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What would it take to offer overnight parking to homeless students at Foothill College? $830K and political will.

Foothill College president discusses local feasibility, cost even as a group of community colleges comes out against the state bill

Foothill College President Thuy Nguyen says that the state Legislature needs to look carefully at the financial and operational challenges associated with Assembly Bill 302. Photo by Sinead Chang.

Nearly 20 community colleges and districts as well as the Community College League of California and Association of California Community College Administrators have formally come out in opposition to a state bill that would allow homeless students to sleep overnight in campus parking lots.

Locally, the Foothill-De Anza Community College District is remaining publicly neutral but watching closely as Assembly Bill 302, which was proposed by Assemblyman Marc Berman, D-Palo Alto, makes its way through the state Legislature.

In an interview with the Weekly, Foothill College President Thuy Nguyen called Berman's effort "admirable" but said questions remain about the financial and operational challenges created by the bill.

"The question is whether this is a good idea that should be required of all," she said.

Rolling out safe overnight parking at Foothill would not be as easy as some people think, Nguyen said. The college would have to increase its limited night-time security, potentially by contracting out the work, and consider how to accommodate students who might have children or families who would sleep in a vehicle with them, she said. The bill would also require community colleges to connect homeless students using the parking facilities with housing, food and financial resources.

"There's way more complication than one would initially think of something as ... simple as, 'If they can park during the day, why can't they park overnight?'" Nguyen said.

Preliminarily, the Foothill-De Anza Community College District estimates that implementation of the bill could cost its campuses about $830,000 each per year for additional security, custodial support, fencing, signage and, if a parking lot is not available close to bathrooms, portable toilets. This cost could vary greatly depending on the level of infrastructure spending required to support each parking area, according to Foothill.

If the Commission on State Mandates determines AB 302's requirements to be a reimbursable state mandate, the state would reimburse community colleges. But that determination is not guaranteed.

"One of the challenges with the bill for many community colleges, including Foothill, is the financial one. Where are we going to find the money?" Nguyen asked, suggesting that local tech companies or wealthy donors could potentially contribute.

Senate Committee staff have recommended the bill be amended to allow community colleges to opt out if they show they are addressing student homelessness in other ways, including by providing emergency housing grants, hotel vouchers and rapid re-housing referral services. Exempt colleges would have to report to the Community College Chancellor's Office on the services provided to homeless students, the number and type of students served and whether they remain in school or graduate.

Other amendments include adding a Dec. 31, 2022 sunset date; moving up the implementation date from July 1, 2020, to April 1, 2020; requiring that students who use the lots be enrolled in at least six units per semester; and requiring the Community College Chancellor's Office to conduct a follow-up survey on student homelessness and release the results by 2022.

The California Faculty Association, California School Employees Association, the Faculty Association of California Community Colleges and Student Senate for California Community Colleges all formally support AB 302.

At a summit on student homelessness at Foothill in June, students, faculty, community leaders and elected officials spent a day brainstorming short- and long-term solutions to the issue. Ideas ranged from the feasible — providing 24-hour study areas and laundry services and expanding a campus food pantry — to the more ambitious, including building student housing and fining owners of vacant "ghost houses."

During the summit, students who have experienced homelessness urged their campus leaders and elected officials not to shy away from out-of-the-box solutions that will help struggling students in the near term.

As a result of the summit, Nguyen said Foothill plans to pilot a smartphone application that will list available housing and food resources on campus and in the community. She also wants to talk with local cities and the county about prioritizing affordable housing and accessory dwelling units for community college students. She's working with the Foothill administration as well to make housing assistance and information part of the enrollment and orientation process for new students, just as financial aid and other support programs are.

"When students do not have money because of their family status to be able to pay for books, then we ask them, 'Do you need financial aid?' We don't make the assumption that students have an ability to pay for books," Nguyen said. "If we go at it from that mindset, then we ask the question, 'How can we provide information or even actual services to (homeless) students?"

