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Tour de Menlo ride set for Aug. 20


AUGUST 10, 2011

Not for David Klein, founder of the Menlo Park Legends (Section 2)

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Stalking victim writes on college safety She will speak at Kepler’s on Aug. 25

Collaborating on the anti-stalking law was only the tip of the iceberg for her involvement in stalking prevention and advocacy for victims. By Alison Myoraku Special to the Almanac Apart from appearing on nationally televised shows ormer stalking victim, like the “Today� show and and now empowered “America’s Most Wanted,� “Safety Chick,� Kathshe has joined the Internaleen Baty is scheduled to tional Association of Chiefs speak at Kepler’s bookstore of Police, and has trained about her newest book, law enforcement officers in “College Safety 101,� at 7 intervention techniques. p.m. Thursday, Aug. 25. At various conferences, “I cover the five essenshe noticed that the messages tial keys to safety at these about stalking and personal talks,� says Ms. Baty, who safety were “negative, dauntadopted the “Safety Chick� ing, and sort of like watching handle after someone called a car wreck.� In short, frighther that. “Personal safety ening. (intuition), getting to know “I think women and your campus, partying and teenage girls respond to posisocializing, date rape drugs, tive things,� she said. “I write and the social media.� in a fun, catch-phrase way Having personally experiso that my audiences will enced the terrors of stalking remember what they’ve read, as a student at the Univerwhich is the most important Almanac photo by Michelle Le sity of California at Los thing.� Angeles, Ms. Baty directs Kathleen Baty is CEO of SafetyChick This writing technique Enterprises. her book talks to adolescent is evident in her first book, girls. “My goal is to give girls street smarts before they “A Girl’s Gotta Do What a Girl’s Gotta Do: The Ultimate Guide to Living Safe and Smart,� pubhave to learn them the hard way,� she says. The event is open to the public, with the pur- lished in 2003. The upbeat tone advises girls about chase of the book or a $10 gift card to Kepler’s. It’s safety in an accessible way, not through fear. In mid-August, she plans to reunite with Rep. free to Kepler’s members. Royce, R-Fullerton, at the National Association During her years at UCLA, where she studied of Threat Assessment Professionals conference in acting and writing, and participated on the cheerleading squad, Ms. Baty fell victim to a stalker. He Anaheim, where the two will be keynote speakstalked her all through college, and beyond, until ers. Fans of the “Safety Chick� may see another book the situation escalated to a dangerous level in May on the shelves soon. She has considered writing a 1990. At this time, the stalker confronted her at her book about “Safety Dudes,� partially inspired by home in Menlo Park, armed with a gun, and tried her three sons. to kidnap her. “I jumped a fence, and luckily got away,� she ■Go to for more information says. “It resulted in an 11-hour police stand-off, about Kathleen Baty and her work. ■ Go to for more informawhere the stalker was finally arrested.� Following this traumatizing event, she was tion on the Kepler’s event. asked by then-state senator Ed Royce, who is now in Congress, to testify in front of the California Senate, and to help him pass the nation’s first anti- N INFORMATION stalking law, later adopted by other states. At a conference for the International Association of She obliged, and thanks to her practice in pubChiefs of Police, Kathleen Baty encountered a meslic speaking at UCLA, she was able to portray sage that she now passionately advocates. In a class her feelings of living as a hunted animal for 15 led by two female police chiefs from the University of years. She described the experience of sharing her Wisconsin and University of California at Davis, the thoughts as “a huge weight being lifted from [her] topic of discussion was what to do in the event of a school shooting. shoulders.� Here, the two women explained their OUT strategy, “I thought of this as my way of getting my power or five pieces of advice: Get Out (move out of harm’s back,� she added. way). Call Out (dial 911). Hide Out (find a safe place The law “makes it a crime to engage in a pattern to hide). Keep Out (make sure the shooter is denied of behavior that harasses and/or threatens other entry). And Take Out (fight!). people,� according to the National Center for Victims of Crime.



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THE ALMANAC (ISSN 1097-3095 and USPS 459370) is published every Wednesday by Embarcadero Media, 3525 Alameda de las Pulgas, Menlo Park, CA 940256558. Periodicals Postage Paid at Menlo Park, CA and at additional mailing offices. Adjudicated a newspaper of general circulation for San Mateo County, The Almanac is delivered free to homes in Menlo Park, Atherton, Portola Valley and Woodside. Subscriptions for $60 per year or $100 per 2 years are welcome. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to the Almanac, 3525 Alameda de las Pulgas, Menlo Park, CA 94025-6558. Copyright Š2011 by Embarcadero Media, All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited.

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Woodside cuts back on tree-cutting fines ■ Were residents victims of contractor misconduct? By Dave Boyce Almanac Staff Writer


he Woodside Town Council has again chosen to dramatically reduce a resident’s fine for having large trees cut down without a permit. It’s the second such case in a month for the council, and for the second time the residents appear to be victims of misconduct by a tree-cutting contractor. The council’s July 26 decision could have cost Ittai Bareket and Nadya McCann $42,500 for the loss of one blue gum eucalyptus and four Monterey cypress trees at their home on West Maple Way. But after hearing Mr. Bareket’s story, a unanimous council reduced the penalty to the appraised value of the trees, $11,074, and suspended the fine pending completion


Bryant told the council.

of a replanting scheme at the nificant” tree, $7,500 for the Contractor misconduct? In both of the July cases, couple’s expense. second, and $10,000 for each Councilwoman Deborah Gor- one after that. A faster growing the contractors did not go to don was absent and Coun- native tree becomes significant Town Hall to pick up a permit cilman Dave Tanner, after when it measures more than before beginning work, and in both cases, the expressing opposition town would liketo suspending the ly have issued a fine, agreed with the permit, given the majority. Homeowners had difficulty following up circumstances, Three weeks earlier, with contractors after learning of the code staff said. on July 12, the council In this latreduced a $72,500 fine violation and its consequences. est case, the to $5,000 for Patrol arborist’s report, Road resident Gregory Wimmer for the felling of seven 9.5 inches in diameter at 4 feet after the fact, implies that the bay laurels, which can carry above the ground. For non-na- cypresses were probably dissudden oak death (SOD) spores, tive trees like the eucalyptus and eased and dangerous, a claim and one buckeye. In that case, Monterey cypress, the standard the contractor made explicitly in pitching the offer to cut the the fine reflected the penalty is 11.5 inches. for cutting down the buckeye. Cutting down any signifi- trees, Mr. Bareket said. In both cases, the homeownThe council let the bay laurels cant tree, whether native or slide, given the circumstances, not, requires a $60 permit ers have had difficulty following including the SOD risk. from Town Hall, rumors to up with contractors after learnWoodside’s code specifies a the contrary notwithstanding, ing of the code violation and its fine of $5,000 for the first “sig- Assistant Town Manager Kevin consequences.

