News

County abruptly halts development-agreement talks for Stanford's expansion

Supervisor Joe Simitian cites university's proposed agreement with Palo Alto Unified, which ties school benefits to county approval

Citing significant concerns about Stanford University's newly announced deal with the Palo Alto Unified School District, Santa Clara County on Tuesday suspended indefinitely its negotiations with the university over a development agreement that would have governed Stanford's proposed expansion.

The county's decision to suspend the negotiations came just hours after the university and the school district administration announced a "school funding and mitigation agreement" under which Stanford would pay the district more than $120 million to account for the university's expansion and its projected impact on Palo Alto Unified enrollment. The agreement also called for Stanford to invest $15 million in a shared facility on district property and obligated the school district not to oppose any development that Stanford is proposing under the 2018 General Use Permit, a document that the county is now in the midst of approving.

Both district Superintendent Don Austin and Stanford President Marc Tessier-Lavigne lauded the agreement on Monday, with Austin calling it a "model of what is possible" and Tessier-Lavigne praising it for making Stanford's engagement in the Palo Alto school system "more systematic and organized."

At the same time, all the benefits in the proposed deal come with a critical condition that Simitian sees as a poison pill. It hinges on the county's approval of a "development agreement" with Stanford — a broad and wide-ranging contract that is expected to include conditions for Stanford to mitigate traffic impacts, preserving open space and providing other community benefits. In exchange, the county would allow Stanford to move ahead with its expansion plan, which includes 2.275 million new square feet of academic space and 40,000 square feet of child care space and other support facilities.

Stanford had also proposed including 2,600 student beds and 550 faculty and staff housing units in its plan, though the county indicated last month that it wants the university to provide at least 2,172 units of faculty and staff housing, along with 2,600 student beds.

Simitian told the Weekly that county staff was finalizing its "conditions of approval" for Stanford's proposed expansion, which were due to be finalized on April 30 and which were supposed to pave the way for development-agreement negotiations between the county and Stanford. The Monday announcement of a separate deal between Stanford and the school district upended that plan by creating a situation in which Palo Alto students are used as "bargaining chips" by Stanford, Simitian said.

He called the newly announced deal "regrettable." Because the agreement depends on the county's approval of the development agreement, which is now "suspended indefinitely," it effectively offers no benefits to the district, Simitian said. He also said the tentative deal, which the school board is scheduled to discuss at a special meeting on Tuesday evening, violates the ground rules that the county and Stanford had established for their development agreement negotiations. The rules specified that negotiations pertaining to the development agreement would only take place between the county's negotiating committee (which includes Simitian and Supervisor Cindy Chavez) and negotiating team and Stanford's negotiating committee and negotiating team.

"Unfortunately, the school district thinks it actually got something when it didn't — that's the crux of the matter," Simitian said. "Not only is there really no benefit to the board as it is structured, but it raises the potential concern about school kids in Palo Alto being used as a bargaining chip in respect to other important issues like housing, traffic and open space protection."

He said the county has no issues with the district and Stanford reaching bilateral agreements over mitigations. But by tying the benefits to the county's approval of a development agreement, Stanford is effectively forcing the county to go into development agreement negotiations "with a gun to our heads," something that Simitian said neither he nor his colleagues are prepared to do.

"What we're faced with now is, in what purports to be an agreement, is a pretty explicit threat: if you don't back off on expectations of traffic mitigations and open space protections, we won't honor our commitment that we made to the school kids in Palo Alto. That's not a good-faith effort."

Simitian said he had discussed his concerns two weeks ago with Austin, who had assured him that the district's deal with Stanford will not be contingent on the county's approval of the Stanford development agreement. But Simitian, a former Palo Alto Unified board member, also said he believes everyone in the school district was "well-intended and doing the best they could under difficult circumstances."

"As a former member of school board, I get the anxiety," Simitian said. "I think they were so anxious to get a deal that they took a non-deal and thought it was a deal. What they got now is not a deal. It's a pretense of a deal."

Simitian said that at this point, the county has no plans to start up conversations over a development agreement.

Jean McCown, Stanford's associate vice president for government and community relations, told the Weekly on Tuesday that the university has not been informed by the county or by Simitian about the suspension of the development-agreement process.

"We are surprised by such a decision because Supervisor Simitian and the county had actively encouraged us to engage with PAUSD as part of these negotiations, and we believe this discussion is not in violation of the ground rules for the development agreement process," McCown said in an email.