While she won't take a firm position on AB 302, Nguyen is supportive of another bill that would change the way financial aid is calculated for community college students by taking into account the total cost of attendance, including housing. Senate Bill 291, which is co-sponsored by the California Community Colleges and the Community College League of California, is now pending in the Assembly's Higher Education Committee.

Berman's bill has brought to the forefront a student homelessness crisis at California community colleges, where nearly one in five students are either homeless or do not have a stable housing, according to a recent survey conducted by the California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office and The Hope Center for College, Community, and Justice. But there is little agreement on whether overnight parking is the right solution to address this segment of the state's housing crisis.

Supporters see AB 302 as a way to provide fast-acting, much-needed relief for students who live out of their cars and struggle to find somewhere safe to park at night.

"This is not meant to be a long-term solution," Berman has said, "but the crisis exists today and we can't pretend like it doesn't."

Opponents, however, have criticized the legislation as a one-size-fits-all, temporary fix that will take resources away from long-term solutions, such as more substantial financial aid for community college students. Citing concerns about cost and liability, some community colleges have asked that compliance with the bill be optional.

"We are concerned that this well-meaning approach masks the deeper issue of lack of resources, such as financial aid for California's community college students, and instead potentially subjects students to sanitation and safety issues," the Community College League of California said in an opposition statement. "We are concerned AB 302 perpetuates the structural inequities in California's higher education system."

The bill passed the Assembly in May on a 60-8 vote and is set for a July 9 hearing at the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The safe overnight lot bill is one of several possible solutions, in Nguyen's eyes, including giving students Airbnb gift certificates for emergency, short-term housing (which Foothill is working to do) and prioritizing students for affordable housing in the area.

"Quite frankly, the community college leaders accelerated the conversation of food insecurity and housing insecurity well before the bill," she said, "but this bill has lit a fire of 'Then, what are we going to do, if it's not this?'"

Related content:

Barely scraping by: How the Bay Area housing crisis is making it near impossible for students to stay in community college

Learn more about state bills on housing currently working their way through the Legislature by watching the April 5 episode of "Behind the Headlines," now available on our YouTube channel and podcast page.

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Comments

8 people like this
Posted by Wishful thinking
a resident of Barron Park
on Jul 3, 2019 at 11:24 am

Income can be supplemented by the state to provide help w housing or other essentials, food, etc. With a $21 billion surplus, why can't the state assist rather than push these unfunded costs onto community colleges?


21 people like this
Posted by housing?
a resident of Community Center
on Jul 3, 2019 at 12:03 pm

What about actually providing housing for Foothill students? A number of California CCs (admittedly mostly in rural areas) have dorms. Tiny tomes (i.e. from shipping containers) would be another option.


46 people like this
Posted by Marc
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 3, 2019 at 12:47 pm

Did anyone including Marc Berman really think this through?

What does making a "safe space" for sleeping overnight in a car mean? Do the colleges have to provide bathroom, cleaning, cooking facilities? Heat? Light? WiFi? Comfortable sleeping cots that can fit in cars?

Will students be allowed to idle their cars all night to provide heat? Security guards to patrol the lots?

Will students be allowed to sue the schools claiming physical ailments due to poor sleeping conditions? Will they need extra time to complete assignments, take tests?

Will the lots become hazardous waste sites due to fluid runoff from the cars? Will students be allowed to do car repair on site? Will they have to move their vehicles everyday or is this going to become a homeless encampment?

/marc


31 people like this
Posted by Family Friendly
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Jul 3, 2019 at 2:50 pm

That would be the end of the "community" part of "community college." Vagrants will pour in from all over the state and country to pitch their tents as "students," and nobody from the neighborhood will dare venturing close enough to actually take a cooking class.


24 people like this
Posted by goody
a resident of Los Altos
on Jul 3, 2019 at 3:42 pm

You gotta be kidding.
What a slippery slope......when does the gimme, gimme state stop. Socialism is the democrats goal.
And there is no "surplus" the state should spend on this. It is a rainy day fund. Or maybe highway improvements.