Mr. Wimmer told the council that he had reminded the contractor three times about getting a permit. Mr. Bareket said the contractor told him repeatedly that he did not need a permit to cut down non-native trees. That contractor even showed him a statement to that effect on town letterhead, Mr. Bareket said. Town staff said they know of no such document. The fax number for the tree service given to Mr. Bareket led to a wine and spirits shop in San Jose, and the tree service reportedly used another company’s insurance and licensing information, according to a staff report. Why the reticence about getting a permit, given the nominal cost and the large penalties for not having one? Town staff issue tree-cutting See TREES, page 8

Making it safer to cross El Camino Real in Menlo

Steel deer sculpture under repair

By Sandy Brundage

Almanac Staff Writer

with traffic that includes buses. “It seems too draconian to comocusing on the El Camino pletely eliminate (bulb-outs) from Real portion of the proposed the plan,” Mr. Kadvany noted. downtown specific plan for With disappointment over the Menlo Park on Aug. 4, the Plan- options for what the plan describes ning Commission decided to as “east-west connectivity,” the emphasize the need to make it commission voted unanimously safer for pedestrians and bicyclists to encourage the City Council to to cross the busy street. look for more creative, aggressive The plan suggests enhancing ways to help people get across crosswalks at Oak Grove Avenue, the street safely through signal Santa Cruz Avenue, Ravenswood timing and modification, and Avenue, and other also to consider locations through different types of The commission technology such bike lanes along as countdown encourages the council El Camino Real. signals, and also The disapto look for creative creating median pointment islands and side- ways to help people get may have been walk extensions. expressed durGrade-separated across the street safely. ing the Thursday crossings would night meeting, also be added over railroad tracks but wasn’t expressly included in at the Caltrain station and near the recommendation. Middle Avenue. “I don’t want the word disapA debate over sidewalk exten- pointment in there,” Commissioner sions, otherwise known as “bulb- Henry Riggs told his colleagues. “It’s outs” that would block curbside our job as the Planning Commistraffic lanes, led to the commis- sion to vet this stuff for the council. sion’s first recommendation. By a As much as we are disappointed, 4-3 vote, with Commissioners Ben I think it’s poor form to say it that Eiref, John Kadvany, and Peipei way. Maybe ‘in order to accomplish Yu dissenting, it decided bulb- more than is proposed.’” outs should not be used along El See PLAN, page 8 Camino Real for fear of interfering

By Dave Boyce

Almanac Staff Writer



ortola Valley’s rustbrown deer of steel will be returning soon to the lawn at Triangle Park at the corner of Alpine and Portola roads. Sculptor Kristine Taylor of Corte Madera Road has the sculpture in her driveway, a few feet from where her father, Wallace “Wally” Davis, took up a gas welding torch in 1974 to build it. Ms. Taylor is repairing it, adding some 40 feet of half-inch steel rod to replace pieces that had fallen off over the years. Mr. Davis (who is deceased) used the steel rod and some artistically placed triangular steel plates to fashion the torso of a large buck, with antlers made of one-inch steel reinforcing bar. The sculpture stands about 12 feet high and weighs in at around 250 pounds, said Glenn Taylor, Ms. Taylor’s husband. To transport the sculpture to the Taylors for repair, three Almanac photo by Michelle Le

See DEER, page 8

Kristine Taylor works on the deer sculpture in the driveway of her home in Portola Valley. August 10, 2011 N The Almanac N5


College district may put $564M measure on ballot

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■ Two contested elections so far: in high school and fire protection districts.

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ix years ago, voters approved a $468 million bond measure for the San Mateo County Community College District. They will be presented with a similar opportunity this fall if the district’s board of directors approves a resolution to put a $564 million bond measure on the November ballot, a staff report said. The resolution is before the board for a vote at its 6 p.m. meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 10, at the district office at 3401 CSM Drive in San Mateo. The district’s three schools include Canada Community College in Woodside. As a school bond measure, it would need the approval of 55 percent of the voters, not the 67 percent needed to pass a municipal bond or a tax increase. The 2005 measure was approved by a 64 percent majority. A 1999 measure for $148 million fell just short of a majority, but that was before the threshold for passage was lowered to 55 percent. A recent survey predicted that a 2011 measure would pass with a majority of 65 to 67 percent, the staff report said. Three of the district’s five board members — incumbents Dave Mandelkern, Patricia Miljanich and Karen Schwarz — are running for re-election in November. High school district

In other election news, incumbent Olivia Martinez has completed the nomination process to run for re-election to the board of the Sequoia Union High School District, according to an updated candidate list from the San Mateo County Registrar of Voters. With four candidates running for three open seats, the Sequoia board election will be contested. Also running are incumbent Lorraine Rumley and two challengers: San Carlos School District board member Carrie B. Du Bois and Stanford University law school lecturer and Menlo Park resident Allen Weiner. Fire districts

The other contested race is for the Menlo Park Fire Protection District, where incumbent Bart Spencer, security consultant Robert Silano, and business executive Scott Barnum are running for two open seats on the board. The filing deadline is Friday, Aug. 12, for elections in which incumbents are running for reelection, and Wednesday, Aug. 17,


ELECT O N ( 11 (2 0 for elections in which incumbents are not running. In the Woodside Fire Protection District, board incumbent Patrick Cain has completed the nomination process for re-election. He and incumbent John Gardner have no challengers so far to their re-election to the three-member board. Town councils

In Woodside, Mayor Ron Romines has completed the procedure to run for re-election, and Councilman Dave Burow is expected to do the same later Monday, Woodside Town Clerk Janet Koelsch told the Almanac. Newcomer Eldona Hamel took out nomination papers but has not yet returned them, Ms. Koelsch said. The Portola Valley council race continues with Jeff Aalfs having declared but not completed the candidate process for the seat of Councilman Steve Toben, who said he is retiring. Incumbent Councilwoman Ann Wengert said earlier that she will file her papers this week. Go to www.AlmanacNews. com for more on the local elections set for Nov. 8. College projects

The required “list of projects” to be addressed by the community college district if the 2011 measure were to pass includes modernizing classrooms, classroom equipment and libraries, adding renewable and alternative energy systems, retrofitting for seismic and fire hazards, improving access for disabled students, removing hazardous materials, adding security cameras, and fixing leaky roofs and deteriorating infrastructure. On its 595 acres, the district includes 1.45 million square feet of instructional space, the report said. The district’s focuses are affordable education for students wanting to transfer to four-year universities and careers in nursing, engineering, biotechnology and clean energy. Go to for more information on the 2011 measure. For the 2005 bond measure, the college district’s list included upgrading nursing, health career, science, computer, and biotechnology labs; improving access for disabled students; improving seismic safety; and repairing and modernizing libraries, classrooms, and aging facilities. Go to for more on the 2005 measure. A


