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'A man of the people' MV Mayor Matt Pear is rooted deeply in local communities
By Clyde Noel / Town Crier Staff Writer

Matt Pear believes in getting involved because it's a good thing to do. From his days at Los Altos High School, where he was an honorable mention All-American football player, to today as he serves as mayor of the city of Mountain View, Pear's involvement with people has been paramount.

Pear's family roots in the area go deep, to the time before the Mountain View-Los Altos geographical lines were drawn. Sitting behind the Los Altos History Museum is a tractor used on his grandfather's farm, along with a Myers sprayer for crops.

True to his reputation as a people person, the mayor is available for appointments in his office 1:30-5 p.m., twice a week, because, he said, people are Mountain View's greatest asset.

Mayor Matt Pear views his new
workplace, MV City Hall.
"I want to reach out to people who can't attend council meetings. I'll listen to their desires and goals," Pear said. "We have to keep the charm of the community going."

As Pear spoke, he reflected the pride he has in the city.

"We need to maintain our edge by being creative and innovative. We have an excellent business base. We have to get back to the level we had during the high-tech era," he said.

Pear knows that will be difficult because a large part of the manufacturing left the city 15 years ago - and now the software is going, because cost structures in China and India are lower.

"While their standard of living is going up, we have to fight to keep business here to maintain our standard," Pear said. "We need to find use for our intellectual capital."

The most important challenge facing the city is its fiscal stability. Out of a total of 477 cities in California, Mountain View is one of three cities with a AAA credit rating from Standard & Poor's register.

Pear wants to continue that honor by asking the councilmembers to show the cumulative effect of the bonds that affect Mountain View. During the past two years, there has been a decline in the city sales tax, hotel tax and development fee revenues; the budget has to be balanced, according to Pear.

The council is busy with the adoption of the permanent Historic Preservation Ordinance next month. The council will decide on a process for determining which buildings in Mountain View should be on the city's register.

Pear sees a need to encourage housing in an environmentally sensitive manner when it comes to density. Incentives are necessary to encourage housing development, and the council must make that determination.

Other projects under way include the new senior center. A temporary facility was dedicated recently.

Pear mentioned other projects such as the new Graham Reservoir; the Miramar Project, a new downtown parking facility; and a review of the new master water plan.

Mountain View is unique in that the resident population is slightly more than 70,000, but the daytime population grows to more than 100,000.

"Most important, I want to see the character of Mountain View continue," Pear said. "If it doesn't, our quality of life will be gone."

Pear graduated from Los Altos High School in 1977 and received a bachelor's degree in industrial engineering in 1981 from Stanford University. He has a master's degree in business from the University of California at Berkeley.

I am grateful to the author for granting permission to post this article on my website.                      
Copyright 2004 - 2005 Matt Pear. All rights reserved.