Stanford, she said, "has long maintained that a development agreement is essential to support the provision of community benefits such as those proposed to the school district in our agreement."

"In exchange for those community benefits, the development agreement provides Stanford with long-term certainty in support of its future plans," McCown wrote. "We look forward to entering into substantive negotiations to reach a mutually agreed upon project and package of community benefits."

Related content:

Over Simitian objections, school board voices support for Stanford agreement

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Comments

29 people like this
Posted by Jim H
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Apr 16, 2019 at 2:54 pm

Jim H is a registered user.

Is Simitian politely saying saying that the PAUSD leadership has no idea what they are doing?


59 people like this
Posted by With Joe
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 16, 2019 at 3:19 pm

Supe. Simitian - you did the right thing as usual. I am sure you continue to have the overwhelming support of people in Palo Alto, including those of us with kids in our schools.

Supervisor Austin - get back in step with Joe ASAP. There is no better negotiator. Respect the rules - no disrespect to you. United we win, divided we all fall.

Jean McCown - Save it for people who haven’t all heard it before from you. You and Stanford need to simply mitigate all the impacts from your mega development. Stop trying to divide us by manipulating the negotiations - it won’t work.

We are with you Joe.


37 people like this
Posted by Barron Park Donkey
a resident of Barron Park
on Apr 16, 2019 at 3:47 pm

Thank you Joe for saving PAUSD from itself. Stanford was using their tried-and-true "divide and conquer" tactic to pit education against everyone else.


42 people like this
Posted by Annette
a resident of College Terrace
on Apr 16, 2019 at 4:05 pm

Annette is a registered user.

Good for Joe Simitian for not accepting manipulation of Palo Alto's children. I still don't understand why Stanford doesn't build an elementary school. Adding hundreds of kids to Nixon and Escondido may work on paper, but in reality I don't think either school has much expansion capacity. And crowding elementary classrooms in order to accommodate university growth shifts a very unfair burden onto kids. This should be beneath Stanford.

I don't know much about Austin but I do know he is new to his job and this area. I wince when I think of a newbie being at the negotiating table with seasoned pros who are motivated to protect their GUP and have bucket loads of money w/which to bargain. PAUSD was seriously outmatched and out maneuvered here.


39 people like this
Posted by Simitian throws kids overboard
a resident of College Terrace
on Apr 16, 2019 at 4:15 pm

Simitian is betraying our students in order to serve his own political interests. The district negotiated an arrangement with Stanford that provides an ongoing revenue stream tied to the number of students, and in addition provides dollars for building facilities for PAUSD students. Simitian's complaint isn't that it's a bad deal. It's that it doesn't allow him and the other supes to trade away PAUSD's interests in order to get concessions on other issues.

Shame on Joe Simitian. When we get to the end of this and we have less dollars for students, we'll know who to blame.


37 people like this
Posted by Simitian bad faith
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Apr 16, 2019 at 4:42 pm

Joe has been lobbying PTA leaders for the last day to come out against the deal. Their response? No way, this is good for kids. It's sad to see that Joe has lost sight of what's important here.

Guess what, Joe. This isn't about you and your ego. This is about protecting our heat school district. Come back to your senses. Otherwise remember: you broke it, you bought it.


8 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2019 at 4:45 pm

Posted by Simitian throws kids overboard, a resident of College Terrace

>> Simitian's complaint isn't that it's a bad deal. It's that it doesn't allow him and the other supes to trade away PAUSD's interests in order to get concessions on other issues. [..] Shame on Joe Simitian. When we get to the end of this and we have less dollars for students, we'll know who to blame.

I don't see how you are addressing Simitian's actual arguments. Please walk me through it logically. Please assume that I'm a little obtuse and spell it all out.



29 people like this
Posted by Barron Park Donkey
a resident of Barron Park
on Apr 16, 2019 at 4:47 pm

As 'Simitian throws kids overboard' clearly shows, Stanford has successfully divided the community by pitting education against the rest of the community. Well-play Stanford. Took a play right out of POSTUS' handbook.


20 people like this
Posted by Mary O
a resident of Crescent Park
on Apr 16, 2019 at 5:07 pm

Mary O is a registered user.

I am so very confused by this. I was at the March 14th Town Hall that Sup. Simitian held to discuss the Development Agreement. Just before the town hall there was a rally organized by PTA leaders. My interpretation of those events was that the Board of Supes was encouraging PAUSD and Stanford to work out some sort of agreement that would be amenable to PAUSD since the County was limited in what it could ask of Stanford for PAUSD because of CEQA.