R EAL E STATE Q&A by Gloria Darke

Tour de Menlo ride set for Aug. 20 Hundreds of Bay Area cyclists are expected to take part in this year’s Tour de Menlo, the annual bike ride that starts and ends at Menlo-Atherton High School and offers three Midpeninsula routes of 25, 35 and 65 miles. The longer course will take riders to Belmont and then south through Woodside, Portola Valley and Los Altos on their way to the lunch stop at the Picchetti Ranch Open Space Preserve on Montebello Road in Cupertino. The return route heads north on Foothill Boulevard through Los Altos, Palo Alto and on to Menlo-Atherton High School. The elevation gain on the longer ride is about 2,500 feet. The 35 and 25 mile routes are virtually flat and are designed

to appeal to beginning and intermediate riders. Lunch will be served at the historic Picchetti Winery, where riders will be able to relax in a shaded setting overlooking Stevens Creek Reservoir. Lutticken’s, the Menlo Park deli, will cater the hearty lunch of grilled hamburgers, hot dogs, and chicken sandwiches as well as a wide variety of vegetarian options and salads. The ride is sponsored by the Rotary Club of Menlo Park and the Almanac, the community newspaper and website that serves Menlo Park, Atherton, Portola Valley and Woodside. All proceeds from the ride will benefit Rotary tutoring and need-based scholarships as well as nonprofit organizations supported by the Almanac’s

More Money or Walk Away?

annual Holiday Fund drive. The beneficiaries include: the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Peninsula, Second Harvest Food Bank, St. Anthony’s Dining Room, Shelter Network, and Youth and Family Assistance. Registration at TourdeMenlo. com continues until ride day, Aug. 20, although the deadline has passed for anyone wanting to receive a ride T-shirt. Advance registration costs $50 including lunch, which goes up to $60 on ride day. The ride is fully supported, with two rest stops and a water stop, and SAG support is offered over the complete route. For more information call Tom at (650) 223-6507.

Dear Gloria, After making a fair offer on a home, the seller still wants more money. We really like the house, but know that others have sold for thousands less. Should we continue the negotiations or simply walk away? D. Bruce Dear D. Bruce Of course, there are many factors to consider when negotiating with sellers. For instance, you should be aware if your offer is one of the first. Either of these scenarios can mean that the seller is still expecting nothing less than asking price, and you may want to walk away until the seller becomes more willing to negotiate. Once you do find a seller who is open to negotiations, it is extremely important to be informed of the market. One of

Go to for a ride description and more information.

For answers to any questions you may have on real estate, you may e-mail me at gdarke@apr. com or call 462-1111, Alain Pinel Realtors. I also offer a free market analysis of your property.

the very best ways to start negotiations with a seller whose property appears to be over priced is to have your agent collect some comparative sales data on similar homes. By presenting the seller with solid facts about the market and similar home sales, you stand a much better chance of getting his cooperation. You should also be prepared with a solid game plan and know that while price is always an important consideration, it is not the only factor. For example, you can overcome a standstill on price by shifting the focus to getting the best possible financing and terms. By negotiating on who will pay for various inspections, repairs and closing costs, you can come up with a deal that is agreeable to all parties involved and still get the house of your dreams.

Portola Valley troop honors three Eagle Scouts Submitted by Alison Krausz, Troop 64 membership coordinator. Christopher Peterson Sauer, Benjamin Ray Krausz and Connor Akio Jordan of Troop 64 in Portola Valley were each recently honored for achieving the rank of Eagle Scout. Christopher Sauer’s project involved the construction of an outdoor classroom at Corte Madera School in Portola Valley. Ben Krausz’s project was aimed at helping Mercado Global, a nonprofit fair trade organization whose goal is to teach rural indigenous women business skills to bring their crafts to market. Ben ran solar-powered calculator drives at local schools. He collected over 600 calculators, personally distributed them, and conducted training in Guatemalan Mayan communities. Connor Jordan’s project goal was to eradicate the Medusa head plant from Arastradero Preserve on behalf of Acterra, a local environmental organization. Connor searched and mapped more than 140 acres and cleared 30 acres of Medusa head. Their trail to Eagle Scout was overseen by two former scout masters, Scott Harmon and Carl Baier, as well as Troop 64’s current scout

New Eagle Scouts, from left, are Benjamin Krausz, Christopher Sauer and Connor Jordan

master, Kirt Williams. Troop 64 is sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of

Menlo Park and has more than 30 active members.


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Menlo fire district forges new deal with Palo Alto By Gennady Sheyner Embarcadero Media


he Menlo Park Fire Protection District has forged a new partnership with the Palo Alto Fire Department — an agreement that officials say strengthens the mutual-aid arrangement between the two agencies. The agreement, which the Palo Alto City Council unanimously passed Aug. 1, is scheduled to go to the fire district’s board of directors later this month and is expected to be fully implemented by the end of the year, according to Palo Alto Fire Deputy Chief Roger Bloom. The previous agreement took effect in 1999 and

officials from both agencies felt it was due for an update. The new agreement adds a truck company and a battalion chief from each agency to the automatic-aid arrangement. It also expands Palo Alto’s boundary for coverage to Bay Road in East Palo Alto and the fire district’s coverage into West Bayshore, the Palo Alto Airport and the Baylands, according to a report by Mr. Bloom. Leaders of both agencies praised the new arrangement for further boosting the region’s fire-protection services. At the Aug. 1 council meeting, Fire Chief Harold Schapelhouman of the Menlo Park Fire Protection District praised the new agreement for supporting a regional approach

to fire protection. “At the end of the day, I don’t think the people care what the fire truck says,” Chief Schapelhouman said. “They care that we’re here on time, they care that we do a good job.” Mr. Bloom agreed and said the new automatic-aid agreement “seeks to improve fire and emergency services to both communities by effectively using automatic aid as part of a regional solution for immediate assistance regardless of the jurisdiction and not affected by County lines.” The Menlo Park Fire Protection District serves Menlo Park, Atherton, East Palo Alto and unincorporated areas. Under the new agreement, which will be in effect for five years, the district would also provide water-rescue response for incidents around San Francisquito Creek and the Baylands near the Palo Alto Airport. A

Photos released of suspects in EPA killings The photos of two East Palo Alto men linked to a string of homicides in two states were released by police Aug. 4. Jaime Cardenas, 19, and Fidel Silva, 24, are wanted for homicide in Grand Junction, Colorado, and for questioning in two homicides in East Palo Alto. Catherine Fisher, 19, of Menlo Park was gunned down on July 13 while sitting in a vehicle with two acquaintances. Hugo Chavez, 26, was killed July 19 DEER continued from page 5

men from Town Hall used a flatbed truck, Ms. Taylor said. The town had it in storage in the corporation yard at Town Center after removing it from the park in the fall of 2010. It would have gotten in the way while upgrading the park for access to people with disabilities. The deer also had kids climbing on it, Assistant Town Manager Janet McDougall said in a phone interview. “It’s old and some of the welds were coming apart. We were a little bit concerned about putting

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Fidel Silva, 24, (left) and Jaime Cardenas, 19, are wanted for homicide in Grand Junction, Colorado, and for questioning in two homicides in East Palo Alto.

