Recent News

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

President Obama, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg talk global enterprise at summit

President Barack Obama sat down for a panel discussion with Palo Alto resident and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit on Friday at Stanford University to discuss the role of entrepreneurship in advancing and, perhaps, a future for the president that might involve more informal attire.

Tuesday, 10:06 AM | No comments yet
FAA, elected officials hear complaints of aircraft noise

The Federal Aviation Administration got an earful in Redwood City on June 15, having completed a study of noise complaints from residents of San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties regarding aircraft headed to SFO.

Tuesday, 10:02 AM | No comments yet
Woodside: 'Pig scramble' faces local opposition

A tradition at the Woodside July Fourth Junior Rodeo is under fire. A local veterinarian and former humane society medical chief of staff says a "large coalition" of Woodside residents and neighbors are organizing to try to stop the "pig scramble."

Tuesday, 10:00 AM | No comments yet
Water rationing goals may drop dramatically

Cal Water has recommended that customers' water rationing goal be reduced from 36 percent to 10 from 2013 usage. If the state PUC and water board approve, the changes take place Aug. 1.

Tuesday, 9:47 AM | No comments yet

Monday, June 27, 2016

Portola Valley home burglarized Monday morning

Someone burglarized an unoccupied residence on Granada Court in Portola Valley at about 11:45 a.m. Monday (June 27), the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office has reported.

Monday, 5:41 PM | 2 comments
Spare the Air alert issued for Tuesday

The Bay Area Air Quality Management District has issued a Spare the Air alert for Tuesday because of expected unhealthy air conditions in the region.

Monday, 4:39 PM | 1 comment
Tuesday: Housing, airport noise on county supervisors' agenda

A joint effort by San Mateo County's cities and county government to address the county's jobs and housing imbalance will be on the agenda of the Board of Supervisors when it meets Tuesday morning, June 28. Also on the agenda: creating a fund to purchase and preserve low- and moderate-income housing and a report on the San Carlos Airport study.

Monday, 11:29 AM | No comments yet
Portola Valley home invasion rattles town residents

Little more than a year after Portola Valley's Town Council voted not to install cameras to record license plate numbers of vehicles entering and leaving the town, a recent home invasion by armed burglars is spurring residents to reconsider the choice.

Monday, 9:17 AM | No comments yet
Sequoia Union school board votes down East Palo Alto charter school

Despite testimonies of support from a standing-room-only crowd, the Sequoia Union High School District Board of Trustees voted 3-2 against approval of a brand-new public charter school on June 15.

Monday, 9:11 AM | No comments yet
Seven locals receive Merit scholarships

One Woodside High senior, three seniors from Menlo-Atherton High, and three from Menlo School were among the recipients nationwide of 2016 National Merit scholarships, according to the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

Monday, 9:07 AM | 1 comment
Art in Action establishes new scholarship fund

The Menlo Park nonprofit Art in Action, which provides in-school visual-art education to more than 220 elementary and middle schools, has established the Judy Sleeth Scholarship Fund, which will allow the organization to accept applications from schools new to the program.

Monday, 9:06 AM | No comments yet

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Service Tuesday for Evelyn Stoops, 70-year resident of Woodside

Evelyn Stoops, a Woodside resident for more than 70 years who worked in real estate for more than 50 years, died June 20 at age 98 in Sequoia Hospital in Redwood City.

Sunday, 12:12 AM | No comments yet

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Atherton thefts: Unlocked pickup, bicycle and money from unlocked vehicle

Atherton police say that an unlocked white Toyota Tacoma pickup truck with a white camper shell was stolen from a Lloyden Drive driveway sometime between 2 and 4:15 p.m. Friday afternoon, June 24. The keys were in the vehicle.

Saturday, 2:50 PM | No comments yet

Friday, June 24, 2016

Scott Delucchi departs for Monterey SPCA post

Scott Delucchi, a former Menlo Park resident, has left his post as vice president of community relations for the Peninsula Humane Society to become chief executive officer of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals for Monterey County.

Friday, 5:17 PM | No comments yet
Firefighters extinguish second homeless camp blaze since March

Firefighters on Friday morning (June 24) paid another emergency visit to the site of a grass fire at an undeveloped area in Menlo Park at the intersection of Willow Road, Bayfront Expressway and University Avenue. The area, known as the Kavanaugh Tract, is used as a campground by the homeless.

