FLAPPING JACKS ... Project Safety Net's first annual Pancake Breakfast is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 20. The fundraiser is the brainchild of Palo Alto firefighters, who had been looking to forge a relationship with a local collaborative for youth well-being. Fire Department Captain Carter French said that when five youths died by suicide in 2009 and 2010, "It was difficult. ... We had to deal with that." Since that time, Project Safety Net has developed education, prevention and intervention strategies in order to boost youth well-being and mental health. For those pancake lovers who fear firefighter-cooked pancakes could end up a bit, well, burnt — never fear. Chefs from Facebook plan to do the actual pancake cooking. Other Pancake Breakfast activities will include a fire engine show, a Jaws of Life demonstration, door prizes and a safety fair. The breakfast will be held at Fire Station 6 on the Stanford campus, 711 Serra St., starting at 9 a.m. Tickets are $5.
FOLLOW THE MONEY ... While Palo Alto considers whether to wade into the national debate over political expenditures by corporations, state legislators are celebrating their own recent contribution to the controversial issue. State Assemblyman Rich Gordon, whose district includes Palo Alto and Menlo Park, this week celebrated a bill that was recently signed by Gov. Jerry Brown to add disclosure requirements for political contributors. Assembly Bill 481 targets "independent expenditure committees" — that is, those not affiliated with a particular candidate or a ballot measure. It requires disclosures of major independent expenditures before an election and disclosure of major top donors on all advertisement by the committees. It also holds the principal officers of the independent expenditure committees liable for potential ethics violations. The bill, which Gordon authored, received Brown's endorsement on Sept. 24. "The growth of independent expenditures makes appropriate disclosure all the more necessary," Gordon said in a statement this week. "In order for voters to make fully informed decisions, it is important they know who, if not the candidate or ballot measure campaign, is paying for political messaging and in what amounts."