on Illinois Street. East Palo Alto police said they have received tips leading to Mr. Cardenas and Mr. Silva as suspects, and to a third man, Christian Fuentes, 20, who was picked up by police after a parole violation. Mr. Cardenas and Mr. Silva are considered armed and extremely dangerous. Anyone with information about their location is asked to call 911 or contact the East Palo Alto tip line at 650-409-6792.

it back without fixing it.” Ms. Taylor, the daughter of the original sculptor and a longtime welder, offered her services. Indeed, welding is what brought her and her husband together. Mr. Taylor ran a Peninsula wind surfing shop and needed someone to build wind-surfing simulators for sale all over the world, he said. She had been working for a scalemodeling company. “One day, she asked me if I had a job for her,” Mr. Taylor recalled. “I said I needed a welder. She said ‘I can learn any tool.’” She practiced for half a week and he hired her, he said. He had made the first 300 simulators; she

made the next 900, he said. “My dad taught me to use all kinds of tools,” Ms. Taylor told the Almanac. For seven years, she and her husband have welcomed the robotics team from Woodside High School into their garage and well-equipped machine shop. She helps them with the tricky business of welding aluminum and he offers help and advice on using a metal lathe. When the deer goes back, Ms. McDougall said, it will be located so as to discourage climbing and encourage recognition of what it is: public art.


According to the staff report, the FIA may now be out by Aug. 22.

Photos courtesy of the East Palo Alto Police Department.

continued from page 5

The online guide to Menlo Park businesses

At the Sugar Shack

The commission’s recommendations will go to the City Council, which ultimately decides the final shape of the specific plan. Meanwhile, the fiscal impact analysis (FIA) that was supposed to accompany review of the specific plan still wasn’t ready. Its release was delayed to give the consultant time to analyze the plan’s impact on school and fire protection districts, staff said.

8 N The Almanac NAugust 10, 2011



N INFORMAT ION Go to to review the specific plan. The Planning Commission continues its review on Monday, Aug. 22, when it’s expected to consider aspects of the plan related to senior housing, open space, and facade heights, among other topics. The meeting starts at 7 p.m. in the council chambers at the Civic Center at 701 Laurel St.

Hollis Stahl used her BlackBerry to snap this picture of kids enjoying a cartoon on TV and a snack at the Sugar Shack in downtown Menlo Park.

TREES continued from page 5

permits without going to the site and inspecting the targeted trees, Mr. Bryant said. The town may require an arborist’s report “if the information submitted by the applicant is insufficient to determine the health of the significant trees or any danger the significant trees may pose,” he added. In October 2009, the council fined Dr. Eric and Jacquie Weiss $10,000, reduced from $92,500, for cutting down 10 heritage oaks without first obtaining a permit. In that case, Dr. Weiss said he had been mistaken about the minimum diameter that made an oak tree significant. Too many of these cases involve people not knowing the rules, Councilman Peter Mason said at the July 26 meeting. Mr. Mason then wondered aloud about ways of reminding residents, perhaps via the town’s website, of the need to obtain a permit before cutting a large tree. During public comment, neighbors spoke in support of leniency for Mr. Bareket and Ms. McCann, and of the prevalence of the notion that a permit is not required to cut down non-native trees. Inconsistent penalties

One commonality in all three cases: the penalty per tree has been different every time. The council struggled with

a desire to be consistent while enforcing the ordinance. “We have yet another instance where a property owner has relied on a company (for advice),” Mayor Ron Romines said in opening the deliberations. “What is an appropriate fine in this circumstance, or do we waive the fine altogether?” “I’d like to see some continuity and some consistency in how we rule on it,” Councilwoman Sue Boynton said. There should be a fine, said Councilman Tanner. “I’d much rather see the money going into replacing trees rather than going to the town,” said Councilman Dave Burow. “If we’re compelling the homeowner to spend money, that’s (a) fine enough in my opinion.” Mr. Romines noted that Mr. Bareket and Ms. McCann had reached out to their neighbor, Barbara Hinman. In March, Ms. Hinman told the council that she was “furious” at the loss of her privacy by the tree cutting, but in May, she wrote to tell of the outreach and asked the council to be lenient to her neighbors. “I get the sense,” said Councilwoman Anne Kasten, “that a real dialog and community is being built out of this.” The council gave the couple six months to replant such that it provides screening and includes at least three trees. The council asked the town staff to review the replanting plan, particularly on the choice of plants. A



Portola Valley driver charged with felony DUI Carter Madsen Boyce, 19, of Portola Valley has been charged with felony drunken driving in a July 30 incident in which he was at the wheel of a 2007 BMW when it crashed into a tree at about 1:15 a.m. at Westridge and Mapache drives, authorities said. A 19-year-old passenger, also of Portola Valley, suffered

a fractured leg, which is why Mr. Boyce is being charged with a felony, said Detective Sgt. Linda Gibbons of the San Mateo County Sheriffâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Office. Authorities are not releasing the passengerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s name. Mr. Boyce was taken to San Mateo County jail, but is out on bail, Ms. Gibbons said. The

case is now with the District Attorneyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Office, she said. The Sheriffâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Office is not releasing an estimate on the speed of the vehicle before the crash, but the car does have â&#x20AC;&#x153;severe front end damageâ&#x20AC;? and the passenger had to be â&#x20AC;&#x153;extricatedâ&#x20AC;? by medics from the Woodside Fire Protection District, Ms. Gibbons said.

Judge may rule on Atherton layoffs this week By Sandy Brundage Almanac Staff Writer


fter weeks of waiting, the future employment of 11 Atherton employees may be decided in San Mateo County Superior Court on Thursday, Aug. 11. The town of Atherton had planned to lay off six employees on July 15 as part of its strategy to outsource the building and planning departments. In addition to those six layoffs, one employee retired and another resigned, while five public works maintenance employees received job extensions through the end of August. But the layoffs were challenged in court by Teamsters Union Local 856 under a section of state government code that the union says makes it illegal for the town to outsource the jobs it has targeted, according to union spokesman Peter Finn. The court granted a temporary restraining

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order last month, blocking the layoffs until Thursdayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hearing. A similar case in Orange County Superior Court led to a preliminary injunction in July against outsourcing of city services in Costa Mesa. According to the firm representing the employee union in that case, the lawsuit cited California Government Codes 37103 and 53060, which it interprets as prohibiting the use of private contractors for general services performed satisfactorily by city employees. Those are the same government code sections cited in the Atherton lawsuit. But City Attorney Bill Conners said the two cases donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have much in common, primarily because the Teamsters union signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that the city could lay off employees and eliminate positions when necessary due to economic conditions. In the Costa Mesa case, he said, the city outsourced without first

trying to negotiate, treating it as a management right. â&#x20AC;&#x153;(The Teamsters) contracted away these rights and now they want to litigate. To your point, we have negotiated the impacts of layoffs and the fact that we intend to contract out. The Union has not presented any financially viable alternative to outsourcing, so the Town has no other viable option,â&#x20AC;? Mr. Conners wrote in an email to the Almanac. According to court documents, the union argues that the MOU expired on June 30. Athertonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s legal defense contends in its filing that the agreement is still in effect despite the expiration date, because no new contract has been put in place yet. Possible outcomes for Thursdayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hearing include the judge granting a permanent restraining order, as requested by the union, or lifting the temporary injunction to allow the layoffs to proceed, as the town asked. A


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August 10, 2011 N The Almanac N9


Law enforcement funds restored Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s good news and bad news out of Sacramento for the extra Sheriffâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Office squad car that patrols Woodside and Portola Valley during the day. With the signing of SB 89, Gov. Jerry Brown restored the supplement that cities and towns have been receiving since 2001 to augment the costs of laws enforcement, the Citizens Option for Public Safety (COPS) program. Woodside and Portola Valley have been using COPS money to pay for a second deputy sheriff in a car.

