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Huge hearty breakfast WEEKEND | P.13 JANUARY 14, 2011 VOLUME 19, NO. 2 650.964.6300 INSIDE: MOVIES | PAGE 16 Funds for schools or jobs downtown? GOVERNOR’S BUDGET CUTS THREATEN CITY’S PLAN FOR NEW GROCERY STORE By Daniel DeBolt S MICHELLE LE Cheryl Burke, an Atherton resident who vaulted to fame on TV’s “Dancing with the Stars,” leads local teens in a salsa dance class Jan. 10. The event at Burke’s newly expanded Mountain View studio was a fundraiser for the Police Activities League. Mixing it up with some salsa By James Tensuan C heryl Burke’s dance studio hosted a strange mix of guests on Mon- day, Jan 10. Teenagers, city council members, dancers and police were lingering along the mirrored walls of the newly expanded studio on Shoreline Boulevard, owned by Burke of “Dancing with the Stars” fame. This is The Dance Club See BURKE, page 11 Council approves controversial WiMAX tower atop church, near preschool By Daniel DeBolt T he City Council on Tuesday approved a wireless data tower atop First Presbyterian Church, despite claims from neighbors that it is illegal under the city’s zoning code. A group of neighbors concerned with possible health effects oppose the cell tower like structure in a INSIDE new church steeple at Miramonte and Cuesta streets. They said that a “common sense” reading of the code showed that such a tower is not allowed in the city’s residential areas. The tower for Clear Wire LLC would use new “WiMAX” technology to transmit data to WiFienabled computers and phones. The City Council disagreed, voting 4-1 to approve the tower, with Margaret Abe-Koga opposed. Mayor Jac Siegel recused himself because he owns a home nearby, while Vice Mayor Mike Kasperzak recused himself partway through the meeting when he realized that Sprint, which he owns stock in, owns 51 percent of Clear Wire. Councilwoman Laura Macias See WIMAX, page 6 GOINGS ON 18 | MARKETPLACE 19 | REAL ESTATE 21 | VIEWPOINT 12 ome City Council members would like to subsidize a grocery store downtown, but Gov. Jerry Brown’s budget, announced Monday, might pose a problem for that. Brown’s proposal to tackle the state’s $25 billion shortfall with budget cuts and tax increases includes the elimination of redevelopment agencies across the state. Brown wants to permanently shift the taxes that flow to the city’s redevelopment funds to schools and other local services, but Mountain View City Council members may object to that in their meeting next week. The council happens to be voting on whether to extend the downtown redevelopment agency (RDA), which is one of the oldest in the state — it’s set to expire after 40 years this June. Last year the council discussed extending the downtown RDA for two years to subsidize a long-desired grocery store on a cityowned lot at California and Bryant streets. Mayor Jac Siegel said that extending the downtown RDA would help create jobs downtown through its funding of future projects, including the “neighborhood serving” grocery store downtown. But with funding for basic state and city services scant these days, Brown proposes to get rid of redevelopment agencies altogether. The agencies, for the purposes of economic development, have shifted property taxes away from school, city and county services for decades. If Brown’s proposal is approved by the legislature Mountain View would lose the downtown RDA, its only redevelopment agency and one that has funded improvements since 1969. By concentrating property taxes on parking, sidewalks and lights, it helped increase downtown property from a total assessed value of $22 million in 1969 to $418 million last year. Had the downtown RDA gone away entirely last year, there would have been another $700,000 in property tax revenue for core city services such as police and the See BUDGET, page 9 K-12 spared, colleges slashed in Brown’s budget By Nick Veronin G ov. Jerry Brown’s state budget proposal drew positive reactions from school officials in local elementary, middle and high schools. However, representatives from the Foothill-De Anza College Community College District, as well as from the Community College League of California, were far less enthusiastic. While the governor announced that primary and secondary schools would not be cut under his plan, community colleges, along with both state university systems, will take cuts of $400 million and $500 million respectively. Brown has been nothing if not blunt in his attempt to slash $12.5 billion in state See SCHOOLS, page 9

Mountain View Voice 01.14.2011 - Section 1

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