25 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 3, 2019 at 5:04 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

It became apparent over the weekend festivities that Mr. Berman is part of the group of local assembly people who keep looking for opportunities to disrupt what ever is going on the peninsula and create havoc. He is part of the SB50 group. I look at this as an attention grabbing effort on his part to get publicity. Besides the community college they should be looking at the city of Los Altos that will also be affected by this scheme. It will be their police force, clean-up crews, and other support systems to keep on top of this - including medical support.

There are a lot of community colleges in the state that are located in areas that have sufficient living spaces within cities. The Foothill School is in an area that is subject to fire threat. Just what they need is a bunch of people in the parking lots all night cooking? smoking? In general a threat to the environment. And Mr. Berman just had a town hall on that very subject - protecting the area in the hills from wild fire threats. Does anyone ever connect the dots here? It is like they all stovepipe an idea with no regard of cause and effect when that idea is actually implemented.


1 person likes this
Posted by What a great idea!
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Jul 3, 2019 at 5:05 pm

My gosh how wonderful the state is finally stepping up to do something about this homeless crisis! Student homelessness is such a big issue that I am glad we are talking about spending this amount to help this problem! We really do need to make CC parking lots open 247 to accommodate all the minorities and unfortunate people that need this service! Sure, $800K is a lot, but it is so drastically needed and will increase the living conditions for our fellow car-dwellers! It's not a major project or anything... It will definitely not attract criminals and felons to that area...


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Posted by long view
a resident of South of Midtown
on Jul 3, 2019 at 6:11 pm

long view is a registered user.

I hope allowing students to sleep in their vehicles at community colleges works out in a low cost way. Having an authorized place to park removes a lot of stress. For some this may be an RV. For others, it will just be a car. The question about idling cars is valid. To the other comments about getting handouts, where is your support for people who make things work to get ahead? I respect people who are willing to make hard choices to get an education. Passing courses to stay a valid community college student will make those who use this option worthy of respect.


28 people like this
Posted by A Bad Idea
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 3, 2019 at 7:30 pm

This is a very bad idea.

It is not Foothill/DeAnaza or SMCCCD's job to house students on parking lots. It is a bad idea. To accomplish this, the schools will need to construct bathroom facilities, build showers, hire additional security and custodians. To what end.

The real solution is to HOUSE the students in affordable DORMS. These have been done elsewhere with public/private joint ventures.

The Chancellors of Foothill-DeAnza CCD and San Mateo County CCD are recognized experts in delivering world leading CC educations, are 100% opposed to this idea. It is my understanding that the vast majority of CC Chancellors are opposed to this idea as well.

It's time for Mark Berman to listen to REAL experts, and walk away from this well intentioned by disastrous idea.

If Mark wants to extend his career in Sacramento, or even dream about DC...he needs to walk this idea back.


26 people like this
Posted by eileen
a resident of College Terrace
on Jul 3, 2019 at 8:35 pm

eileen is a registered user.

I can't even begin to express, in my humble opinion, what a terrible idea this is!! Beautiful Foothill College campus
turning into an RV park? Mr Berman, please show some wisdom here. This is not going to solve the housing problem.
Use your political clout to make real, long term, changes for these students. Try and get Billionaire tech companies to help pay for housing for future tech jobs. Once you set up an RV camp it's impossible to turn back. Look at Buena Vista. That property could have been housing for tons more low income residents!!


15 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 4, 2019 at 8:01 am

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

I want to add to my comments that people living on the parking lot will invite a rat infestation. That is not what benefits the college or the people who live in the immediate area need or want. From where I am sitting the city of Los Altos and the college should be able to say NO - not going to work in a hill area that could be subject to fire.

