News

Palo Alto banned from bringing back residents-only requirement for Foothills Park

Federal judge signs injunction that was part of settlement between City Council and coalition led by ACLU, NAACP

Effective Jan. 25, the city of Palo Alto can't bar people from entering Foothills Park based on their city of residence. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

Palo Alto is permanently barred from limiting access to visitors to Foothills Park on the basis of residency under an injunction that a U.S. district court judge signed off on Monday.

The injunction, which was issued by U.S. District Judge Edward Davila, is the product of a settlement between the city and a coalition of plaintiffs that included the American Civil Liberties Union, the NAACP and residents from Palo Alto and other Peninsula cities. The City Council approved the settlement on Nov. 2, at which time it also voted to repeal the 1965 ordinance that restricted access to the 1,400-acre preserve to Palo Alto residents and their guests.

The permanent injunction that took effect Monday ensures that the city will not be able to reverse that decision. It states that the city and its employees are "permanently enjoined from restricting or prohibiting access to Foothills Park on the basis of Palo Alto residency." It also prohibits the city from "discriminating between Palo Alto residents and nonresidents as to access to Foothills Park," though the prohibition does not apply to facilities within the park.

The injunction also officially snuffs out Palo Alto's earlier plan to bring the issue of Foothills Park access to voters in 2022. That was part of the plan the council approved in August, at which time it also launched a pilot program that would allow up to 50 nonresidents into the park daily. In September, the coalition of plaintiffs filed the lawsuit, charging that the policy violates First Amendment rights, including free speech and freedom of assembly.

The lawsuit also stated that the city's ban on nonresidents "traces its roots to an era when racial discrimination in and around the City was open and notorious" and cites mid-20th century policies such as redlining and "block busting" that prevented Black people from buying homes in Palo Alto.

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"It is long past time to relegate this unlawful exclusion to the dustbin of history," the suit states.

The council approved the settlement on Nov. 2 by a 5-2 vote, with council members Greg Tanaka and Lydia Kou dissenting, paving the way for the city to officially drop the residents-only restriction on Dec. 17.

The injunction prohibits the city from placing on a future ballot or supporting "any referendum or initiative that has the purpose or effect of prohibiting or restricting access to Foothills Park by nonresidents of Palo Alto."

With the preserve now open to all, Palo Alto has seen a surge of visitors, particularly on weekends and holidays. One weekend in late December, shortly after the park was opened to all, the preserve saw roughly six times as many visitors as in the prior year.

Even before the November decision, the number of Foothills Park visitors has been on the rise. According to a report from Daren Anderson, division manager at Community Services Department, about 222,608 people visited the park last year, an increase of 42.5% over 2019, when the park saw 156,250 visitors. The report states that visitation levels have remained consistent over the years at about 150,000 people annually, with somewhat higher levels in 2011 and 2012.

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Before the policy changed on Dec. 17, the city had turned away 4,260 vehicles in 2020 because of resident status, up by 13% from the prior year. The city also reported 523 "dog turn-aways" last year, an increase of 55.2% from 2019 (dogs are not allowed at the preserve on weekends and holidays).

Now, spurred by stories about hazardous traffic conditions and environmental degradation, the council is preparing to institute new restrictions for visiting Foothills Park. On Jan. 19, the council directed staff to prepare an emergency measure that would lower the cap on the number of people who can visit Foothills Park at one time from the current level of 750 to 400 (though staff has leeway to raise it to 500). Prior to last November, the visitor cap was 1,000 visitors.

The council also agreed last week to institute a $6 entrance fee for the park on an emergency basis, while allowing the Parks and Recreation Commission to come up with its own recommendation on fees and access limitations.

The Parks and Recreation Commission is scheduled to discuss Foothills Park at its Tuesday night meeting. The council plans to adopt the emergency measure creating the fee and the new entrance limit on Feb. 1.

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Palo Alto banned from bringing back residents-only requirement for Foothills Park

Federal judge signs injunction that was part of settlement between City Council and coalition led by ACLU, NAACP

by / Palo Alto Weekly

Uploaded: Mon, Jan 25, 2021, 4:37 pm

Palo Alto is permanently barred from limiting access to visitors to Foothills Park on the basis of residency under an injunction that a U.S. district court judge signed off on Monday.

