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LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
Santa Clara County, CA November 4, 2008 Election
Smart Voter

Ginger Summit
Answers Questions

Candidate for
Council Member; Town of Los Altos Hills


The questions were prepared by the League of Women Voters of Los Altos/Mtn. View Area and asked of all candidates for this office.
Read the answers from all candidates (who have responded).

Questions & Answers

1. What strategies would you use to try to meet the fair share housing needs allocated to Los Altos Hills for the new Housing Element currently under development, particularly the 27 units to be affordable to those earning less than 50% of area median income ("AMI")* and the 19 units to be affordable to those earning less than 80% of AMI? Please prioritize these strategies according to which you think would be most effective for Los Altos Hills. *AMI is $106,100 for a family of four, so 50% of AMI for a family of four is $53,050 and 80% is $84,880.

This issue was addressed in the Housing Element of the General Plan issued in January 2004, and is being re-examined by the Metropolitan Planning Group in the coming year. Los Altos Hills us unique in that most of our land is zoned minimum one acre, and there is no commercial development or public transportation available. To meet the requirements in 2004, the council evaluated all existing secondary units and encouraged new construction to include secondary units as long as they can be accommodated in the maximum development allowance. To fulfill the obligation to provide for additional needs, Los Altos Hills annually contributes funds to organizations such as MidPeninsula Housing Coalition and Project Match, in neighboring communities. I will encourage these efforts so that Los Altos Hills can be a responsible partner in the larger Bay Area community.

2. What ideas do you have for making Los Altos Hills a more sustainable community in the decade ahead?

The town has taken dramatic positive steps to demonstrate sustainable building practices, in the construction of the new Town Hall. The grounds surrounding Town Hall feature native plants and low water consumption. The town has just adopted the use of the Green Star Plan and LEED (Leadership in Energy Efficient Design) to provide guidelines for remodels (optional) and new construction. These guidelines will contribute to the total value of the home while providing substantial savings in energy use and costs.

3. What changes might be made to better balance the interests of particular groups within the community with the needs of the town as a whole?

Our town does not have a community center, and at the present time meetings and recreation activities take place in the current Town Hall and small Parks and Recreation building. Hopefully with the recent opening of a new public school, the town will be able to use the multiuse room for additional gatherings, as well as the new playground. The town is also restoring the Little League fields, and there is hope for building a soccer field as well. With these improvements, as well as upgrades to the pathway system and restoration of the Westwind Barn, the town will be better able to meet the recreational demands of a growing active population. One group whose needs must be addressed is seniors who wish to continue living in their homes. While the county does provide many support services, I will work with Palo Alto Avenidas Senior Center as well as the Senior Center in Los Altos to provide the best possible services for many of our residents who wish to continue living in their homes in the hills.

Responses to questions asked of each candidate are reproduced as submitted to the League.  Candidates' responses are not edited or corrected by the League.

Read the answers from all candidates (who have responded).

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Created from information supplied by the candidate: September 20, 2008 12:47
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