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[whitespace] News From Silicon Valley's Neighborhoods

Miffed Mogul
Los Gatos--If everyone had Dennis Omanoff's problems. The high-tech businessman had a fine plan to plop a 10,000-square-foot manse on 1.6 acres of Los Gatos hillside until the town's planning commission suggested he scale back. Furious and convinced the commissioners are subjective and meddlesome, Omanoff took to the streets in a campaign against the whole process, circulating a petition among other disgruntled would-be castle builders, applying to become a planning commissioner (he didn't get the job) and publicly attacking commissioner Sandra Decker as a hypocrite who slaps limits on others while ignoring them herself (he claims Decker's home is too big for its lot). According to planning files, Decker's home is legally sized. Decker will recuse herself when Omanoff returns with revised plans for an 8,000-square-foot home.

Land Rush
Cupertino--They came, they saw, they applied--some 200 people hoping to qualify for 18 affordable houses in the new Oak Valley development on beautiful Cristo Rey Drive. But it's getting harder to prove you're poor enough to deserve a below-market-rate house. The new system is for people who have lived or worked in Cupertino for at least a year and for teachers, firefighters or other underpaid public service employees. The 1,440-square-foot homes will cost from $217,500 to $272,500.

Crash Plan
Palo Alto--Pretty soon Palo Alto panhandlers will be forced to find new prime locations to solicit drivers for donations; next month the City Council votes to finalize a controversial ordinance banning solicitation on some of the city's most visible traffic medians and intersections. The new law was pushed through last week by former mayor Gary Fazzino, who insists traffic safety is the core issue. Three council members oppose the measure, noting the absence of any evidence that panhandlers cause traffic accidents.

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Web extras to the February 17-23, 2000 issue of Metro.

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