But the bill also takes the last share of vehicle license fee revenues for cities and towns. â&#x20AC;&#x153;For Woodside, this means that we get the $100,000 targeted for safety services, but lose about $25,000 in discretionary general fund monies, creating a new hole in the budget,â&#x20AC;? Town Manager Susan George said in her latest report to the Town Council. The state â&#x20AC;&#x153;tookâ&#x20AC;? $131.1 million in vehicle license fees and from that reallocated $72.9 million to safety services, Ms. George said.

Things could still change, she added. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We need to keep this on our watch list.â&#x20AC;? Portola Valley also has its $100,000 restored, in exchange for a loss of vehicle license fee revenue of $14,500, Stacie Nerdahl, Portola Valleyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s administrative services officer, told the Almanac. Facing the loss of state funding, the town councils had been ready to use the money already allocated â&#x20AC;&#x201D; about $118,000 in each town â&#x20AC;&#x201D; to pay for a second deputy on a motorcycle, a more affordable alternative. â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Dave Boyce

A great bike ride!

County workshop on climate action plan San Mateo County will hold a public workshop Tuesday, Aug. 9, on its recently launched climate action plan. The meeting will run from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Fair Oaks Community Center, 2600 Middlefield Road in North Fair Oaks. County staff will discuss the plan to increase energy efficiency and reduce green-

house gas emissions. The public is encouraged to share opinions and ideas. The county will outline a new general plan and zoning code, which will include an energy and climate change element aimed at reaching the planâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s goals. Visit for more information about the project.

David Finckel & Wu Han, Artistic Directors


THE 2011 FESTIVAL: Through Brahms


July 22â&#x20AC;&#x201C;August 13, 2011 / Atherton Menlo Park Palo Alto

the quartets in context Orion String Quartet Program I: August 4 | 8:00 p.m. Program II: August 7 | 4:00 p.m.

Saturday, August 20

In a pair of programs, the Orion String Quartet examines the string quartets of Brahms alongside those by Beethoven, Webern, and Kirchner.

65, 46 & 35

mile routes with a few hills Ride Day Registration 8 to 1O a.m. Menlo-Atherton High School

555 MiddleďŹ eld Road Atherton, CA, 94027 Sponsored by

The Rotary Club of Menlo Park and

David Shifrin, clarinet August 8 | 8:00 p.m.


Register online at 10 N The Almanac NAugust 10, 2011

carte blanche concert iii


Shifrinâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Music@Menlo debut performance includes Brahmsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s First Clarinet Sonata and clarinet trios by Brahms and Max Bruch performed with David Finckel and Wu Han.

carte blanche concert iv Jeffrey Kahane, piano August 10 | 8:00 p.m. Kahane returns for a collaborative program performing works by Chopin and FaurĂŠ and the rarely heard piano four-hands version of Brahmsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Organ Chorale Preludes. FOR TICKETS AND INFORMATION:


Packard Pediatric Weight Control Program

Packard Children’s Hospital

Center for Healthy Weight

Parents & Families

Stanford School of Medicine


Sam Feldman got healthier working with the internationally recognized pediatric weight loss program at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. By taking the best science about weight loss in children and making it work with real-world families, we help kids change the way they look, feel and think. As Sam’s weight and body mass index declined, his self-confidence skyrocketed. And the number he’s most proud of isn’t on the scale: it’s the seven-minute mile he ran in gym – half his previous time. With healthy habits and everyday strategies, Sam is on the right track for life. To learn more about the Packard Pediatric Weight Control Program, visit or call 650 -725- 4424. August 10, 2011 N The Almanac N11


Rose Yuranovich Rose Yuranovich, Born in Chicago Ill. July 3,1921. Rose came to Calif. in her early 20â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s with her parents. Before coming to California she attended high school and ďŹ nishing school in Europe. While in Europe she met her husband to be Karl Yuranovich. They were separated for the duration of the war. She reunited with Karl and was married in Paris, France and they returned to make their home in Los Angeles. She was employed as an ofďŹ ce manager in the Aircraft-Space industry for 25 years. Rose lived with her family in Palos Verdes until her retirement. She then moved with her husband to Lake Tahoe. In 1989 her husband passed away, and she moved to the Atherton, Menlo Park area to be near her children and grandson. Rose loved the area and created a very fulďŹ lling retirement. While in Menlo Park she enjoyed being part of the

Allied Arts Guild, and volunteering at Filoli. Rose was often seen walking her beloved chocolate Lab around Menlo Park. Her last years were spent at her daughterâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s home in Atherton. She is survived by her daughter Rosie Garlock, son in-law William Garlock, grandson Jason Garlock and his wife Emily. A Memorial service will be held on Aug 11, 2011 at 1p.m. at the church of the Nativity in Menlo Park. In lieu of ďŹ&#x201A;owers gifts in memory of Rose Yuranovich can be made to the Alzheimer Foundation. PA I D


Phoebe Elizabeth Mitchell March 3, 1917 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; July 15, 2011

Phoebe Mitchell, 94, passed away peacefully July 15, 2011. She was born March 3, 1917 in Burlington, Iowa. World War II brought Phoebe to San Francisco when telephone operators were recruited to help the war effort. She fell in love with â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Cityâ&#x20AC;? and US Army Sgt. John Mitchell of Elizabeth, NJ. They were married Dec 1, 1945 at the Presidio Chapel. John and Phoebe lived in Elizabeth NJ, Berkeley CA, and then Redwood City. They joined the Menlo Park Presbyterian Church where she taught Sunday school and sang in the choir for 40 years. Phoebe was awarded Lifetime PTA Membership. After losing her beloved John to cancer in 1966, Phoebe found a career in the Canada College library. She raised her 3 teenage daughters, later welcoming their husbands and helped raise 4 grandchildren. After retiring she joined Presbyterian Women, enjoyed playing the piano, Scrabble games, crossword puzzles, travel, and reading. She loved entertaining in her home where she served family favorites, apple pie or Swedish meatballs on Christmas Eve.

