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November 02, 2005

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Publication Date: Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Election 2005: Letters of support Election 2005: Letters of support (November 02, 2005)


Good reasons to support Woodside bonds

Editor:

I've lived in Woodside for 58 years and I've seen many things change in and around our town. One that has always remained the same is the importance of Woodside Elementary School.

For many longtime Woodside residents, it's been some time since we've been on school grounds, but the school is part of the fabric of our community and we must all support the children being educated in its classrooms.

I urge all Woodside residents to join me in voting yes on Measure D November 8 to support the children and improve the physical structure in which they learn.

Dorothy Fifield

Ridge Court, Woodside



Surprised that Ellen Ablow not endorsed

Editor:

I am surprised that Ellen Ablow is not among your selections for the Woodside School Board and find myself questioning the criteria you used for judgment.

On one hand, you have endorsed two candidates who, along with Ms Ablow, have long and successful track records serving in senior positions on school committees, community task forces and the PTA.

On the other hand, you have endorsed a third candidate whose experience includes only two months of senior-level service (a PTA position that Ms. Ablow filled for two years). You seem to have bought into the notion that if one attended Woodside Elementary 24 years ago, they can lead the school now. I truly miss this logic.

In your endorsement, you say that you hope Ms. Ablow will continue volunteering for leadership positions. I agree. She is a highly educated woman who has for years proven her ability to lead Woodside community groups comprised of stakeholders with differing views and opinions. In fact, she sounds like the perfect candidate for Woodside's school board.

I urge your readers to join me in electing experienced leadership to the Woodside School Board by electing Ellen Ablow. Andrea Merten

Parent and chair of Woodside Elementary School Site Council



Woodside bonds a good investment

Editor:

I've been in business and finance my entire professional life and I know a good investment when I see one.

Voting yes on Measure D and investing in new classrooms and improved infrastructure at Woodside Elementary School is a smart investment. We fill the potholes to save our roads, replace the fire trucks to protect our lives and property, replace our roofs to protect our homes and maintain our cars to keep them running.

Woodside school needs the same type of periodic investment, maintenance and renovations to keep the education environment in good shape. Join me in making a smart investment by voting yes on Measure D for Woodside School.

Duff Baldwin

Smoke Tree Lane, Woodside


Support Carpenter for fire board

Editor:

Hardly a day goes by when we are not reminded of the crushing load on industries in the private sector caused by employee pensions and significant escalation in costs of health care. We all recognize that we have seen enormous increases in costs, contributed to by increased life expectancy, and quite often by disability fraud.

It is vital that local district agencies and boards be manned by people with private-sector experience who can budget for the long-term fiscal health of that agency, not the short-term gratification of current employees.

Having discussed these issues with Peter Carpenter, running for the Menlo Park Fire Protection District board as an incumbent, I urge voters to consider his experience and knowledge of the district's finances. Peter has that knowledge, education, and the willingness to represent us as district customers and taxpayers. I urge your support of his candidacy.

Nick J. Schubin

Menlo Park


A stealth agenda in Proposition 73

Editor:

Proposition 73 is a stealth measure, which, if it passes with a simple majority in an extremely low voter-turnout election, will amend our constitution to define abortion as causing "the death of an unborn child, a child conceived but not yet born."

If your readers favor stem cell research, fertility treatments, or reproductive freedom for women of all ages, they should vote no on Proposition 73.

Why do I call it a "stealth measure?" Because the problem it purports to solve does not exist. Most teens do tell their parents about unplanned pregnancies (61 percent overall, and 90 percent of 14-year-olds). Those who can't or don't want to tell their parents, still won't, even if the measure passes.

Research shows that in states that have enacted parental notification laws, teen abortions decline in that state, but increase by nearly as many in neighboring states without notification laws. Frightened, vulnerable teens who cannot get help from their parents have to find a way to travel long distances in order to receive safe medical care. Others take matters into their own hands, with disastrous consequences.

The California Medical Association, Nurses Association, and Juvenile Court Judges Association all oppose proposition 73.

Teen pregnancies have gone down by 40 percent in the last decade in California due to availability of contraceptive services and comprehensive sex education. These methods work. Parental notification measures do not, and they put teens in danger. Parents rightfully want to be involved in their teens' lives, but more importantly, they want to ensure that their teens are safe.

Karen Grove

Alameda de las Pulgas, Menlo Park






League of Cities endorsed Proposition 76

Editor:

California's 58 counties and 485 cities are required to have balanced budgets. That is why the League of Cities and the state Association of Counties have endorsed Proposition 76, which requires the state to review its revenues in mid-year and does not allow greatly increased spending in years when revenue spikes. It requires the state to "live within its means."

The league's Taxation and Revenue subcommittee spent weeks reviewing the details of Proposition 76 before recommending 22-3 for full endorsement by all cities. We spent eight hours at the recent conference analyzing Proposition 76 and then voting for endorsement.

Here is what we found: Why is it needed? In 1998 and 1999 when state revenues went up, so did spending levels. But when revenues went down during the recession on 2001, laws required spending levels to continue to increase. For seven years we have been spending $1.06 for every dollar we take in. We currently have billions of dollars of debt and have suspended work on transportation and other projects to meet mandated programs on autopilot with annual spending increases.

In 37states the governor has authority to correct a mid-year budget imbalance. Proposition 13 removed that ability in 1978 in California. Proposition 76 will require the Governor to advise the legislature they have 45 days to correct an imbalanced budget mid-year budget, and if they don't, then require the Governor to submit a balanced budget which they can override. Based on California history in one out of seven years, revenues do not match programmed spending increases.

In the past one solution the state used to "find money" to meet it budget shortfalls, was to reduce the amount cities and counties receive, causing incredible problems for us. By forcing the state to "live within its means" we protect the local government's ability to long term manage.

Charles Marsala

Vice-Mayor, Atherton



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