Note in paper today is fires on freeways sidelines caused by catalytic converters that break. Also dragging chains. So just imagine the broken down cars and broken down RV's that could occupy the parking lots and that is an invitation to disaster.
All I see is the giant mess that you see on El Camino with propped up ancient RV's. Normal students are going to go elsewhere.
What is worse is that the cost of this mess is going to be passed on to the students in fees. The college is non-profit but must meet it's financial goals to stay open.


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Posted by RV Dweller
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 4, 2019 at 8:57 am

> is this going to become a homeless encampment?

>> Vagrants will pour in from all over the state and country to pitch their tents as "students," and nobody from the neighborhood will dare venturing close enough to actually take a cooking class.

>>> So just imagine the broken down cars and broken down RV's that could occupy the parking lots...

Being able to take a class while legally allowed to park + access to the restroom facilities and gym showers is very appealing for those living under the poverty line. And what better atmosphere than an educational institution which encourages people to enrich their lives through learning?

Kudos to Mr. Berman for putting the 'community' back in community college.

Looking forward to relocating from ECR at the earliest notice.


10 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 4, 2019 at 9:41 am

Just another not-thoroughly-thought-through idea from Marc Berman. I can't believe I voted for the guy-- he just isn't logical. I will vote for a different Democrat next time. The only thing that could make me vote for Berman again is if the other candidate is a Republican.

In the meantime-- would the people pushing for this please think it through carefully? Add up all the externalities-- the legal/police/maintenance/etc costs for providing housing this way. Let's spend that money on actual -housing-.


4 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 6, 2019 at 11:51 am

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

This came up over the weekend on a east coast news show. They were talking about the subject relative to Los Angeles and the current status of squalor in that city. This article is talking about Foothill but the bill is for all CC's in the state.

They noted the problems with this as rats and the sickness they can bring. Many sicknesses that we do not typically see but now see because of the trash in the city and people who have not had their shots.

Let's note here that there are a number of bills floating around regarding the education system and the properties they are on. From where I am sitting the education system is a target for any number of schemes some of which focus on homeless and construction. And the usual suspects are writing those bills.

Since this bill is state wide I do not see any problem with any one CC opting out based on location and what the property can provide. In the case of Foothill the name says it all - it is in a very vulnerable location regarding fire protection.
Other CC's are inner city and do not have those same issues. There is no reason that any one CC has to comply with a situation that has many risks.


9 people like this
Posted by An Alternative
a resident of Los Altos
on Jul 6, 2019 at 12:41 pm

How about turning the Duveneck's hostel into temporary Foothill student housing?

It's within close proximity and all one needs is a bike (or walk to campus).

Bucolic and quiet + transient RVs cannot park there.


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Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 6, 2019 at 6:19 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

Where is that hostel? I have never heard of it. And what about the people who own it?


13 people like this
Posted by Foothill Alum 79
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Jul 6, 2019 at 6:37 pm

When these students transfer to 4 year universities, most will be faced with the same problem - no guaranteed housing.
The UC's are facing the same problem.
My son told me that several of his friends who transferred to Cal had to "couch surf" for more than a year.
UC Santa Cruz asked their professors and staff to consider renting rooms to students to help ease the lack of student housing.
UC Santa Barbara has similar problems.
Basically, there really is no solution. We are impacted.
Professors, teachers, and staff are faced with the same problem. No housing.
I feel that the problem is state wide and any attempt to mitigate it regionally will simply add more problems.
Additionally, we must put a cap on foreign student visas - these people are simply using the loop hole in our educational system to gain entry into the US.
The community colleges, private colleges, and private high schools have become processing centers for immigrants. Stanford is also processing a large number of foreign students - most of who never return to their homelands. The foreign graduate students are using Stanford housing, and bring over their spouse and kids to live here for many years - slowly chipping away at a PhD - after their primary goal of migration was achieved.
We are packed.

Perhaps this will all become clear when we go through our next drought cycle.