The injunction, which was issued by U.S. District Judge Edward Davila, is the product of a settlement between the city and a coalition of plaintiffs that included the American Civil Liberties Union, the NAACP and residents from Palo Alto and other Peninsula cities. The City Council approved the settlement on Nov. 2, at which time it also voted to repeal the 1965 ordinance that restricted access to the 1,400-acre preserve to Palo Alto residents and their guests.

The permanent injunction that took effect Monday ensures that the city will not be able to reverse that decision. It states that the city and its employees are "permanently enjoined from restricting or prohibiting access to Foothills Park on the basis of Palo Alto residency." It also prohibits the city from "discriminating between Palo Alto residents and nonresidents as to access to Foothills Park," though the prohibition does not apply to facilities within the park.

The injunction also officially snuffs out Palo Alto's earlier plan to bring the issue of Foothills Park access to voters in 2022. That was part of the plan the council approved in August, at which time it also launched a pilot program that would allow up to 50 nonresidents into the park daily. In September, the coalition of plaintiffs filed the lawsuit, charging that the policy violates First Amendment rights, including free speech and freedom of assembly.

The lawsuit also stated that the city's ban on nonresidents "traces its roots to an era when racial discrimination in and around the City was open and notorious" and cites mid-20th century policies such as redlining and "block busting" that prevented Black people from buying homes in Palo Alto.

"It is long past time to relegate this unlawful exclusion to the dustbin of history," the suit states.

The council approved the settlement on Nov. 2 by a 5-2 vote, with council members Greg Tanaka and Lydia Kou dissenting, paving the way for the city to officially drop the residents-only restriction on Dec. 17.

The injunction prohibits the city from placing on a future ballot or supporting "any referendum or initiative that has the purpose or effect of prohibiting or restricting access to Foothills Park by nonresidents of Palo Alto."

With the preserve now open to all, Palo Alto has seen a surge of visitors, particularly on weekends and holidays. One weekend in late December, shortly after the park was opened to all, the preserve saw roughly six times as many visitors as in the prior year.

Even before the November decision, the number of Foothills Park visitors has been on the rise. According to a report from Daren Anderson, division manager at Community Services Department, about 222,608 people visited the park last year, an increase of 42.5% over 2019, when the park saw 156,250 visitors. The report states that visitation levels have remained consistent over the years at about 150,000 people annually, with somewhat higher levels in 2011 and 2012.

Before the policy changed on Dec. 17, the city had turned away 4,260 vehicles in 2020 because of resident status, up by 13% from the prior year. The city also reported 523 "dog turn-aways" last year, an increase of 55.2% from 2019 (dogs are not allowed at the preserve on weekends and holidays).

Now, spurred by stories about hazardous traffic conditions and environmental degradation, the council is preparing to institute new restrictions for visiting Foothills Park. On Jan. 19, the council directed staff to prepare an emergency measure that would lower the cap on the number of people who can visit Foothills Park at one time from the current level of 750 to 400 (though staff has leeway to raise it to 500). Prior to last November, the visitor cap was 1,000 visitors.

The council also agreed last week to institute a $6 entrance fee for the park on an emergency basis, while allowing the Parks and Recreation Commission to come up with its own recommendation on fees and access limitations.

The Parks and Recreation Commission is scheduled to discuss Foothills Park at its Tuesday night meeting. The council plans to adopt the emergency measure creating the fee and the new entrance limit on Feb. 1.

Comments

Douglas Moran
Registered user
Barron Park
on Jan 25, 2021 at 6:53 pm
Douglas Moran, Barron Park
Registered user
on Jan 25, 2021 at 6:53 pm

When, oh when, with the Weekly stop pushing the basic lies of the LaDoris Cordell/.../NAACP/ACLU lawsuit: "redlining and 'block busting' that prevented Black people from buying homes in Palo Alto."*

- "block busting" was a practice by real estate agents to profit by using fear-inducing tactics to encourage existing homeowners to sell. The result was a substantial INCREASE in the number of Black homeowners in that neighborhood. So somehow this practice supposedly would PREVENT Blacks from buying homes.

- "redlining" was when banks and similar financial companies would refuse to provide loans ... inside the redlined area because it was predominantly non-White and poor. Does that sound like Palo Alto of the 1950s and 1960s?

And this article fails to provide balance by including evidence contradicting this claim. For example:
- the annexation of the Ventura neighborhood which was predominantly Black homeowners.
- Eichler's non-discrimination policy on selling houses in his developments.
- pattern of Palo Altans voting against discriminatory measures during that time period.

