Tag Archives: Berkeley elections
It’s one thing to debate the issues and quite another to spread misinformation or outright lies about current ballot initiatives. Whatever your opinion of Measure A1 (and I hope everyone votes YES!), we need to hold people accountable to the truth. Sadly, Ms. Taylor of the California Native Plant Society (CNPS) in her post of Nov. 1 has resorted to continued misinformation and simple lies.
The Oakland Zoo is a community-benefit, non-profit institution that is owned by the City … Continue reading »
My support for Measure S, the Berkeley Civil Sidewalks ordinance, was not an easy decision for me. I came to it after many hours of conversation with people from all parts of the community, and a careful reading of the ordinance to see what it actually does and doesn’t do.
I have come to the conclusion that Measure S is good for Berkeley. It helps all our residents, and balances rights and responsibilities in three important areas:
Measure S is being done … Continue reading »
“Helps People. Saves Jobs.” This is the campaign slogan in favor of Measure S, the “Civil Sidewalks” ordinance on Berkeley’s ballot next Tuesday. Proponents argue that by banning sitting in commercial areas during business hours, Measure S will increase economic activity and help homeless people access social services. Like anyone who lives in Berkeley, we have grappled with issues related to homeless people on the sidewalks. A law that would help people get the services they need and help the economy sounded good to us.
Then … Continue reading »
The Oakland Zoo claims it needs more money to care for its animals and keep educational programs going. But the Oakland Tribune reports that the zoo’s operating budget is close to balanced and, when asked, zoo officials were unable to produce long-range financial projections to justify a new parcel tax. The zoo is planning a $72 million expansion further into Knowland Park, where the zoo is now located. The zoo claims that $40 million has been set aside for this … Continue reading »
On Nov. 6, Berkeley voters will decide whether to approve a controversial ordinance to ban, in most cases, sitting on sidewalks in the city’s business districts from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Measure S is Berkeley’s second attempt to pass a law limiting where and when people can sit on sidewalks. (A 1994 attempt, which included lying on the sidewalk as well, later was repealed by the City Council, after initial approval by voters. The ACLU challenged the law before it went into effect and, in 1997, “a newly elected Berkeley City Council voted to repeal the sit-and-lie ban.”)
Supporters of Measure S have poured more than $90,000 into the campaign, while those opposed have raised just under $16,000, according to campaign reports filed with the city clerk’s office. (See a breakdown of the contributions at Berkeley’s Voter’s Edge.)
The proposed ordinance counts among its proponents developers such as the Beacon Group (which owns 2150 Shattuck, the old Power Bar building) and Panoramic Interests (which sold its large property holdings to Sam Zell’s Equity Residential REIT and now is involved in infill development); opponents include the ACLU of Northern California and Patricia Wall of the Homeless Action Center.
Posts related to the measure have resulted in more than 1,000 reader comments on Berkeleyside. The proposed ban has spurred coverage in local, regional and national media outlets. … Continue reading »
In the early 1990s, Pacific Avenue merchants were suffering in Santa Cruz. We had encampments of youth sitting on our sidewalks in front of businesses and in our public spaces, often with pit bulls and belongings. They engaged in unwelcoming aggressive panhandling and rowdy behavior, frequently fueled by drugs and alcohol. Many Santa Cruzans—particularly seniors and parents with children—felt uncomfortable in our Downtown, and so they stayed away, or would make their visits short, because they did not want to … Continue reading »
Earlier this month I spent several afternoons walking along Telegraph and then Shattuck Avenues because I wanted to talk one-on-one with the people, particularly the young people, who are sitting and lying on the streets panhandling. I judged that almost all of them have serious alcohol and/or drug problems and many of them are also mentally ill.
As a medical doctor specializing in addiction treatment, I know that the people on our streets are at grave risk of becoming disabled … Continue reading »
Noah Shreiber and Isaac Lomprey, both sophomores at Berkeley High School, believe too many people are stuck in a political rut and aren’t particularly open to exploring other people’s perspectives. They decided to do something about it and formed the Diverse Political Views Club at the school. Now they’ve just pulled off their first coup: organizing a student-moderated mayoral forum on campus. All six of Berkeley’s wannabe mayors have said they will attend the forum, which takes place on Monday Oct. 29 at the BHS Library, 7:00-8:00 p.m., and is open to anyone who would like to know more about their potential local leaders. We caught up with Lomprey to find out more about what drove the pair to become so politically engaged.
You’re both sophomores at BHS in the Academic Choice school. How did you get to know each other?
Noah and I first met through our moms when we were very young, but later we got to know each other at summer camp, and started really being friends after we were in the same freshman biology class.
