Almanac

News - August 31, 2011

Menlo briefs: Renu Nanda heads Ravenswood foundation

The Ravenswood Education Foundation (REF), which supports the Ravenswood City School District, has a new executive director: Renu Nanda of Menlo Park.

The district includes three schools in Menlo Park: Belle Haven and Willow Oaks elementary schools, and East Palo Alto Academy High School.

Ms. Nanda replaces outgoing executive director Charley Scandlyn, who will now serve on the foundation's board.

Ms. Nanda is an attorney with nonprofit experience that includes program management at the Low Income Investment Fund and Silicon Valley Community Foundation, according to the announcement.

She also served on the education foundation's development committee for nearly three years, as well as on its board.

Rebates on homes that are energy-efficient

San Mateo County residents who decide to lower their utility bills by upgrading the energy-efficient elements of their homes can also qualify for up to $8,000 in incentives, thanks to a collaboration between the county and Pacific Gas & Electric Corp.

The program offers basic and advanced upgrade packages, based on the number and type of modifications homeowners make. The basic set of seven improvements includes duct sealing, hot water pipe insulation, and attic insulation, and qualifies for up to $1,000 in incentives. The advanced package consists of all basic features, plus projects such as installing energy-efficient windows.

Go to tinyurl.com/3vxz3ft to learn more. According to PG&E, the program will continue until it runs out of funding, which is provided on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Council meets

The star attraction at the upcoming Menlo Park City Council meeting may be the draft downtown/El Camino Real specific plan. Carrying a 6-1 vote by the Planning Commission to recommend the plan, with modifications, the proposal enters the next round of review on Tuesday, Aug. 30.

Before tackling that behemoth, however, the council is scheduled to consider a resolution to join the Healthy Eating and Living (HEAL) Cities campaign. Organized by the League of California Cities, the initiative provides a support network for cities trying to implement policies that "improve their communities' physical activity and retail food environments." Should be an easy vote; then again, this is Menlo Park.

The regular meeting starts at 7 p.m. in council chambers at the Civic Center at 701 Laurel St. At 5 p.m., the council meets in closed session to talk to negotiators from the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees union, and at 6 p.m., staff will present an overview of the specific plan.

Go to tinyurl.com/agenda-083011 to view the agenda.

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