What did I miss? What are Stanford and PAUSD negotiating about if it's not about Stanford expanding and adding more students??? Seriously? What did I miss? Who has clarity on this issue? See link below to an article that discusses this.

From March 23rd. Web Link

["Simitian said the lack is a function of state law, which limits the county's ability to address school impacts as part of its environmental-review process.

"We don't have as many tools as we would like in the land use process to help our schools," Simitian said at the rally. "We can address traffic, we can address housing, we can address open-space protection, but what we don't have by virtue of state law is a lot of tools to help us help our local schools and the kids they serve."

Stanford's unwillingness to commit to these measures has frustrated many in the school district. However, Simitian expressed some hope that the district and Stanford will be able to reach an amicable resolution on school impacts in the coming months. Palo Alto Unified Superintendent Don Austin said the district and Stanford have agreed to start confidential discussions about benefits and mitigations.

Jean McCown, Stanford's assistant vice president and director of community relations, said in a statement on March 14 that the university "will seek to have the results of direct discussions between PAUSD and the university included as community benefits in the final agreement with the county."]




27 people like this
Posted by Simitian throws kids overboard
a resident of College Terrace
on Apr 16, 2019 at 5:17 pm

@Barron Park Donkey wants me to address Simitian's actual arguments. It's hard to tell what his "argument" is, but I'll try.

Simitian is saying that Stanford can use the agreement with PAUSD to put pressure on the county to back down on other issues: "What we're faced with now is, in what purports to be an agreement, is a pretty explicit threat: if you don't back off on expectations of traffic mitigations and open space protections, we won't honor our commitment that we made to the school kids in Palo Alto."

Except that what Simitian calls a "pretty explicit threat" doesn't exist: has Stanford actually said that? [Portion removed.]

Instead, Simitian has pulled the plug, not Stanford. If PAUSD doesn't get the benefits, it will be by Simitian's hand, not Stanford's. Why not wait and see if Stanford won't actually agree to what the county wants, and then pull the plug? That's always an option in a negotiation. What does the community gain by not even trying to negotiate.

Simitian calls Stanford's agreement to give PAUSD $140 million a "gun to our head." Looks more like Simitian wrestled the gun out of Stanford's hand, and managed to shoot both himself and (much more importantly) our students.


19 people like this
Posted by Mary O
a resident of Crescent Park
on Apr 16, 2019 at 5:40 pm

Mary O is a registered user.

@Simitian throws kids overboard. What is the threat? That if Stanford doesn't expand as they have put in a permit to do so (the GUP), that Stanford won't pay $5800 for each student that does NOT live in the housing that Stanford did NOT build because Stanford's expansion didn't happen? Someone correct me here, but I read the article about the potential deal between Stanford and PAUSD (and since this is all being negotiated in secret, these articles are all we have to go on.. if people have other sources, please post links) to mean that if Stanford's GUP is approved - in whatever form - that this deal would apply. If there's no expansion, then there's no need to discuss mitigation, right? Clarity here would help.


19 people like this
Posted by PTA mom
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 16, 2019 at 6:30 pm

The threat that Simitian has made to the school district is that there will be housing built but insufficient funding along with it. Simitian has set up a situation in which the schools could come up empty handed. I don't know how that's it his constituents interests but I'm used to politicians who figure they can get reelected no matter how badly they behave.


30 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Community Center
on Apr 16, 2019 at 7:43 pm

Funny seeing the Simitian groupies blindly follow him. He told the community how hard it would be to deliver what the schools need. So the District took him seriously and pursued a deal. Now he says they did too good a job and should leave it up to him. Unfortunately, that seems almost certain to leave our students with less.

Thanks to the community and PTA people who brought Stanford to the table. Joe, please stop your tantrum and do your job.


31 people like this
Posted by With Joe
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 16, 2019 at 8:30 pm

As is says here, “The rules specified that negotiations pertaining to the development agreement would only take place between the county's negotiating committee (which includes Simitian and Supervisor Cindy Chavez) and negotiating team and Stanford's negotiating committee and negotiating team.”

That’s the problem. PAUSD threw a spanner into a months long evolved negotiation and in doing so weakened it, Palo Alto and the rest of the County.