6 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 6, 2019 at 10:45 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

We were at UCLA Anderson School of Business and most of the students in that program were foreign. They could speak English but were not American. We lived in married student housing which was old apartments on Sawtelle - not on campus - and most of the other people were from foreign countries. These were really old apartments going back to WW2. But they were huge. UCLA makes a lot of money on foreign students. You look at pictures in the year books of the "schools" and some are all of one race - Asian. And this was a long time ago so nothing is new here in their admission policies.

My son went to Chico State and that turned out to be a great place to be - the Freshman get first choices on classes so they get off to a good start. Sometimes small is good - they take care of everyone really well. And they had coed housing. Others who went to U of Colorado did not get any good classes so blew a lot of money for nothing.


7 people like this
Posted by Moochie
a resident of another community
on Jul 7, 2019 at 3:14 pm

"The real solution is to HOUSE the students in affordable DORMS. These have been done elsewhere with public/private joint ventures."

Uh, then they wouldn't be "community" colleges. They're supposed to draw from the surrounding communities, who ostensibly live nearby. That's why they don't have housing.

" The only thing that could make me vote for Berman again is if the other candidate is a Republican."

Maybe you need to reexamine your use of labels. The Democratic Party is pushing even further left (see: AOC). They'll eventually look to confiscate your house to put students in there.


Like this comment
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 7, 2019 at 4:23 pm

Posted by Moochie, a resident of another community

>> > " The only thing that could make me vote for Berman again is if the other candidate is a Republican."

>> Maybe you need to reexamine your use of labels. The Democratic Party is pushing even further left (see: AOC). They'll eventually look to confiscate your house to put students in there.

A few 2020 candidates have dared to propose putting the top marginal tax rate back to what it was before the Trump tax cuts. Web Link None of them are proposing putting the top marginal rate back to what it was under JFK, as AOC has talked about -- 70%, let alone what it was under Eisenhower-- ~91%. Web Link

Does that mean that Eisenhower was even further left than "even further left"?

Web Link

Web Link

Web Link


7 people like this
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jul 7, 2019 at 6:04 pm

^ Nah, Eisenhower let us fully deduct state and local taxes. And no AMT.


4 people like this
Posted by Animal House
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 7, 2019 at 7:45 pm

How about if various Los Altos residents rent out their multi-roomed homes and create a JC-inspired fraternity/sorority row nearby the Foothill campus?


8 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 7, 2019 at 9:34 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

A community college is a non-profit educational effort. It is suppose to be a two year effort leading to an AA degree. The whole point is to have lower cost classes. If they build a dormitory then the cost of classes will go up to cover the cost of the dorms. That is counter to the whole point here. The goal is to have lower cost for classes for EVERYONE - not just the homeless people. The CC assumes that the people there are from the local high schools so live at home or have parental support. You cannot go in and increase the cost of classes for everyone based on a very small minority of students. If you read the article they have a referral system for housing in the local area. I worked in college and assume that other people will be working. I still think that the apartments which are behind the car wash on El Camino are very old and could work as a living space for students and teachers. Someone should work a deal with those older apartments to offset the cost by some type of funding from the state. The state is big on homeless now, and teachers, so time to get the state to pony up some money.


8 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 8, 2019 at 8:29 am

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

Big article today on clearance of dead vegetation for fire control in all cities. It is obvious that a CC can control it's internal green space but all of the area outside the perimeter parking lot is dead vegetation. It is not the CC's job to clear dead vegetation outside it's perimeter. It is the local cities job to do that and what ever fire protection services they have. And that is dependent on each's cities set-up regarding water - how much do they have and how many water outlets for fire protection. I do not know what the set-up is for Los Altos but am sure that they do not want to waste water unnecessarily and save it for the actual residents of the city. I can see that there are articles about fire control and who pays for it regarding Atherton and Menlo Park. So the risk factor has been identified and believe that each city is reviewing where the problem areas are.