Friday, 2:54 PM | No comments yet
Menlo Park's assessed property value up 12.5 percent

The assessed value of property in Menlo Park grew by 12.5 percent in 2105, a faster rate than that of any other city in San Mateo County, county assessor Mark Church announced on June 23. The assessed property value rose 8.2 percent in Atherton, 6.9 percent in Woodside and 4.5 percent in Portola Valley.

Friday, 11:59 AM | 11 comments
Menlo Park: Home burglary suspect nabbed

An attempt by Menlo Park police to talk to the driver of a vehicle whose occupants appeared to be scoping out homes to burglarize in the area of O'Connor Street led to a car and foot chase and the arrest of one of at least two burglary suspects on Thursday.

Friday, 11:46 AM | 8 comments
Facebook expansion could exacerbate housing issues, report says

Facebook's expansion – a project that would add two office buildings and a hotel, totaling more than a million square feet – is unlikely to have a direct impact on the housing crisis in East Palo Alto and Belle Haven, but it could yield an indirect impact, a new report says.

Friday, 11:18 AM | 4 comments
Firefighters extinguish homeless camp blaze; second since March

Firefighters put out a brush fire that broke out at a homeless encampment in Menlo Park this morning near Bayfront Expressway and Willow Road.

Friday, 8:26 AM | No comments yet

Thursday, June 23, 2016

FAA approves Surf Air route to take planes over Bay

Commuter airline Surf Air has received permission from the Federal Aviation Administration to start flying a new approach to the San Carlos Airport, sending its planes over the Bay from Moffett Field past the Dumbarton Bridge whenever conditions allow, starting on Tuesday, July 5.

Thursday, 11:53 AM | 9 comments
Menlo Park council raises staff salaries at cost of $430K

The Menlo Park City Council passed a $113 million budget Tuesday and agreed to a higher pay for city employees that will cost about $430,000 the first year.

Thursday, 11:37 AM | 1 comment

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

DA proposes mandatory prison sentence for sexual-assault crimes

In the wake of widespread outrage over the three months former Stanford University student-athlete Brock Turner will spend in jail after sexually assaulting an unconscious and intoxicated woman on campus last year, Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen announced Wednesday proposed legislation that would eliminate the possibility of probation and make years in prison mandatory for anyone convicted of the same crime.

Wednesday, 11:21 PM | 2 comments
Sacred Heart Schools hosts 118th commencement

Sacred Heart Preparatory graduated 144 students recently at the 118th commencement ceremony at Sacred Heart Schools in Atherton.

Wednesday, 10:44 PM | No comments yet
Woodside: Ex-councilman sees himself as watchdog of architectural board

Woodside resident Dave Burow left the Town Council in December but he stays active in town affairs, showing up occasionally at council meetings and regularly at meetings of the Architectural and Site Review Board.

Wednesday, 10:35 PM | No comments yet
San Mateo County launches app for dads

San Mateo County has launched an app called "SMC Dads" designed to give dads information about local parenting resources.

Wednesday, 10:33 PM | No comments yet
County holds vigil for Orlando shooting victims

"Ellos solo querian bailar," said Jorge Bautista, a minister at the Congregational Church of San Mateo, speaking at a June 17 vigil held at the county center in Redwood City to mourn the 49 people who died in a shooting at Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando. Translated, Mr. Bautista's statement says, "They only wanted to dance."

Wednesday, 10:23 PM | No comments yet
Menlo Park: Residents skeptical Facebook expansion will have 'less than significant' housing impact

Residents question a draft environmental impact report that says adding about 6,550 employees and no housing will have a "less than significant" impact on the city's population and housing situation.

Wednesday, 10:42 AM | 15 comments
How locals voted in presidential primary

In the 62 precincts in the Almanac area, presidential candidate Hillary Clinton won 72 percent of the Democratic vote in the June 7 presidential primary, according to data provided by the San Mateo County Elections Office.

Wednesday, 10:24 AM | 10 comments
Police calls in Menlo Park, Woodside, West Menlo Park

A Menlo Park woman sent $10,000 in cash via Fed Ex to someone claiming to be her granddaughter and saying she needed the money to get out of jail. A conversation with her actual granddaughter a couple of weeks later proved the incident was a scam.