Phoebe is cherished by her 3 girls and their husbands, Nancy White (Bob) of Syracuse NY, Priscilla Repetti (Steve) of Cupertino, Jane Mitchell-Little (Jeffrey) of Menlo Park. She was a loving Gramma to Jamin Elizabeth Repetti (1978-1992), Spencer Little, Emily Little and Samantha Repetti. Phoebe is also survived by nephews, Jack Freedman (Rosemary) of Huntsville, AL and Jerry D. Fifer (Elaine) of Los Altos and their children Lynn Rauma, Brad Fifer, and Kristin Ayers. A memorial service will be held Friday September 9, 2011 at 11:00am at Menlo Park Presbyterian Church, 950 Santa Cruz Ave. Menlo Park CA 94025. In lieu of ďŹ&#x201A;owers, please send donations to Friends of the Menlo Park Library at 800 Alma St., Menlo Park, CA 94025, PA I D


Aiming to raise $365,000 for Habitat for Humanity By Sandy Brundage Almanac Staff Writer


month-long raffle kicks off Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerageâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 13th annual affordable housing fundraising campaign. All proceeds from the raffle go to Habitat for Humanity. According to a company spokesperson, last year the campaign raised $105,000, enough money to build 32 homes for lowincome families. This year, they hope to raise $365,100. The raff le runs through Aug. 31 and costs $2 per ticket, which are available at any Coldwell office. Prizes include $5,000 donated by Princeton Capital; gift certificates; and hotel stays. Go to coldwellbankerhabitat. com or call 925-275-3085 for more information.

Chamber announces August mixer This monthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Chamber of Commerce mixer comes to Menlo Park courtesy of Peninsula Volunteers. The event runs from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at 800 Middle Ave. on Wednesday, Aug. 24.

Google buys Menlo Parkâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s The Dealmap A Menlo Park company just joined the Google family on Aug. 2. The Dealmap, which opened in May 2010 and aggregates local

We Buy Gold, Jewelry, Diamonds & Silver, Highest Prices Paid


discounts, sold to Google for an undisclosed amount of money months after the online search engine giant tried and failed to buy a similar business, Groupon. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re passionate about helping people save money while having great local experiences, and in Google weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve found the perfect partner that shares this passion, as well as our vision and strategy,â&#x20AC;? The Dealmap said in a statement on its website. The company claims more than 2 million users and earned a spot in the Wall Street Journalâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Top 10 Apps of 2010.â&#x20AC;?

Restaurants wanted Dining out can help seniors dine in. Peninsula Volunteers is asking local restaurants to sign up for its second annual â&#x20AC;&#x153;Bay Area Dine Outâ&#x20AC;? fundraising campaign. Participating restaurants agree to donate a percentage of sales on Oct. 4. Proceeds go to the nonprofitâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Meals on Wheels program that delivers 1,300 meals each week to the countyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s senior citizens and disabled adults. So far, eight Menlo Park restaurants, including Luttickenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s and Oak City Bar and Grill, are on board. To be included in the printed pamphlet advertising the campaign, restaurants must sign up by Monday, Aug. 15. Call Meals on Wheels manager Marilyn Baker-Venturini at 326-0665, ext. 232, for more information.

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12 N The Almanac NAugust 10, 2011



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Jonson opens health management practice in Portola Valley

N POLICE CALLS This information is from the Atherton and Menlo Park police departments and the San Mateo County Sheriffâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Office. Under the law, people charged with offenses are considered innocent until convicted. MENLO PARK Grand theft reports: â&#x2013; Loss estimated at $11,000 in loss of diamond necklace possibly taken from suitcase while at Minneapolis airport, Willow Road, Aug. 2. â&#x2013;  Loss estimated at $1,000 in theft of wallet from an unlocked vehicle, Oak Lane, July 29. Fraud report: Initial loss of $9,112 in redirection of payroll deposits but some money recovered, Hamilton Court, Aug. 4.

Residential burglary reports: â&#x2013; Loss of $1,060 in break-in and theft of jewelry and four pairs of jeans, Terminal Ave., July 29. â&#x2013;  Loss estimated at $400 in break-in and theft of video game console. Commercial burglary report: Unknown loss after window smashed and laptop computer stolen, Alma St., Aug. 1. Indecent exposure report: Male in his 30s, 600 block of Santa Cruz Ave., Aug. 2. PORTOLA VALLEY Vandalism report: Loss estimated at $2,000 in damage to convertible top, though not clear where car was when damage occurred, Alpine Road and Willowbrook Drive, Aug. 2.

Good for Business. Good for You. Good for the Community. NOTICE OF PUBLIC MEETING AND NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING CITY OF MENLO PARK PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING OF AUGUST 22, 2011 NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Planning Commission of the City of Menlo Park, California, is scheduled to review the following items: PUBLIC MEETING ITEMS Architectural Control/Teresa Marks/2180 Sand Hill Road: Request for Architectural Control to add 180 square feet of gross floor area to the ground floor of an existing four-story commercial building, located in the C-1(X) (Administrative and Professional, Restrictive; Conditional Development) zoning district. The proposed expansion would be located within the existing overhang of the second floor. NOTICE IS HEREBY FURTHER GIVEN that said Planning Commission will hold a public hearing on public hearing items in the Council Chambers of the City of Menlo Park, located at 701 Laurel Street, Menlo Park, on Monday, August 22, 2011, 7:00 p.m. or as near as possible thereafter, at which time and place interested persons may appear and be heard thereon. If you challenge this item in court, you may be limited to raising only those issues you or someone else raised at the public hearing described in this notice, or in written correspondence delivered to the City of Menlo Park at, or prior to, the public hearing. The project file may be viewed by the public on weekdays between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Friday, with alternate Fridays closed, at the Department of Community Development, 701 Laurel Street, Menlo Park. Please call the Planning Division if there are any questions and/or for complete agenda information (650) 330-6702.

Courtney Jonson of Wooside has opened in Portola Valley a preventative and personal health management practice she calls Advance Wellness Group. Her office is at Portola Valley Village Square, 884 Portola Road, Suite A-5, right next to Parkside Grill. Ms. Jonson, a licensed health care practitioner, says she offers laboratory diagnostic testing, personalized treatment plans, herbal medicine, acupuncture,

clinical nutrition, and help with meal planning, grocery tours, and food coaching. She says her specialties include h e a l t h y Courtney Jonson metabolism, womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hormonal health, digestive health,



childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wellness, and chronic illness. Ms. Jonson, who grew up in Portola Valley and Woodside, says she likes to ride her horse, run on country trails, and play tennis. Go to advancedwellnessgroup. com to see her website.

