walter Singer and Los Altos,” Aug. 12).

I, too, have wondered for many years where his bronze bust was hiding. As I recall, when they redid Veterans Community Plaza, the city moved it and said it would be relocated.

I would encourage the city’s Public Arts Commission to find a place for this marvelous gentleman, who was a big part of Los Altos history. It isn’t a large piece and we seem to have many varied sculptures sprinkled around our downtown – surely we could find a place for “Mr. Los Altos.”

Karen Jenney
Los Altos

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. 

Paid Political Endorsement letters

The Town Crier offers the option of pre-paid political endorsement letters for candidates in the Nov. 3 election.

Letters must support candidates – no submissions containing exclusively negative content will be printed.

Authors’ names are required for publication. Letters will be published in the order they are received, and we will accept only one letter per author per campaign. Please limit letters to no more than 200 words.

The cost is $150 per endorsement letter for either print or online, $200 for both. The deadline is 5 p.m. Wednesdays for inclusion in the following week’s Town Crier. To submit endorsement letters and for more information, email Howard Bischoff at howardb@latc.com.

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