Wednesday, 10:14 AM | No comments yet
Atherton, Caltrain squabble over train horns

Atherton's quiet zone, where trains aren't to blow their horns near the Fair Oaks Lane crossing except in an emergency, went into effect on June 13. But Caltrain says a loophole allows sounding the horns through the adjacent station.

Wednesday, 10:07 AM | 9 comments

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Staff salaries, water conservation on tonight's Menlo Park City Council agenda

Staff salary range boosts and water conservation are two of the issues the Menlo Park City Council is scheduled to vote on today, Tuesday, June 21.

Tuesday, 7:25 PM | No comments yet
Lawyer explains when school district can exclude public

After promising to involve the public in future planning, the Menlo Park City School District invited a lawyer to a board meeting June 13 to explain why the public can legally be excluded from some of those discussions.

Tuesday, 8:30 AM | 13 comments

Monday, June 20, 2016

Jenna Carson: a force in helping at-risk students succeed

It's uncommon to encounter an advocate for narrowing one's choices, but fewer options can sometimes be what's called for, according to Menlo-Atherton High School's Jenna Carson.

Monday, 11:27 PM | 1 comment
Police arrest pair in connection with Atherton, Menlo Park mail theft

Palo Alto police arrested a man and a woman Tuesday, June 7, for allegedly stealing mail from several residential mailboxes in Atherton and Menlo Park.

Monday, 11:24 PM | 3 comments
'Spare the Air' alert issued for today

A Spare the Air alert has been issued for Tuesday, June 21, in the Bay Area, the fourth such alert issued this month for unhealthy air conditions, air district officials said.

Monday, 1:32 PM | No comments yet
Menlo Park: Teacher arrested after physical altercations with students

George Karr, 42, a physical education teacher at Willow Oaks School in Menlo Park, was arrested June 10 after a physical altercation with two children, ages 10 and 11, during a baseball game, Menlo Park police reported.

Monday, 1:10 PM | 10 comments
Councilman Mueller: Menlo Park Planning Commission has too much on its plate tonight

Attempting to review two massive and important reports – one on Facebook's expansion plans and the other on the general plan update – in one meeting is not a good idea, says Menlo Park Council Ray Mueller. He is calling on the city manager to postpone tonight's Planning Commission review of an environmental impact report on the general plan update, so the commission can focus on the Facebook report.

Monday, 12:46 PM | No comments yet
PG&E to covert 229 Atherton street lights to LEDs

Pacific Gas & Electric will spend two or three weeks converting 229 utility-owned street lights in Atherton to LEDs this summer, allowing the town to save on its utility bills.

Monday, 10:46 AM | 10 comments
Beekeeping presentation keeps Woodside's Town Hall buzzing

Woodside's historic Town Hall was buzzing on Sunday, June 12, as the town's Open Space Committee sponsored a presentation on beekeeping.

Monday, 10:42 AM | No comments yet

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Foundation raises $900,000 for Woodside High School

Woodside High School will be participating in the Silicon Valley Urban Debate League in the 2016-17 school year, one of many new opportunities made possible by donors to the Woodside High School Foundation.

Sunday, 10:58 PM | 1 comment
Scholarship fund honors longtime college adviser Alice Kleeman

In a first for Menlo-Atherton High School's Senior Awards Night, held this year on May 31, scholarships were handed out in the name of Alice Kleeman, a college adviser for M-A students for 20 years before retiring in June 2015.

Sunday, 10:55 PM | 1 comment
Portola Valley event benefits abandoned exotic animals

Representatives from various corners of the animal kingdom -- reptiles, birds and mammals, including some 350 humans -- spent about four hours together for a good cause recently in Portola Valley's Westridge neighborhood.

Sunday, 10:49 PM | No comments yet

Friday, June 17, 2016

Menlo Park Kiwanis Club awards M-A students $41,000 in scholarships

The Menlo Park Kiwanis Club awarded $41,000 in eight scholarships to graduates of Menlo-Atherton High School at a recent lunchtime ceremony at the Allied Arts Guild in Menlo Park.

Friday, 11:42 AM | No comments yet
Menlo Park: capital of commercial drones

Menlo Park has more registered commercial drones than any other U.S. city, according to a database released by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on May 18, and initially reported by MarketWatch.