----
* These falsehoods have been pointed out repeatedly by many, including me, over the past many months, and consequently, qualify as being intended to deceive - the difference between merely being untrue and being a lie.


Miguel G.
Registered user
another community
on Jan 25, 2021 at 8:31 pm
Miguel G., another community
Registered user
on Jan 25, 2021 at 8:31 pm

Do dogs have to be on leash on weekdays? My two pitbulls like to run and chase things but I do not want to get cited or anything.


Park goer
Registered user
Midtown
on Jan 25, 2021 at 9:06 pm
Park goer, Midtown
Registered user
on Jan 25, 2021 at 9:06 pm

@Miguel: your dogs do need to be on-leash at Foothills Park and it doesn't matter what time of day. I've had rangers talk with me about this at Windy Hill. The point is that these places are nature preserves first and foremost. So your dog shouldn't be chasing things or digging holes because the whole point is that nature comes first, not us and not our dogs. That makes sense to me.


Jerry Underdal
Registered user
Barron Park
on Jan 25, 2021 at 11:25 pm
Jerry Underdal, Barron Park
Registered user
on Jan 25, 2021 at 11:25 pm

Where Douglas Moran sees a lie, I see imprecise language. The wording “policies such as redlining and "block busting" that prevented Black people from buying homes in Palo Alto” is from the article. I would be surprised if it was also in the ACLU/NAACP filing.

Prevention of home sales to black buyers in Palo Alto came first. The blockbusting and redlining came later and contributed greatly to the racially segregated housing patterns we see now.

The blockbusting wasn't done in Palo Alto neighborhoods. It was across the county line in the neighborhoods of unincorporated East Palo Alto. Real estate speculators would frighten white home owners on a street where a black family had moved in with dire warnings that home values were sure to plunge and now was the time to sell. The anxious homeowners would sell their homes to the real estate profiteers who had issued the warning. They, in turn, would sell the properties at a significant profit to buyers drawn by advertising campaigns directed at black home hunters throughout the Bay Area.

The result was that within six years of the 1954 sale to a black buyer of a home in a whites-only East Palo Alto neighborhood, the population of East Palo Alto was 82% black, according to Richard Rothstein, author of "The Color of Law." Blockbusting didn't prevent Blacks from buying homes in Palo Alto. Rather, it was a harmful product of the prejudices, real estate practices and financial regulations that *did* prevent black people from buying in Palo Alto.

Likewise, the practice of "redlining” was not applied in Palo Alto. It was, however, broadly applied in East Palo Alto. Property owners there were unable to benefit fully from home ownership in the racially segregated community that developed as a consequence, in part, of early barriers to black home ownership in Palo Alto.


ParkBiker
Registered user
Palo Alto Orchards
on Jan 26, 2021 at 12:41 am
ParkBiker, Palo Alto Orchards
Registered user
on Jan 26, 2021 at 12:41 am

Foothills park, in truth, was a motivated by prejudice... Again st wealthy white owners in Los Altos hills Woodside and Portola Valley.

As far as I remember, The lawsuit allows Palo Alto to charge its residence plus than others to access the park. Charging a fee will reduce the people who were less considerate about their dog's poop and about tromping off trail. Can we get FasTrak to work for the park gate?

And, I hope bikes stay free: earn by burn


cmarg
Registered user
Palo Alto High School
on Jan 26, 2021 at 10:57 am
cmarg, Palo Alto High School
Registered user
on Jan 26, 2021 at 10:57 am

Please give ownership to the county. Why should us homeowners have to pay anything given it is open to all. It makes no sense to have those of us, especially those not part of the wealthy crowd, to pay for this park if it is open to all.


srh813
Registered user
Palo Verde
on Jan 26, 2021 at 11:06 am
srh813, Palo Verde
Registered user
on Jan 26, 2021 at 11:06 am

I have a question about fees. Will Palo Alto residents be required to pay a fee to get in to Foothills Park?


Hinrich
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Jan 26, 2021 at 11:07 am
Hinrich, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Jan 26, 2021 at 11:07 am

This is a sad loss for the community. The idea that the policy of the preserve was in any way racist is cruel activist fantasy. The left is pushing 'equity' everywhere these days. 'Equity' means that everyone must be given a share of everything. 'Equity' means redistribution. 'Equity' means that those who did not build it are owed a share as 'stakeholders'. Like communism. A vocal minority shouted over the vote of the community. 'Equity' took the preserve.


