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Archive for June, 2007

Watch that speed in Orinda today

A reminder to anyone driving around Orinda today: slow down.

Police Chief Bill French is reporting that today’s “Slow Down Lamorinda” crackdown on Rheem Boulevard at Glorietta is going well, with officers issuing around 20 tickets before lunch.

In other news from the Orinda police logs: As summer heats up and school winds down, we’re seeing more instances of teen drinking.

On May 16, an 18-year-old Miramonte student was arrested for a DUI and a hit-and-run accident on Moraga Way. Seems he left the scene of the collision, and was driven to a Berkeley hospital by his friends.

On June 1, a 16-year-old Miramonte boy was arrested for stealing two bottles of Captain Morgan rum from Safeway.

On June 2, police stopped a 17-year-old Orinda girl on Moraga Way and asked her to step out of the car when they smelled alcohol. Instead, she sped away, and when contacted by police later, declined to talk on advice of her attorney.

Posted on Wednesday, June 6th, 2007
Under: Orinda | No Comments »

Grad Night previews this week

Lamorinda’s three high schools are in a state of high excitement (and mild panic) with finals underway and graduation this Friday. But if you were wondering about the sound of hammering and buzz saws echoing from the Acalanes, Campolindo and Miramonte campuses, it’s parent volunteers doing final set-up for Grad Night — the traditional all-night extravaganza for graduating seniors. The community is invited to sneak a peek on Thursday evening from 7 till 9 p.m. and frankly, it’s always a blast. We’ve already peeked at Campolindo’s Disney-themed decor and it’s spectacular — can’t wait to see Miramonte’s Midway (the carnival game decor’s on display from 6 till 8, the other schools go 7 till 9) and Acalanes’ James Bond splash for the Class of 007. It’s free, but donations are always welcome.
Jackie Burrell

Posted on Wednesday, June 6th, 2007
Under: Schools | No Comments »

Moraga talks about specific plan

The Moraga Town Council is holding a special meeting Wednesday to talk about the Moraga Center Specific Plan.

The town has been working on specific plans for the Moraga and Rheem shopping centers since 2002.

Late last month, the town found out that it needs to approve a specific plan project description that meets the state’s minimum housing density requirements or it risks losing about $250,000 annually, according to a staff report.

That money is to be used this year for a Camino Pablo paving project.

The proposed plan for the area calls for 90,000 square feet of new retail and entertainment space, 50,000 square feet of new office and support space and a maximum of 720 housing units. It also identifies a site for a community center/gymnasium.

The meeting begins at 7:30 p.m. in the La Sala Building at the Hacienda de las Flores, 2100 Donald Drive.

Posted on Wednesday, June 6th, 2007
Under: Moraga | No Comments »

Drat! Not again. Roads still bumpy.

Both of Lamorinda’s road measures died at the polls Tuesday night.

Lafayette’s Measure C, a $150 annual parcel tax bid to fix cracked and pothole-riddled residential streets, captured 62.9 percent of the vote. It needed a two-thirds approval.

Orinda’s Measure E, a $58.6 million bond to fix roads, drains and water pipes, also fell short of the required two-thirds approval with 63.4 percent of the vote.

In Lafayette, where more than 100 supporters have spent weeks lobbying voters, campaign volunteers expressed disappointment over the loss.

Posted on Tuesday, June 5th, 2007
Under: Lafayette, Lamorinda, Orinda, Roads | 2 Comments »

Polling place snafu hits Orinda

The Times’ Political editor Lisa Vorderbrueggen is reporting on her blog this afternoon that Orinda’s special election has already hit a snag, and the polls aren’t even open yet.

She says:

A semi-truck attempting to deliver election equipment to an Orinda polling site was turned away this afternoon because the entrance road is under some type of construction.

Ordinarily, this would be a plain old inconvenience but this is the eve of road bond elections in Orinda and Lafayette that would raise money for street repairs. The bonds require two-thirds voter approval to pass, which means proponents need every vote they can get.

The polling site is at the Santa Maria Church at 20 Santa Maria Way in Orinda.

Election chief Steve Weir says they will attempt a re-delivery early in the morning using a smaller vehicle as cars and vans seem to be getting through.

Weir hopes he won’t have to move the polling site at the last minute because there won’t be time to notify voters.

But if you arrive at Santa Maria Church and there’s no voting equipment, look around for signs telling you the new location or call the Contra Costa Elections Division at 925-335-7800.

Posted on Monday, June 4th, 2007
Under: Orinda | No Comments »

Two bicyclists crash at Briones Sunday

Wondering what those choppers were doing at Briones Regional Park Sunday afternoon?

Rescuing two bicyclists who crashed into each other, according to our police reporter.

The accident occurred at 2:33 p.m. on the Table Top Trail, said Battalion Chief Ed Borden of the Moraga-Orinda Fire District.

The injuries were not life-threatening, but the area was too remote for ambulances to reach. Two helicopters flew the riders to John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek, Borden said.

A third CALSTAR Air Ambulance remained on the scene later Sunday after developing potential mechanical problems, authorities said.

Posted on Sunday, June 3rd, 2007
Under: Uncategorized | No Comments »

Fewer students spells funding woes

Budget cuts are possible at the Acalanes Union High School District as officials face a drop in enrollment that’s projected to continue for about 10 years.

Administrators are looking at trimming $450,000 from next year’s budget by reducing some employee hours and not filling positions after people retire.

About 5,900 students attend the district’s schools. That’s about 50 students less than the year before. Those numbers are expected to drop by more than 500 students between 2007 and 2012. And that means less money for the district because the state gives funding to schools based on the number of students.

The drop in the size of the student body is part of a natural cycle as young families move into the community, send their children to school and then watch their children graduate and move on, officials explain. Click here to see a chart (in PDF format) showing the district’s enrollment pattern since 1970.

Katherine Tam

Posted on Friday, June 1st, 2007
Under: Lamorinda | No Comments »