Friday, 11:34 AM | 2 comments
Menlo Rotary Club awards $125,000 in scholarships

More than 100 students from local high schools received scholarships and academic awards during the Rotary Club of Menlo Park's recent scholastic achievement awards ceremony at Menlo-Atherton High School's Performing Arts Center.

Friday, 11:24 AM | No comments yet
County aims to ease citizenship process for immigrants

To help San Mateo County residents seeking U.S. citizenship, the county has created the Office of Immigration Support and Coordination.

Friday, 11:23 AM | No comments yet
Feature: At 100, Menlo Park Library pivots to face 21st century

In its first century, the library has grown from a few books in a school building to two buildings, a $2.7 million annual budget and up to 15 full-time employees, circulating an estimated 423,000 books over the past 12 months.

Friday, 11:21 AM | No comments yet
Portola Valley talk: 'A Gay Christian's Pilgrimage'

Jeff Chu, a former Time magazine staffer and the author of "Does Jesus Really Love Me?: A Gay Christian's Pilgrimage in Search of God in America," will speak at Valley Presbyterian Church five times over a period of eight days as part of the church's Spiritual Catalysts series, starting June 19.

Friday, 11:13 AM | No comments yet
Today: San Mateo County vigil for victims of Orlando shooting

In the wake of the June 11 shooting at an Orlando nightclub that left 49 dead and dozens injured, San Mateo County will hold a vigil to remember victims and show opposition to homophobia and gun violence.

Friday, 7:34 AM | 16 comments

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Today: Two huge reviews on general plan, Facebook for Menlo Park Planning Commission

Academic ambition is one thing. It is another thing to be assigned almost 10,000 pages of documents (in the form of two lengthy draft environmental impact reports) as a member of a volunteer civic commission to read through, ask clarifying questions about, and give recommendations for -- all in one sitting.

Thursday, 4:17 PM | 12 comments
Atherton council votes to impose full parcel tax rate in coming fiscal year

Even though Atherton has a healthy budget surplus, City Council members voted unanimously on Wednesday, June 15, not to reduce the amount of the parcel tax residents pay, saying they need the money to help pay for projects to improve and repair the town's road and drainage systems.

Thursday, 11:50 AM | No comments yet
Menlo Park man faces prison term for burglary of occupied home

A 24-year-old Menlo Park man, nabbed by police inside a 74-year-old woman's Menlo Park home in February with $5,000 worth of her jewelry, pleaded no contest Wednesday to two counts of residential burglary.

Thursday, 11:32 AM | 3 comments
Atherton installing pedestrian-activated stoplight where man was killed

A pedestrian-activated stoplight should be operating on El Camino at Almendral Avenue by the end of the summer, Atherton officials say. A 32-year-old Atherton resident was killed at the crosswalk in 2014.

Thursday, 9:55 AM | 12 comments

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Atherton: Gas line break repaired, roads reopened

A gas line main break on Encinal Avenue near Laurel Street reported by the Atherton Police Department at about 1 p.m. was repaired and local roads reopened by a little after 2:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 15.

Wednesday, 1:38 PM | 2 comments
Woodside: Man fined $212K for cutting down mature trees

A letter to a post office box is how Woodside Town Hall will initiate seeking payment of a $212,500 fine assessed on Rudolph Koppl for the premature felling of 22 large trees on a vacant 3.2-acre lot at 205 Mountain Wood Lane.

Wednesday, 11:53 AM | 19 comments
Menlo Park: How zoning changes could affect traffic, water

An environmental impact report says that if the proposed zoning changes are made, the city's M-2 area – located east of U.S. 101 – could get more housing and more traffic, all while edging closer to maxing out the city's water allocation.

Wednesday, 11:40 AM | 1 comment
Police calls: Woodside, Portola Valley, Menlo Park

Unlocked doors figure in two residential burglaries, in Woodside and Portola Valley, and a house is ransacked in Menlo Park.

Wednesday, 8:24 AM | 1 comment
DA disqualifies Judge Persky from new sex-assault case

The embattled judge who presided over the trial of former Stanford University student-athlete Brock Turner was disqualified Tuesday from hearing an unrelated sexual-assault case.

Wednesday, 8:23 AM | 3 comments

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