C H I L D R E N â&#x20AC;&#x2122; S H O S P I TA L

)/, "#&8-&."(#0,-#.3 Lucile Packard Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Hospital offers classes and seminars designed to foster good health and enhance the lives of parents and children. PEDIATRIC WEIGHT CONTROL PROGRAM .,.." &&1#." '#&3-"0#),&(/.#)(&1#!".'(!'(. *,)!,'.".*,)').-"&."3.#(!(2,#-"#.- ),)0,1#!"."#&,(( ."#, '#&#-),."(A97) "#&,("#0&)(!.,'1#!".&)--.",)/!"."#- *,)!,'6(*,(.-&)-1#!"..)),/,,(.&3(,)&&#(! ), &&!,)/*-#( )." (!&#-"*(#-" *#-&#'#. &&?>9@;>==;=.)3 ),'),#( ),'.#)(),.),!#-., 


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STAYING CLOSE WHILE STANDING BACK: THE ART OF PARENTING OUR TEENS WHILE THEY LEARN HOW TO NAVIGATE LIFE /&#.4!,,.),) )/,B,..),.C*,)!,'")-.-(0(#(!$/-. ), *,(.-) )&-(.-(.(-,#-/--#)(1#&& )/-)(13-.)%*)*( )''/(#.#)(&#(-.1(*,(.-(."#,"#&,(-1&&-")1.)-.,#%&( .1(*,(.8--#, ),- .3(."#,.(8--#, ),2#.'(. )(3.),< @ 995A <9*' 

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Si usted necesita mĂĄs informaciĂłn sobre este proyecto, por favor llame al 650-330-6702, y pregunte por un asistente que hable espaĂąol.



Deanna Chow, Senior Planner

C H I L D R E Nâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S

Menlo Park Planning Commission


August 4, 2011

PUBLISHED: August 10, 2011

Visit our Web site for Planning Commission public hearing, agenda, and staff report information:

â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Alison Myoraku


August 10, 2011 N The Almanac N13

Serving Menlo Park, Atherton, Portola Valley, and Woodside for 44 years.

Editor & Publisher Tom Gibboney

Editorial Managing Editor Richard Hine News Editor Renee Batti Lifestyles Editor Jane Knoerle Senior Correspondents Marion Softky, Marjorie Mader Staff Writers Dave Boyce, Sandy Brundage Contributors Barbara Wood, Kate Daly, Katie Blankenberg Special Sections Editors Carol Blitzer, Sue Dremann Photographer Michelle Le

Design & Production Design Director Raul Perez Designers Linda Atilano, Gary Vennarucci

Advertising Vice President Sales & Marketing Walter Kupiec Display Advertising Sales Heather Hanye Real Estate Manager Neal Fine Real Estate and Advertising Coordinator Diane Martin Published every Wednesday at 3525 Alameda De Las Pulgas, Menlo Park, Ca 94025 Newsroom: (650) 223-6525 Newsroom Fax: (650) 223-7525 Advertising: (650) 854-2626 Advertising Fax: (650) 854-3650 e-mail news and photos with captions to: e-mail letters to: The Almanac, established in September, 1965, is delivered each week to residents of Menlo Park, Atherton, Portola Valley and Woodside and adjacent unincorporated areas of southern San Mateo County. The Almanac is qualified by decree of the Superior Court of San Mateo County to publish public notices of a governmental and legal nature, as stated in Decree No. 147530, issued November 9, 1969. Subscriptions are $60 for one year and $100 for two years.

N WHAT’S YOUR VIEW? All views must include a home address and contact phone number. Published letters will also appear on the web site,, and occasionally on the Town Square forum.

TOWN SQUARE FORUM Post your views on the Town Square forum at EMAIL your views to: and note this it is a letter to the editor in the subject line. MAIL or deliver to: Editor at the Almanac, 3525 Alameda de las Pulgas, Menlo Park, CA 94025.

Ideas, thoughts and opinions about

local issues from people in our community. Edited by Tom Gibboney.

Finally, a parking plan for Menlo


n the end, the process was so simple it is hard to believe it took this long. But two weeks ago, the City Council did what no council before them had done — agree to install a parking system in two downtown plazas that finally will make it possible for shoppers to stay longer than two hours without moving their vehicle or getting a ticket. The new meters actually will be pedestals that will accept cash and credit cards to park in a numbered spot. The first two hours of parking will be free in the two plazas, but EDITO RIA L users will have the all-important option of purchasing an The opinion of The Almanac unlimited amount of additional time. A three-hour appointment will no longer generate a mad dash to move the car as the second hour approaches, as long as extra time was purchased at one of the meter/pedestals. When motorists check in at one of the six pedestals, they simply need to note their slot number and insert cash or a credit card. Similar systems are in place all over the Bay Area. The new system will be installed at Plaza 1, at Oak Grove Avenue and El Camino Real behind the post office, and at Plaza 5, off Crane Street and Santa Cruz Avenue. City officials expect the meters to be in place by October, well before the holiday season, which should make downtown merchants very happy. There have been many occasions when a frustrated merchant complained to city officials or the City Council about losing a customer who was livid after receiving a $35 ticket for parking one or two minutes beyond the two-hour time limit in the plazas. One business, Boutique 4 on Santa Cruz Avenue, said it closed after five years due to aggressive parking enforcement. Tamara Michel, a co-owner of the boutique, told the Almanac, “We had many customers who refused to come

downtown to shop.” It will take time for the city to decide whether to expand the pedestal program beyond the two plazas, which will cost about $60,000 to implement. But if the new system works out as hoped, the city will see some parking revenue and perhaps some additional sales tax revenue generated by customers who were not driven elsewhere to shop by the city’s parking enforcement officers.

District shift won’t hurt Belle Haven


hen the boundaries of congressional districts represented by Anna Eshoo and Jackie Speier were released by the California Citizens Redistricting Commission, howls of protest went up over a decision to split Belle Haven away from Menlo Park, despite its long history as a key part of the city. Some members of the Menlo Park City Council were unhappy. Kirsten Keith said, “It doesn’t make any sense. I hope they will revisit this.” Certainly at first glance it looks like a bad decision, but we suspect the commission’s goal was to group the similar communities of East Palo Alto and Belle Haven with Redwood City, all of which have much more in common that they do with Atherton and the Menlo Park neighborhoods west of U.S. 101. The separation applies only to the congressional districts, traditionally represented by Democrats who get along with each other. In the state Assembly and Senate districts, Belle Haven will continue to be part of Menlo Park. In the long run, we doubt that Belle Haven and East Palo Alto will see much impact from the commission’s decision on the congressional districts. The commission will issue its final report Aug. 15.

LETTE RS Our readers write

Disappointed in Stanford stance on trail Editor: The following letter was written to Stanford President John Hennessy. As a Stanford alumna, I am appalled at the behavior that I see from the university as it pertains to the Stanford-Alpine Road Trail. That this issue is once again being discussed with the Board of Supervisors of San Mateo County is ridiculous. It is wasting everyone’s time and money. As I said recently to the San Mateo County supervisors, that the Stanford-Alpine Road trail is once again being discussed as a substitute for one of two recreational trails that Stanford made an agreement with Santa Clara County to build crossing Stanford University lands some years ago,

CALL the Viewpoint desk at 223-6507.

14 N The Almanac NAugust 10, 2011

See LETTERS, next page

Lucille John James

Our Regional Heritage King James Wieekie and Queen Lucille John presided over the 1932 May Day celebration at Woodside School.