As we know from fires in the north bay they can be started by non-human factors as well as human factors. Foothill College has no business being targeted by a local paper to take in homeless people overnight. That will raise their insurance coverage greatly. They have enough management issued to provide classes and help students without being pushed to take on a risk that is non-educational in nature.
Our educational systems and properties are being targeted by numerous bills in the city and CA legislature because they are funded by property taxes. There appears to be less scrutiny as to how bond measure and tax provided funding are appropriated so looks like a shake-down of less -controlled money. Canada College is also in a vulnerable location on a hill next to freeway 280.


2 people like this
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jul 8, 2019 at 5:34 pm

My observation at Marc Berman’s last open house was that strident advocates had his solid support on this. While acknowledging a problem of some disadvantaged students, there are practical issues that are likely being brushed aside by Mr. Berman. I suggest emailing him with your opinions and eecommendations.
There IS a risk of a spreading transient camp. These situations are tolerated and suppirted by millions of taxpayer dollars now in the state of CA.
Meanwhile, we have jobs needing to be filled. The “poor economy” story doesn’t wash, in most cases.
How to guve grants (?) to local, deserving students while avoiding be becoming a fulltime support scheme for transients.....


Like this comment
Posted by Marie
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 9, 2019 at 11:24 am

Marie is a registered user.

There seems to be a lot of negative assumptions about overnight student parking. East Palo Alto is implementing a RV parking plan starting with 16 spaces that looks like it would avoid most of the problems stated above.

I think any such plan should be similar to the EPA plan, although students would be able to park during the day also. The vehicles must be operational. I would suggest that eligible students must take 6 units in a matriculated program - i.e. leading to an Assoc. of Arts or a specific profession, not just cooking classes and they must meet a minimal GPA - 2.0 or above. This would eliminate people taking classes solely to be able to park their cars on campus at night.

Also, the plan should include information to help students get permanent housing. And there should be studies as to why these students don't have housing which will recommend how to help them find housing.

I think there should be a serious study of adding residential dormitories for students at community colleges. It seems to me that if the college supplied the land, a public housing developer should be able to build dormitories that could be paid for by the student residents at no cost to the college. Dormitories should be limited to matriculated students, probably taking at least 12 units per semester for a specific period of time to maximize assistance to serious students. Priority should be given to students who qualify for financial aid.

I believe we need to do much more to help young people train for high quality jobs in our communities. For example, we have a great need of people in health fields. Many community colleges have programs in the health field for LVN's, x-ray technicians and the like, for which there is lots of demand, much of which is filled by non-residents at the same time community colleges are rejecting qualified applicants for these programs, because of lack of capacity. We need to be expanding programs that provide good jobs for our young people.


5 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 9, 2019 at 2:24 pm

Posted by Marie, a resident of Midtown

>> I believe we need to do much more to help young people train for high quality jobs in our communities. For example, we have a great need of people in health fields. Many community colleges have programs in the health field for LVN's, x-ray technicians and the like, for which there is lots of demand, much of which is filled by non-residents at the same time community colleges are rejecting qualified applicants for these programs, because of lack of capacity. We need to be expanding programs that provide good jobs for our young people.

I fail to see what any of these interesting issues you raise have to do with creating an RV park or homeless encampment in the busy parking lots of urban community colleges? Why the CC? You could just as easily rationalize creating such an area in the parking lots of Wells Fargo Banks, since, after all, one of the major issues such folks are dealing with is -lack of money-.


6 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 9, 2019 at 5:17 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

Most of the suggestions above already exist. Most CC's have certification programs for medical assistance jobs. Most colleges do not have available land to build dormitories. They want that land to add buildings that have teaching units. Each CC can and will provide what is available based on how much land they have and where they are located. If you put a building on land owned by a CC then they are financially responsible for it and the water and resources it will be using including trash pick-up and fire protection, security.

De Anza is going to take down Flint Center because the retrofit it needs is too expensive and it is not related to education - the purpose of the CC. Also their parking structure is now not earthquake safe and needs to be retrofitted. That is all very expensive.