The comments here about Simitian are simply meritless and reveal either low information or the comments are from Stanford partisans.

As some here say - Stanford must be popping the champagne corks to toast its cleverly using PAUSD to divide the community. Why would any of you be happy about that? You also live here.

Those of us who have watched local politics for decades know that Joe considers our interests as his. He is incorruptible and formidable. Don’t think for a minute this is over.


26 people like this
Posted by Palo Altan
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Apr 16, 2019 at 8:55 pm

From the article, “Simitian said he had discussed his concerns two weeks ago with Austin, who had assured him that the district's deal with Stanford will not be contingent on the county's approval of the Stanford development agreement.”

Sounds like Stanford pulled the wool over Superintendent Austin’s eyes. I’m with longtime Palo Alto champion (and former PAUSD School Board Member) Joe Simitian on this one, not the new superintendent who has been in town less than a year.


26 people like this
Posted by Stanford Homeowner
a resident of Stanford
on Apr 16, 2019 at 9:52 pm

Joe Simitian has my support on this difficult negotiation. Stanford has no inherent right to develop endlessly in our community. Joe is looking out for the citizens and students that must live amidst this endless expansion. Stanford is pitting the PAUSD against the county and winning by dividing the community.
Joe was elected to protect our community not give Stanford whatever it wants. Thank you Joe for doing the right thing and calling out this deal for what it is..


27 people like this
Posted by PTA Mom
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 16, 2019 at 10:26 pm

Content-free posts from Simitian fans doesn't make up for the fact that he torpedoed a $140 million benefit for our schools. Maybe I haven't lived here for decades so haven't bought into the myth of St. Joe. What I see is another career politician who is putting ego and power over kids.


8 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 17, 2019 at 7:18 am

Posted by PTA Mom, a resident of Midtown

>> Content-free posts from Simitian fans doesn't make up for the fact that he torpedoed a $140 million benefit for our schools. Maybe I haven't lived here for decades so haven't bought into the myth of St. Joe. What I see is another career politician who is putting ego and power over kids.

Another ad-hominem attack on Simitian, but, you aren't actually addressing Simitian's point. Why can't PAUSD and Stanford draft an agreement for cost recovery that works regardless of the details regarding housing that the County works out with Stanford, instead of making the agreement contingent on specifics of the County-Stanford agreement?

And, can someone please explain to me how PAUSD isn't going to lose money on this deal? Or is the argument that PAUSD is going to suffer anyway, and, has to accept whatever crumbs are offered?


5 people like this
Posted by Simitian's folly
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Apr 17, 2019 at 9:39 am

[Post removed due to same poster using multiple names]


10 people like this
Posted by Barron Park Donkey
a resident of Barron Park
on Apr 17, 2019 at 10:34 am

There was never going to be a development agreement unless it included mitigation for traffic and housing, in addition to mitigation to PAUSD. Joe might approve the deal between Stanford and PAUSD, but do you really think Cindy will? No. She wants mitigation for housing and traffic. She has no reason to approve the DA. So the deal was dead as soon as PAUSD announced it was contingent on the DA. Stanford has lost NOTHING. Palo Alto and the surrounding communities have lost EVERYTHING. And Stanford has won by dividing the community.


18 people like this
Posted by We're all in this together.
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Apr 17, 2019 at 10:46 am

We're all in this together. is a registered user.

I think Joe got it right. Well done. Stanford was encouraged to talk with the district, but negotiations should happen in committee, and Stanford is expected to comply with the original agreement that the DA would not replace full mitigation of other environmental impacts identified in the EIR. That was always supposed to be a separate negotiation--and Stanford understood that going in.

Sup. Austin is new and learning the ropes. Stanford deliberately is making those ropes a tangled web. Jean McCown has been duplicitous throughout this process...and Stanford is either encouraging her or tolerating it. Either way, Stanford's behavior has been a disappointment throughout.


10 people like this
Posted by commonsense
a resident of Professorville
on Apr 17, 2019 at 1:13 pm

commonsense is a registered user.

This is a couple million square feet over decades while there are tens of millions of office square feet either under construction or planned in the county right now. Why is everyone so concerned about this drop in the bucket?


13 people like this
Posted by chris
a resident of University South
on Apr 17, 2019 at 2:16 pm

Why are people defending Simitian? The PAUSD got a fair deal. Now it’s time for Simitian get a fair deal. If PAUSD deal is fair, it does nor affect the county deal.