JB
Registered user
Evergreen Park
on Jan 26, 2021 at 11:29 am
JB, Evergreen Park
Registered user
on Jan 26, 2021 at 11:29 am

Hello. Palo Alto city council recently formulated an emergency response to the crowding at Foothills Park. This will be effective as of February 20, I believe. On February 1, there will be another city council meeting to formalize park regulations, including daily park limits, entrance fees, and possible yearly permits for park entrance (about $40-50 for PA residents and about $60-70 for non residents). I don’t know if this is per person or per car. As of right now, the emergency measure includes a 400 person park limit and a daily fee of $6 per person. They are also considering reduced fees for seniors, students, and low-income park users.

Tonight, there is a Palo Alto Parks and Recreation Zoom meeting starting at 7 PM. People can express their opinions during this Zoom webinar, I believe. You can call 669-900-6833 and use Meeting ID 999 3789 9745.

You can also contact PA city council members through the link below to express your opinions and join the city council Zoom webinar on February 1 to express your opinions. It’s good for everyone concerned to have their voices heard so that our precious nature preserve can be protected and serve park users in the fairest possible manner. Good luck to all!

Web Link


Barron Parker Too
Registered user
Barron Park
on Jan 26, 2021 at 11:38 am
Barron Parker Too, Barron Park
Registered user
on Jan 26, 2021 at 11:38 am

@Hinrich
Beautifully stated! "Equity" is the demand by a small number of activists for equality of all outcomes, based on both immutable characteristics such as race and sex, as well as declared characteristics such as gender.

For example, in a symphony orchestra, a demand for "equity" means that if the population is 30% Hispanic, then 30% of the orchestra members must be Hispanic. Likewise with employment at universities and corporations. The actual percentage of qualified people is irrelevant to "equity".


Duveneck
Registered user
Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jan 26, 2021 at 11:52 am
Duveneck, Duveneck/St. Francis
Registered user
on Jan 26, 2021 at 11:52 am

If Midpeninsula Open Space is willing, the park/preserve could be well managed by them, as are other local preserves. This would eliminate picnic tables, BBQs, camping sites and other amenities and be more in keeping with the kind of place that this was supposed to be. City Council, please seriously consider this suggestion.


wildlife is my concern
Registered user
Midtown
on Jan 26, 2021 at 2:35 pm
wildlife is my concern, Midtown
Registered user
on Jan 26, 2021 at 2:35 pm

I grew up in Palo Alto and I have been here off and on since the 1960s. I am of Spanish decent, although most people forget around me so I have heard all sorts of raciest comments from fellow Palo Alton's, with the "Oh I don't mean you" when they remember. That being said, I don't think this is raciest. It may have started that way, but I don't want to share Foothill Park. I don't want the crowds that might disturb the wildlife, I don't want drones flying around the sky and I don't want people walk around with loud radios like I have seen at Rancho San Antonio. With less access rangers are able to keep this in check, so the wildlife is not disturbed.
Furthermore, what is the difference of between an HOA in a gated condo and the residents are the only ones able to use the pool, tennis court or hot tub. When you move to Palo Alto you should have understood this was part of the deal to pay for this beautiful park. I have always accepted that my property tax goes to keeping this park and I am glad to pay for it.


Donya
Registered user
Barron Park
on Jan 26, 2021 at 2:43 pm
Donya, Barron Park
Registered user
on Jan 26, 2021 at 2:43 pm

@Miguel said: "Do dogs have to be on leash on weekdays? My two pitbulls like to run and chase things but I do not want to get cited or anything."

I can't believe that Miguel is serious. Let loose 2 pit bulls in Foothills Preserve? To scare and chase wildlife? [Portion removed.]

Just as you can't let your dogs run unleashed on Palo Alto pubic areas (or really any other city) you can not let your dogs run unleashed in Foothills Preserve or any other preserve or park.


wildlife is my concern
Registered user
Midtown
on Jan 26, 2021 at 3:48 pm
wildlife is my concern, Midtown
Registered user
on Jan 26, 2021 at 3:48 pm
R. Cavendish
Registered user
another community
on Jan 26, 2021 at 4:01 pm
R. Cavendish, another community
Registered user
on Jan 26, 2021 at 4:01 pm

quote: "I can't believe that Miguel is serious. Let loose 2 pit bulls in Foothills Preserve? To scare and chase wildlife?"

