Palo Alto Weekly

Spectrum - October 1, 2010

Letters

Support Measure E

Editor,

Foothill College and De Anza College are among the best community colleges in the nation. Today, community colleges are becoming increasingly important, as the cost of four-year universities can be too expensive for many families.

Due to State budget cuts, however, Foothill and De Anza Colleges have been forced to cut more thanr $20 million over the past two years. In response, course offerings have been reduced, hundreds of full- and part-time faculty and staff positions have been eliminated and administration has been cut to a bare minimum.

Thousands of students are on waiting lists for classes.

Vote yes on Measure E to provide stable local funding for Foothill and De Anza colleges to support core academic courses and ensure students can continue to receive training for future careers.

Ken Horowitz

Homer Avenue

Palo Alto

Wear bike helmets

Editor,

I bike along Bryant Street and through Mitchell Park on a daily basis when kids get out of school. I am dismayed to see how many school-aged kids have their helmets dangling from the handlebars. When I try to remind them to put their helmet on, they just laugh.

I understand that the city does not provide bicycle-safety training at schools any more. But a daily reminder by parents when their kids leave the house, and teachers, when the kids leave the school might make a difference.

The presence of a police officer might also be a good reminder that it is the law to wear a helmet if you are under 18 years old.

Kids should go online (www.neurotraumaregistry.com/Index.cfm?file=BrainMap.cfm) to look at an interactive brain map to see how brain injury affects the body: no more soccer, no more music, no more biking.

Inge Infante

Middlefield Road

Palo Alto

No time for timidity

Editor,

As a former resident of Palo Alto, I am surprised at the City Council's timid reaction to the high-speed rail proposal. Its vote of "no confidence" is as quiet and meaningless as "wind in dry grass."

The High Speed Rail Authority has no intention of engaging in rational discussion. It will do all it can to avoid any undergrounding of track through Palo Alto or any other city. Such a result would change the character and quality of the city in a most negative way with no corresponding benefit.

If the city thinks it can negotiate with the authority and Rod Diridon it's kidding itself.

I remember the 1970s when Diridon was hell bent to get light rail passed. He came to the Palo Alto council meeting to extol its virtues without mentioning the fact that the system would end at Mountain View and that nevertheless Palo Alto would help pay for it.

I get the feeling that his parents wouldn't give him a Lionel train set when he was a kid, and that he has been trying to get one ever since.

Listen to Larry Klein. He gets it. This is not a time to be timid. If you are, the train will run you over.

Scott Carey

Mission College Boulevard

Santa Clara

Rail veto power?

Editor,

I just wanted to thank the Weekly for its Sept. 17 editorial encouraging Palo Alto to sue

over the revised high-speed rail EIR. You couldn't have done a better job of highlighting this suit as a frivolous waste of money if you stamped the word "frivolous" on the first page in big red letters.

Now the state, and the court, will see these suits for what they really are — an effort to overcome the expressed will of the entire state, and not a good faith effort to ensure compliance with CEQA.

The case should be easily and quickly dismissed because Palo Alto failed to comply with the High Speed Rail Authority's clearly stated instructions — limit comments to the issues that the court ordered to be revised. Palo Alto submitted comments about everything under the sun, including matters that the court had ruled were in compliance with CEQA.

The same applies to the new suits being considered by Atherton and Menlo Park. Fifth graders could do a better job of following instructions. Despite this, the HSRA tried in good faith to address those comments.

Let's be clear about something: You people don't get veto power over the electorate of the entire state. This project will be built. Personally, it wouldn't bother me a bit if the HSRA chose not to build any stations between San Jose and Millbrae. It would serve you right.

Alan Kline

Clayton Road

Concord

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