L E TTE R S Continued from previous page

is atrocious, morally wrong and thoroughly embarrassing to the university. That Larry Horton, an officer of the university, is trying to once again gain the support of the San Mateo County supervisors, when they have already rejected it because of unanimous public support against the trail, is disconcerting. Mr. Horton is trying to make the supervisors party to Stanford getting out of itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s original agreement. I find it hard to believe that Stanford, an institution held in such high regard, would be involved with such shenanigans. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m sure you cannot be aware of all the workings at Stanford and that not all is brought to your attention. I would hope that you would weigh in on this matter and do what is morally correct. I would hope that you would uphold the reputation of Stanford and uphold the agreement that Stanford originally made with Santa Clara County to build two recreational trails across Stanford lands. Diana Gerba Class of 1988

Civility lost at Planning Commission meeting Editor: While watching online broadcast of the July 28 Menlo Park Planning Commission review of the downtown portion of the specific plan, I was struck by the incivility of some of our citizens. City staff, planning commissioners, and some who made public comments were courteous and informative, including balanced points made by the owners of Santa Cruz Avenue shops Alys Grace and Cheeky Monkey. But mostly there was a vocal contingent speaking against the plan, often with rudeness and alarmism. The same contingent appeared also to applaud and boo many comments, in defiance of the commission chairâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s request for order. From what I could tell online, many in this group were relatively senior citizens, representing themselves as â&#x20AC;&#x153;preservationistsâ&#x20AC;? protecting Menlo Park from the forces of change. They spoke with much the same â&#x20AC;&#x153;us versus themâ&#x20AC;? rhetoric heard on Sundays at the farmersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; market and laid to rest, at least for me, at the meeting. The spokespersons for change appeared to be a younger, more civil crowd. Is there a generation gap dividing Menlo Park? Susan Gillman College Avenue, Menlo Park

A better option for Stanford trail money By Lennie Roberts

tola Valley and unincorporated San Mateo s noted in the Almanacâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s editorial County as well as Stanford and throughout last week, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Is third time a charm for the region would benefit. Stanford trail?â&#x20AC;? the thorny issue of A third candidate is restoring the Lower â&#x20AC;&#x153;fixingâ&#x20AC;? the sidewalk/trail along Alpine Alpine Road bike/pedestrian trail/sidewalk Road may have a sensible resoluin a more modest, cost-effective way tion that will benefit many more than Stanfordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s original overblown people than Stanfordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s original design, which drew fierce opposition proposal, which was a classic case five years ago. of overkill. Ladera residents and businesses The first step would be for the were rightfully concerned that the Board of Supervisors to reiterate expanded 12-foot-wide, two-way trail GUEST their endorsement of a regional OPINION with 2-foot shoulders on either side trails grants program. This would required moving Alpine Road into the ensure use of all the $10.4 million that landscaped median at the Ladera Shopper, Stanford has offered as mitigation for loss and closer to Aliso Way as well as destroyof recreational opportunities due to cam- ing many oaks and the rural ambience of pus expansion. the existing trail. A regional trails grant, as outlined by San Residents of Stanford Weekend Acres Mateo County Parks Director Dave Hol- were alarmed at the safety hazards caused land in 2007, would enable the full $10.4 by increased numbers of trail users of million to be spent on several badly needed varying skills and speeds on an over-wide trail projects in our area. trail crossing many driveways and streets. In addition to the Lower Alpine Road An urban standard supersize trail would trail, one deserving candidate is restoring give users a false sense of security as speedUpper Alpine Trail, which was damaged by ing vehicles in this area regularly veer off landslides over a decade ago. This would the road and crash into railings and fences provide a safe way for people to walk, run, near Bishop Lane â&#x20AC;&#x201D; most recently on Aug. bicycle or ride horses up to Skyline away 2. from curvy, dangerous La Honda, Old La Environmental groups were vehemently Honda, and/or Page Mill roads. opposed to the destruction of sensitive Another candidate is building a new creek and riparian habitats by the protrail paralleling Arastradero Road between posed armoring of the creek bank in many Alpine and Page Mill Roads, where walk- places, and the unnecessary massive, costly ers, runners, cyclists, and equestrians grading into the steep hillside opposite would finally be able to traverse safely. Bishop and Wildwood. While this trail is across the creek in Santa Over 1,500 people signed a petition at the Clara County, many residents of Por- time, opposing the costly overkill sidewalk


Boorish behavior at downtown meeting Editor: I attended the July 28 Planning Commission meeting to learn more about the downtown proposals described in the draft specific plan, and to voice my opinion during the public comment period. However, due to a well-organized and vocal opposition, I became uncomfortable and chose not to express my views. Commissioner Vincent Bresslerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s repeated requests to hold applause and audible comments went unheeded, despite that being proper decorum. Why have we lost our ability to listen to one another with respect and without judgment? In my 30 years of working at Silicon Valley companies, I have attended more meetings than I can count. It would be completely inappropriate and in many cases, against corporate policies, to exhibit such behavior. Some at the meeting apparently thought it was their â&#x20AC;&#x153;rightâ&#x20AC;? to disregard meeting etiquette and the requests of the Planning Commission chair. Yes, freedom of speech is a valued right; but in our democratic society, everyone

should have an equal voice in decision-making. Some meeting attendees opposed to the downtown proposals spoke of retaining Menlo

expansion as inappropriate mitigation for loss of recreational opportunities caused by Stanfordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s campus development. It should be obvious that San Mateo and Santa Clara counties have a shared interest in providing safe, cost effective facilities for walkers, runners, cyclists, and equestrians. In order to maximize the benefits to all these users, San Mateo first needs to reject the Stanford offer as it currently only allows the proffered $10.4 million to be spent on the three-mile stretch of the existing Alpine Trail in the county unincorporated area. The two counties then need to work collaboratively to provide the greatest benefit to the most users through the innovative regional trails grants program. San Mateo County Supervisor Don Horsley, and Liz Kniss of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors, represent the communities around Stanford, and have a great opportunity to resolve this protracted standoff. A less elaborate, environmentally friendly, Lower Alpine Trail will make it possible to fund other beneficial trail improvements in the region, such as Upper Alpine and Arastradero, and could provide maintenance funding as well. This regional approach would better comply with Stanfordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s obligation under the General Use Permit to provide true recreational trails. Lennie Roberts is the San Mateo County legislative advocate for the Committee for Green Foothills.

Parkâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;village-likeâ&#x20AC;? charm. To me, a village conjures images of friendly and neighborly residents. If that real village character is valued, then I hope the atmosphere

at future forums will allow all Menlo Park residents to express their viewpoints freely. Janet Gilmore Middle Avenue

HEREâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S TO YOUR GOOD HEALTH... WE CANâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;T WAIT TO MEET YOU! BĂŠatrice Levinson Naturopath Expands to Menlo Park after 15 years on the Monterey Peninsula. -ENLO!VENUEs3UITEs 


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16 N The Almanac NAugust 10, 2011

The Almanac 08.10.2011 - Section 1  

Section 1 of the August 10.2011 edition of the Almanac

The Almanac 08.10.2011 - Section 1  

Section 1 of the August 10.2011 edition of the Almanac