∆ not all pitbulls fit the stereotypical image that some folks have of a violent attack dog. a lot has to do with how they were raised.

[Portion removed.]


Please Don't
Registered user
College Terrace
on Jan 26, 2021 at 4:37 pm
Please Don't, College Terrace
Registered user
on Jan 26, 2021 at 4:37 pm

"You have a nice backyard, I'm coming in."


Name hidden
Downtown North

Registered user
on Jan 27, 2021 at 12:00 am
Name hidden, Downtown North

Registered user
on Jan 27, 2021 at 12:00 am

Due to repeated violations of our Terms of Use, comments from this poster are automatically removed. Why?


theAlex
Registered user
South of Midtown
on Jan 27, 2021 at 8:23 am
theAlex, South of Midtown
Registered user
on Jan 27, 2021 at 8:23 am

This whole thing has been a disaster for PaloAltans. Not only is the park totally unusable now, but the traffic on Page Mill Road is absolutely unacceptable.

The whole character of the area has been changed for the worse. As if there weren't enough parks in the Bay Area for people to enjoy, so they had to ruin OUR park.

This will be counterproductive to those that want Palo Alto to increase its housing supply. This is an example of what happens when we cow tow to politically correct, unthinking, immature, irresponsible, entitled millennials.

Income inequality, housing inequality, etc... are NATIONAL problems, not local ones. Vote Republicans out of office!


Rhodoreae
Registered user
Ventura
on Jan 27, 2021 at 8:35 am
Rhodoreae, Ventura
Registered user
on Jan 27, 2021 at 8:35 am

I am happy for this decision and have hope for a more inclusive future for our community.

I wish that all who want to keep others away read this very important report, "BLACK AND BROWN PALO ALTO, HISTORY AND CURRENT EXPERIENCE" Web Link

And if you still believe in excluding those who don't live in PA from visiting our parks, then be sure you never visit a park in another community where you didn't pay the full cost of maintaining that park.

Let's open our hearts and take action to be better in 2021.


Hinrich
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Jan 27, 2021 at 8:55 am
Hinrich, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Jan 27, 2021 at 8:55 am

@theAlex - while I agree with most of your post, 'vote Republicans out of office' seems in error. This is a one party-rule state from the city council to the governor's office - Democrats. People in PA vote pretty much as a mono-culture and pretty much always for Democrats. Whatever problems CA has managing its various crises are entirely owned by the proud political machine of all the current office holders - Democrats. Not Republicans. Palo Altans are generous and giving but I'm sure most did not want the Preserve to be lost to the tyranny of social zealots. But it most definitely was not Republicans.


theAlex
Registered user
South of Midtown
on Jan 27, 2021 at 9:21 am
theAlex, South of Midtown
Registered user
on Jan 27, 2021 at 9:21 am

@Hinrich- At the state level, the Democrats are reacting to the disastrous national problems that have been worsening under Republicans since at least Reagan.

State Democrats are scrambling with band-aid fixes to systemic problems that are caused by the Republican machine. These fixes are just that: clumsy and ultimately damaging, stopgap measures.

We can all see with great clarity now how immoral, corrupt and evil the Republican Party is. It is time that we hold them responsible. This is our chance!


iSez
Registered user
Palo Alto High School
on Jan 27, 2021 at 11:14 pm
iSez, Palo Alto High School
Registered user
on Jan 27, 2021 at 11:14 pm

The liberals at it again, attempting to make life fair and equal, which will never occur. Foothills Park will no longer be peaceful and safe. Do we Palo Altans still have to pay for the upkeep of the park? Why should we have to pay #1 for entrance to the park, and then again through our taxes?


Dick D.
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Jan 28, 2021 at 4:30 pm
Dick D., Crescent Park
Registered user
on Jan 28, 2021 at 4:30 pm

Some how in all these comments do I see a reference to Foothills NATURE PRESERVE . . . it's not a conventional park. Do we have picnic facilities at the bay's shore – no, they're nature preserves. Perhaps if we give more PR to the existence of pumas and bob cats and rattlers, we could keep the numbers of visitors smaller, "naturally".

I have noted that 'The land for Foothills "Park" was sold to the City of Palo Alto by Dr. Russel Lee, founder of the Palo Alto Medical Clinic, and his wife Dorothy in 1/58, on the condition that it be preserved as open space.' Somehow our current perspective seems to have lost the Lee's intent in their gift.