Why did you decide to form a Diverse Political Views Club?
We formed this club because Noah and I found that too many people are stuck in their own political ideologies and don’t dare to consider other viewpoints beside their own. … Continue reading »
With the next round of election finance statements due Thursday, Berkeleyside took a look at which City Council candidates have kept their spending local for campaign materials and services.
Not surprisingly, candidates posted their largest expenses to date for the November 2012 election during the year’s second filing period, from July 1 through Sept. 30. The statements due Thursday will include donations received and expenses from Oct. 1 to Oct. 20. Statements for all the races are public and can be downloaded from the city’s website.
We focused on spending on campaign paraphernalia, literature and mailings; consultant fees; polling services; professional services; print advertising; and website-related costs. The charts and descriptions below reflect these primary categories, not the entire amount of spending in the period. (Unless otherwise noted, we did not include office expenses, donation-related fees, fundraising event costs, filing statements or campaign workers’ salaries, which, even when combined represented a small part of overall expenditures.) … Continue reading »
The campaign sign gremlins are out in full force.
Two weeks before the Nov. 6 election, many of the candidates for major Berkeley offices are reporting that their signs have been torn down, ripped up, stolen, or vandalized – and, in some cases, the destruction feels personal.
Anna Avellar, the aide to Councilwoman Susan Wengraf, woke up Sunday to find her “Tom Bates for Mayor” sign ripped into small pieces and deposited on her doorstep. What made the vandalism creepy, she said, is that her front door is about 30 steps from the sidewalk. So someone had to tear up the sign and come up the stairs in the dark to set down the pieces.
“A couple of weeks ago someone shoved dozens of “Kriss” (campaign signs for mayoral candidate Kriss Worthington) and other … flyers into my gate,” Avellar posted to her Facebook page. “Strangely enough, no one else on my lane was as lucky. Do I think I am being targeted? YES!”
Jacquelyn McCormick, Laurie Capitelli, Worthington and others have also seen their campaign signs removed or vandalized. … Continue reading »
How much will it cost to mail an absentee ballot? It depends who you ask.
Last week, a reader pointed out to Berkeleyside that the mail-in absentee ballot for the November 2012 election requires extra postage, but that the exact amount needed isn’t specified.
“I just filled out my ballot and, when I slipped it all back into the huge envelope and began to mail it, I realized the postage was not prepaid, nor did it say how much it should cost. It only says ‘Additional Postage Required’ and the envelope looks oversized and is fairly heavy for a letter. You might think it’s easy enough to go to the post office and find out, or I could weigh it and then look up the rates online. But these things are a major hassle.”
At Tuesday night’s council meeting, city officials and staff offered some insights to help voters know what to do with their absentee ballots. In Berkeley, the full package involves inserting four separate pieces into the envelope.
City Manager Christine Daniel said the vote-by-mail ballot requires $1.50 in postage, according to county Registrar of Voters Dave Macdonald. The city has posted more detailed information on its website about what voters need to know. … Continue reading »
Angel Jaramillo, a 4th grader at John Muir Elementary School, has never swum at Berkeley’s Willard pool. His family sometimes take him to the Richmond Plunge. But, he said, he hopes that by the time he’s in 7th grade he will be able to swim at Willard — and he’ll be bringing his snorkeling mask.
Jaramillo was one of many children who came to the middle school pool on Derby and Telegraph on Saturday Oct. 13 to drum up support for ballot Measures N and O which would raise the funds necessary to re-open the pool, build a new warm pool, and maintain two other city pools. Willard Pool was closed in June 2010 and filled with dirt in January 2011. Corn and other edible plants now grow out of a section of the main pool and vegetation sprouts from the diving pool. … Continue reading »
Incumbent Laurie Capitelli and challenger Sophie Hahn will face off in November for the second time in a pitched battle for Berkeley’s District 5 City Council seat, in a race that has been tinged with allegations of distortion and ill will.
In 2008, Capitelli won District 5 re-election by defeating Hahn 4,299 to 3,898. But Hahn said Wednesday she believes her past four years of service and experience will help her come out on top in the polls on Nov. 6.
“I have a strong record of getting things done,” she said. “I do believe one person can make a difference. With hard work, collaboration, and really listening to and involving the community, you get good results for the community. And I think people recognize that. I think people have been waiting for a long time for change in Berkeley.”
So far, both candidates have raised about $30,000 for their campaigns. Each had $14,000 to $15,000 left in their coffers as of the most recent filing. The amount of money raised is second only to the mayor’s race on the ballot in Berkeley. … Continue reading »