Ideas look good on paper but financing, legal requirements, and resources which will be required on a regular basis are the reality.

EPA and Oakland are putting in RV Parks on what is the cities land so they are the responsible parties for running the whole effort. All of the factors are expensive and have a lot of requirements that have nothing to do with a CC's charter.


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Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 10, 2019 at 11:05 am

Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows, a resident of Adobe-Meadow

>> De Anza is going to take down Flint Center because the retrofit it needs is too expensive and it is not related to education - the purpose of the CC. Also their parking structure is now not earthquake safe and needs to be retrofitted. That is all very expensive.

I'm sad about it. IIRC, the first concert I attended at Flint Center was Ashkenazy in 1972. But, I don't agree that "it is not related to education"-- having first-rate musicians performing on-site -is- related to education. Unfortunately, it seems the seismic issues are insurmountable. But, why not replace it? I don't know to what extent they have tried to raise the necessary funds, but, there are houses in the foothills that cost more than a replacement concert hall would.


2 people like this
Posted by Don't let perfect be the enemy of good enough.
a resident of Menlo Park
on Jul 11, 2019 at 7:42 pm

Community colleges already have gyms with restroom facilities. No one needs 24 hour access. Close at 10om.

Student IDs could be required. This will not invite a giant homeless population moving in.

Increased security and signage yes.

Dorms would be wonderful but would cost 100X more.

Why is everyone turning this simple idea to solve a real problem into a cluster?

Don't let perfect be the enemy of good enough.


6 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 11, 2019 at 10:45 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

No one has a problem with people using the gym and showers who are registered students. That is what you are suppose to do if you have classes there. If you read all of the above you will see that the overnight living arrangements on the parking lot are the problem. And the school has stated what the cost impact is. That is not a simple problem. How old are you? Menlo Park - why not Canada college for you? Why don't you ask Canada College what the cost impact is? It is really irritating that Foothill was called out in this article. It is like putting the burden on that specific school which is sitting in a high fire zone.


8 people like this
Posted by Me 2
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Jul 12, 2019 at 8:42 am

"Why is everyone turning this simple idea to solve a real problem into a cluster? "

Because it's a stupid idea that feckless politicians like Berman like to do to show that he's "doing something" when they're doing nothing to solve the actual problem - and in fact, makes things worse.




10 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 12, 2019 at 9:44 am

Posted by Don't let perfect be the enemy of good enough., a resident of Menlo Park

>> Don't let perfect be the enemy of good enough.

It is good enough already. The CC's have a job (some do it better than others) of providing vocational training for some and the first year or two of college for others at low cost. They are not and were never intended to be full-service high-cost institutions.


16 people like this
Posted by ?
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 13, 2019 at 3:42 pm

Why do broke people have to live in the most expensive place in the nation? They could afford rent in a neighboring state and the cost of living is much less. The fact that they chose education here is an indication that they will not likely change their circumstances even with a college degree.

If we could not afford our mortgage, we’d move elsewhere, that is just what reasonable people do.


4 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 14, 2019 at 1:09 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

I think Menlo Park should take this up with his city Council. He is in San Mateo County and his CC is Canada College. Why don't you all run around and put the pressure on the CC's in your own county and find out what they think of this.

There is a bottom line - all educational institutions are running on a thin edge of financial wellness which at any time can be disrupted by situations out of their budget process. We don't need legislators telling schools how to run their individual businesses because they have no point of responsibility when things go wrong - and they usually do go wrong. Facility cost are a big issues with potential flooding, earthquakes, wear and tear of the buildings, concerns with too little water available, etc. The List goes on and on. Just let them do the job they are there for and quit thinking up actions which are not in their charter or budget.


4 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 15, 2019 at 8:31 am

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

I drove up 280 this weekend and the hills are brown and dry. If you ever wanted to look at a fire zone then this is it. Any suggestion that any irregular activity be pursued in this area be stopped. People with housing issues need to be down on the concrete in areas that are not in danger.


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