Leslie York
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Jan 29, 2021 at 5:52 pm
Leslie York, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Jan 29, 2021 at 5:52 pm

How did this morph from a civil lawsuit to a permanent injunction?

Now Palo Alto taxpayers are on the hook for the upkeep of the park/nature preserve but they have no say as to who may enter, thanks to a judge in San Jose who is playing emperor. It sounds like a rotten deal to me.

By all accounts the entitled something-for-nothing freeloaders have overrun the park with automobile traffic, trampling the vegetation and leaving litter and dog poop in their wake. Consider that residents of East Palo Alto, Menlo Park, Woodside, Portola Valley, etc. are free to come and go, yet they pay their taxes to San Mateo county and thus contribute NOTHING to the upkeep of the park. Freeloaders indeed.

They could charge a per-car fee which, under the terms of the injunction, everyone would have to pay — residents and non-residents alike. That means Palo Alto residents would be paying twice to enter the park — once at the gate and again through taxes. That assumes the park hasn't deteriorated so badly that residents still want to go there.

Not to be alarmist, but suppose a major incident took place there, such as a shooting or a major fire. Of course the City has to be insured against such things, and who pays for that insurance? Why the Palo Alto taxpayer, of course!

Nice going, freeloaders.


Curious Parent
Registered user
Community Center
on Jan 29, 2021 at 8:07 pm
Curious Parent, Community Center
Registered user
on Jan 29, 2021 at 8:07 pm

@Leslie York wrote:
>>Now Palo Alto taxpayers are on the hook for the upkeep of the park/nature
>>preserve but they have no say as to who may enter, thanks to a judge in
>>San Jose who is playing emperor. It sounds like a rotten deal to me.

The result of the lawsuit turned Foothills Park from a billion dollar Palo Alto asset into a net liability for the city.

Regardless of how you feel about the end result of the lawsuit, it's time for Palo Alto to "donate" the park to Los Altos Hills, the Peninsula Open Space Trust, or the California State Park system to get this liability and cost off the hands of Palo Alto residents.


Leslie York
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Jan 29, 2021 at 8:55 pm
Leslie York, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Jan 29, 2021 at 8:55 pm

What happened to the "like" buttons?

We can feel better now because "equality" has been served.

We need to get the park off the backs of Palo Alto taxpayers. Palo Alto taxpayers pay for the park even if they never go there. Charge a per-car entry fee for upkeep and get it off the tax rolls. If there's an "incident" there, it won't be CPA's problem.

Taxpayers of Santa Clara AND San Mateo counties need to chip in if they're going to use it. Heck, we already do that with Caltrain.

The park is worth a lot so Palo Alto should get something for it; don't just give away an asset like that.


JB
Registered user
Evergreen Park
on Jan 30, 2021 at 12:01 am
JB, Evergreen Park
Registered user
on Jan 30, 2021 at 12:01 am

Hello. At the last City of Palo Alto Parks and Recreation Commission meeting this week, they formally changed the name of Foothills Park to Foothills Nature Preserve.

This Monday, February 1 the Palo Alto City Council will discuss daily park entrance fees and possible yearly park entrance fees. This was listed at their last meeting as an emergency ordinance to address the recent overcrowding in the park. You can see the discussion about Foothills Nature Preserve around 5:20 to 5:25 PM (according to the schedule listed below). You can sign in to the Zoom meeting and comment about the proposals during the session. Here is the information about the February 1 city council meeting. This is a good chance to make your voices heard while they discuss park entrance fees. The Zoom phone number and meeting ID are listed in the link below. Good luck!

Web Link


YP
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Jan 30, 2021 at 4:57 pm
YP, Crescent Park
Registered user
on Jan 30, 2021 at 4:57 pm

where did the "like"buttons go?? Is PA Online fearful that the comments won't show support with their liberal/woke/virtue signaling journalists and editorial staff??

Scary stuff going on, no not talking about our ex-President. I'm talking about the left's attempt to suppress free speech.


JB
Registered user
Evergreen Park
on Jan 30, 2021 at 6:33 pm
JB, Evergreen Park
Registered user
on Jan 30, 2021 at 6:33 pm

YP, I received an email about a week ago, detailing changes to the online forum. They will no longer post likes since they find it distracting and possibly too influential, since apparently some people have learned how to post many likes to their comments. They also have a word limit (maybe 200 words, I can't remember right now, but I'll look it up if you would like me to). No person can post 2 comments in a row unless they are just correcting something in their previous post. Maybe I received this email since I subscribe to the Palo Alto Weekly. Hope this helps.