I think most people can see through the smoke Simitian is blowing.

I hope the Weekly is strong enough to call him out.


5 people like this
Posted by Barron Park Donkey
a resident of Barron Park
on Apr 17, 2019 at 5:13 pm

Chris you have exactly the attitude Stanford wants: We got ours, now you go get yours. Divide and conquer, and in the end we all lose and Stanford wins.


9 people like this
Posted by chris
a resident of University South
on Apr 17, 2019 at 5:27 pm

Donkey,

Your attitude is what makes it difficult to get things done around here. The Stanford PAUSD deal does not affect the county deal. The county and Stanford can negotiate whatever deal they want to regardless of the PAUSD deal. You are the one playing games [portion removed.]


10 people like this
Posted by Crescent Park Res
a resident of Crescent Park
on Apr 17, 2019 at 7:09 pm

Crescent Park Res is a registered user.

"Jean McCown has been duplicitous throughout this process...and Stanford is either encouraging her or tolerating it. Either way, Stanford's behavior has been a disappointment throughout."

I haven't read in the papers or heard anything at any of the public meetings I attended, that would give credence to the above statement. I am very, very tired of two things around here that have gotten much, much worse since the 2000 GUP. First, the non-stop attacks on Stanford and/or their employees including, Jean McCown. Second, the over-a-certain-age-crowd who are clinging to some romantic notion of what the past, and anything associated with it, was like around here

Sup. Simitian is not a saint. He's a person. He makes mistakes. Everyone does. First mistake - "secret negotiations." Absurd. Just absurd. Second mistake - telling PAUSD to negotiate with Stanford but then adding restrictive controlling criteria. Another mistake - thinking that the residentialists of Palo Alto are going to be okay with having him insist that Stanford build tons of housing in Palo Alto or within the school district boundaries. The "clinging-to-the-past" crew has joined with the residentialists to make sure it doesn't happen.






7 people like this
Posted by Father of two
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 17, 2019 at 7:40 pm

Joe, you got me confused. PAUSD is fighting for its kids and staff. There is no clause to require Stanford to mitigate the school districts needs as far as I know.

What county leaders care about is the so called affordable housing. It's good chance to use Stanford’s money to achieve your political goals. What a good plan!

Sorry I have to say it's not fair to force Stanford to build almost 4x units for its staff and faculty. If county wants to build affordable housing, use your own money. It's the county that uses the agreement as the bargaining chip.


2 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 17, 2019 at 8:11 pm

Posted by Crescent Park Res, a resident of Crescent Park

>> Second, the over-a-certain-age-crowd who are clinging to some romantic notion of what the past, and anything associated with it, was like around here

Trees, bicycle paths, recycling, parks, schools-- "romantic", or, just common sense? Past, or, future?

>> Second mistake - telling PAUSD to negotiate with Stanford but then adding restrictive controlling criteria.

Is Stanford part of "Palo Alto", or, not? Partially yes, partially no. PAUSD is "Palo Alto", SRP is "Palo Alto", but, Stanford's campus core is not. Stanford employs how many people? I just spent a few minutes on the web-- very hard to tell. It looks like about 15,000 total faculty and staff on the academic side. Stanford Health-- including medical school, Lucille Packard, doctors office, and the hospital proper?

The children's hospital site gives a solid number: "Stanford Children’s Health has 1,058 medical staff, 4,618 employees and 631 volunteers."

Medical School: Perhaps 2455 total?

Hospital proper: Can't find it on the hospital website. Wikipedia says "1,910 with an additional 850 interns and residents, as well as nearly 1,500 registered nurses"

Total for health ~ 10,000?

Grand total for all Stanford-- ~25,000? However many it is, Palo Alto has no control over it. Is Palo Alto expected to house all those employees? Jobs/housing imbalance -- is that Palo Alto's problem?

Santa Clara County is attempting to manage future growth. Thank you SCC.

>> Another mistake - thinking that the residentialists of Palo Alto are going to be okay with having him insist that Stanford build tons of housing in Palo Alto or within the school district boundaries. The "clinging-to-the-past" crew has joined with the residentialists to make sure it doesn't happen.

So, if Stanford doesn't house the proposed growth, who will? Palo Alto?


3 people like this
Posted by Father of two
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 17, 2019 at 8:20 pm

Dear neighbors, have you realized the county officials' biggest goal is affordable housing?

If there is no GUP agreement, what does Palo Alto lose?


