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on Oct 13, 2008
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Yet again, we have another crop of candidates focusing on social and environmental issues. You want to save the gay whales of color from the hole in the ozone layer? Good for you. But first, tell us what you are going to do about the day-to-day running of this city. Potholes? Police? Street lights? Dealing with these issues would be you primary job, yet we have not heard a single word about it.
Need some specific, bread-n-butter questions to get started? Try these:
* Mountain View never had much of a crime rate. Lately though, our sleepy burb has had multiple murders. What are you going to do about it?
* Efforts to build low rent housing have brought in low rent people. (Yes, I know that is harsh, but look at the aforementioned crime stats. For bonus points, compare our murder rate to Los Altos's murder rate.) What are you going to do about it? Yet more "sustainable", high density housing with below market pricing subsidized by other buyers?
* Panhandlers have gotten out of hand. What are you going to do with the loitering laws and more importantly, the enforcement of the loitering laws?
* Efforts are underway to plow up the last bit of open land in Mountain View and pave it over with a museum of Mountain View history to show people what Mountain View looked like before it was plowed up and paved over. What is your stand on this?
* Many of the sidewalks in Mountain View are 20-40 years old. Tree planted near those sidewalks have now matured and have pushed up the sidewalks. What are you plans for dealing with crumbling sidewalks?
Feel free to add your own questions.
Alicia Crank has talked about police and crime more than the other candidates.
I frankly disagree with most of your crime comments. I see no panhandling issues of consequence in MV, and a very small number of murders in a single year in a city the size of MV is not a "rate", but an anomaly. One murder is too many, but there is no trend here.
Your comment about the history museum was so spot-on funny, though, I couldnt let it pass. Very well said!
The issues USA raise are important to me too.
#1: Having a safe place to live is my number one priority - thus crime prevention should be the number one issue for all of these candidates. Just read the Police Log in this paper each week and you will see the same streets and neighborhoods listed over and over. Affordable housing is fine and noble but can this city afford all the social issues and problems that move in with it? Gangs in schools? Drug related crimes?
#2: Sensible City Planning: El Camino Hospital is about to open its new building. The only problem is that the only access to it is a skinny, little residential road called Grant Road. In a few years, 53 more families will also be moving into the new Summerhill Homes on the old farm there too. Is there anyone on the council who cares about the traffic congestion problems these two new developments will create?
It was ridiculous to consider putting Home Depot in a congested, shopping mall like San Antonio Shopping Center. A big item, box store like Home Depot belongs where Bed, Bath, & Beyond is located, near 101 behind Costco. San Antonio Center needs a major make-over. Sears is ugly, and the whole parking lot around that place is a gas/time wasting labyrinth with fender-bender prone blind spots all over. It would be a pleasant place to shop if it were more cohesive and walkable. For example, parents with strollers take a huge risk walking across the lot from Trader Joe's to Mervyns. Link it all up with pedestrian walkways and traffic free zones. And how about courting some shops that Mountain View residents can actually use ? I am always driving out of town to go to these shops: TJ Maxx, Old Navy, Borders, Toys R Us, Big 5 Sports. Move Bed, Bath & Beyond and Pet Smart there too.
#3 No one seems to care about local history. From the old Grant Road farm to Hangar One, history in this town is just torn up and paved over. Very sad. The Milk Pail is a quaint, enjoyable reminder of Mountain View's past, but even that has been nearly squeezed out of existence by surrounding chain stores. Mountain View is becoming more and more shabby and tacky. We need a city council who loves and respects this city's past and future and all of its residents.
They all need to stop sipping the lattes down there at City Hall and start waking up to the real issues in this city. Just vote them all out on Nov. 4th.
For me the important thing in choosing council members is how long they have lived in MV, did they raise kids here, do they have local council/commission experience and what are their academic backgrounds. Some of the candidates are totally illiterate when it comes to financial/government issues.