Douglas Moran
Registered user
Barron Park
on Jan 30, 2021 at 11:47 pm
Douglas Moran, Barron Park
Registered user
on Jan 30, 2021 at 11:47 pm

@Leslie York: "How did this morph from a civil lawsuit to a permanent injunction?"

One of the plaintiffs' demands was that the City join them in asking for this injunction.
I mentioned my concerns in my 2020-11-02 blog (Web Link) and repeated them in my 2020-12-09 blog (Web Link). I am not aware of any debate on this.
Since both parties were requesting the injunction, I don't know whether the judge gave it any thought.


R. Cavendish
Registered user
another community
on Jan 31, 2021 at 7:18 am
R. Cavendish, another community
Registered user
on Jan 31, 2021 at 7:18 am

the Foothills Park debacle is merely a sign of the times.

perceived wrongdoings of the past are now being addressed and resolved in the name of 'cancel culture'.

ending discrimination (aka racism) and economic inequality, maintaining open and available access to the American Dream (via immigration), and the final erasure of the darker periods in American history are the essential targets of a new and improved American culture.

and all of this will involve altering our past perceptions and certain practices whether it's changing sports team monickers and trademark branding imagery, removing controversial statues and artwork from the past + the sharing of all municipal recreational areas regardless of one's background or residency.

it is now 'open season' on the past.



Leslie York
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Jan 31, 2021 at 4:01 pm
Leslie York, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Jan 31, 2021 at 4:01 pm

Where does it end? If the ACLU and NAACP "demanded" that the City sign the deed for the park over to them, I have a feeling the City would have caved to that, too, if it were in the name of "equality".

"Since both parties were requesting the injunction"

Why on Earth would CPA request this injunction?

They're even more spineless than I thought!


Resident
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Jan 31, 2021 at 7:56 pm
Resident, Crescent Park
Registered user
on Jan 31, 2021 at 7:56 pm

@Douglas Moran, and others:

“Permanent” in permanent injunction is a legal term-of-art. Importantly, a “permanent” injunction is not forever in time.

A better term for permeant injunction might be "final injunction”: A permanent injunction may be issued by a court when a court case is resolved/over. This contrasts with a preliminary injunction or a temporary injunction, either of which a court may issue during a case but before the case is resolved/over.

In federal district court, relief from a permanent injunction is available under Rule 60, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Rule 60 includes a catch-all subsection (b)(6) for relief for “any other reason that justifies relief.” Rule 60(b)(6) has no time limit under extraordinary circumstances.

Here, there are grounds for relief. Indeed, at least one is extraordinary. Namely, the court allowed the present city counsel to tie the hands of future city counsels and voters. This violates a principle of constitutional law holding that one legislature may not bind the authority of its successors (legislative entrenchment). This principle is axiomatic to democracy. Indeed, this case is beyond extraordinary because there was no briefing, nor hearings, nor judgement on the merits of the complaint.


Resident
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Jan 31, 2021 at 8:06 pm
Resident, Crescent Park
Registered user
on Jan 31, 2021 at 8:06 pm

Typo in my comment above: "counsel" should instead be "council" (the elected legislative body of PA).


Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
Registered user
Adobe-Meadow
on Feb 1, 2021 at 9:25 am
Resident 1-Adobe Meadows, Adobe-Meadow
Registered user
on Feb 1, 2021 at 9:25 am

Read these comments from end to end and then look at what actually resulted from opening the preserve. It is called a Cluster-F##k in literary terms regarding too many cooks in the governmental kitchen. I am starting to view these calamities as the end result of the Boomers vs Generation X vs Millennials vs Generation Z. All are interpreting the world social activity is their own terms with no actual reference to actual history. The context of the world is driven by the activities since their birth and personal activity. And for the younger what they derive from social media.

Add to that the changing of the names of schools for the past history of the world of which they have had no involvement. In this case so many wrong turns, so many avoidance of actual end results which were totally predictable. And yet city officials just went along for the ride.

City government has turned into a social exercise vs the management of a city based on common sense, good planning, and financial realities. I attribute that to the prior PACC and hope that the current PACC can manage the herd better. We do not have a world war to direct our energy so it is spinning now out of control.


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