4 people like this
Posted by Crescent Park Res
a resident of Crescent Park
on Apr 17, 2019 at 8:45 pm

Crescent Park Res is a registered user.

@Anon. Stanford Hospital is in Palo Alto, so they had a say there. Stanford West Apartments are in Palo Alto, so they had a say there as well. In fact, they had to approve both of those projects.

Stanford and Palo Alto made an agreement back in the 1950's regarding Stanford Research Park and the Stanford Mall. Stanford annexed the lands into the City's jurisdiction so that they City would get the taxes - wage, sales and property. Palo Alto had a say there. They were a partner.

Palo Alto benefited enormously from all of these arrangements and as long as Stanford was the only game in town things were fine. Stanford ees lived in Palo Alto as did many of their graduate students, post docs, visiting scholars, etc.

But, when the internet really took off, Google, Facebook, and many more tech companies, emerged and basically took over the area - and the housing.

Stanford has been in overdrive building housing to accomodate these changes.

Palo Alto has down nothing but complain and watch their real estate prices soar.


4 people like this
Posted by BlarryG
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Apr 17, 2019 at 9:30 pm

Stanford is giving $120M plus $15M for a shared (? by whom) facility on Palo Alto property. $120M sounds like a lot, but it's like $5800 per new student/year.

What is the true cost of an additional student? I heard district claims that infrastructure is amortized across all students in the district so total spend per student isn't as high as you think ... but does that include depreciation on buildings, maintenance ... teachers salaries INCLUDING the cost of their pensions. Then base mitigation around that. It doesn't have to be 1:1. Some taxes come back etc, it just shouldn't create a subsidy.


Like this comment
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 17, 2019 at 9:32 pm

Posted by Crescent Park Res, a resident of Crescent Park

>> @Anon. Stanford Hospital is in Palo Alto, so they had a say there.

You make a good point about the hospital(s): the city boundary cuts through the middle, with, it appears, the intention of keeping the medical school/research part -out- of the city, and the services side of the two hospitals in. That would put very roughly 17,500 university jobs -outside- an 7500 hospital/service -inside- the City of Palo Alto.

But, my real issue is this: "somebody" decided that each Bay Area area/city/ was supposed to balance jobs/housing. I think this jobs/housing thing is very misguided, BTW, but, it seems to be a religious principle now. Well, if jobs/housing have to be balanced, the only entity that can push that for Stanford is the County. Palo Alto can't do it. ~70% of Stanford's jobs are outside the city.

Therefore-- I think it is reasonable for the SCC to pursue more housing inside Stanford, while balancing the impact on PAUSD as well.


1 person likes this
Posted by chris
a resident of University South
on Apr 18, 2019 at 12:23 am

Anon,

The school district worked out a deal that works for it. It is smart foe PAUSD not to get sucked into Simitian’s dealings. Let Simitian work out a deal for the county that stands on its own.


4 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Apr 18, 2019 at 2:25 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

“Well, if jobs/housing have to be balanced, the only entity that can push that for Stanford is the County. Palo Alto can't do it. ~70% of Stanford's jobs are outside the city.”

Wrong- remember that most of the Medical Center, all of the Shopping Center and all of the Research Park were annexed to Palo Alto BEFORE they were developed and thus Palo Alto has total control of those developments.

Years ago I advocated for housing in the Research Park and Palo Alto strongly opposed doing so.


3 people like this
Posted by Bill
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 26, 2019 at 6:51 am

Dr. Don Austin, Superintendent of PAUSD School board, arrived May 2018, and is already pulling similar stunts as the prior Superintendent Max McGee.

It's no different that Max McGee keeping the parents in the dark about the sexual assaults at Palo Alto High School. Shame on you Don Austin.

Keeping the community in the dark and conducting meetings without the public's knowledge. What else has Don Austin done that the Palo Alto Community is not aware of.

Shame on the existing Palo Alto School Board for approving "the Agreement" with Stanford, which isn't an agreement. Would any of these Board members, and Don Austin agree to an agreement to purchase a house, with the provision that the agreement will only be good if it rains on April 30, 2019? Sounds ridiculous, doesn't it, well, this is essentially what the school board agreed to and it's an embarrassment. These school board members need to be fired.

Also, Ken Dauber and Todd Collins both supposedly recused from deliberations... REALLY... there have been many, many, meetings, discussions about the Stanford issue, each have spoken about it. We all know how these things REALLY work.


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