Tag Archives: Berkeley elections

Cal campus covered with graffiti for Jesse Arreguín

Chalk tagging on the UC Berkeley campus on Monday No. 7, 2016. Photo: Courtesy UC Berkeley
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People arriving on the UC Berkeley campus Monday morning can’t fail to have noticed lots of chalk tagging scrawled on many parts of the campus with messages of support for Berkeley mayoral candidate Jesse Arreguín, as well a few mentioning Rent Board candidates. The most common message was “Vote Jesse 4 Mayor,” or variations on that wording.

Christine Shaff said she counted 70 instances of different tags — all of which were made using chalk — after she got to the the campus today.

“They were on Spieker Plaza, Lower and Upper Plaza, Sather Gate, near Dwinelle Hall, Campanile Way and Moffitt Library,” Shaff, who works in the university’s real-estate division, said, noting that the north side of campus had been spared.

Shaff reported the tagging to UC Berkeley Police and began looking into how the marking could be removed.

“We will need to use water to remove it, with power washing, which is not what we want to do,” she said, although she added the campus could use well rather than potable water. Shaff said maintenance crews couldn’t power-wash busy areas during the day so they might have to do it on overtime.
“We have opened a separate work order to track how much it’s going to cost. It’s a distressing waste of our resources.” … Continue reading »

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Berkeley kids perform flash mob dance for Hillary Clinton

Hillary Pantsuit flashmob
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Kids from Berkeley and Richmond took to the streets during Sunday Streets on Oct. 23 to perform a “Hillary Pantsuit Power” performance.

“We thought having a first women president was very important and that we should celebrate that,” said Tessa Rose-Scheeres, a student at Washington Elementary School whose mother, the Berkeley writer Julia Scheeres was among the parent organizers. Tessa helped choreograph the dance, which drew dozens of spectators at the end of Sunday Streets. The dancers were mostly from Washington and Cragmont Elementary School. … Continue reading »

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Op-ed: A response to Terry Roberts

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When responding to an opinion piece, as Terry Roberts purports to do, it is often quite useful to base your response on both on the opinions expressed in the original piece and also on actually relevant personal experience. The first makes it easier to follow your response and the second, of course, is more of a courtesy offered to logical argument. Evidently Roberts considers neither standard binding.

Isabelle Gaston and Patricia Mapps did not say that utility undergrounding … Continue reading »

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Election 2016: Who will represent North Berkeley next?

District 5, from left: Sophie Hahn, Stephen Murphy. Photos: Courtesy
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With 12-year District 5 Councilman Laurie Capitelli setting his sights on the mayor’s seat, Sophie Hahn and Stephen Murphy have gone head to head this election season to convince the community who will lead North Berkeley best.

Hahn is a former attorney and small businesswoman who was appointed to the city’s Zoning Adjustments Board more than six years ago by Berkeley Councilman Kriss Worthington. She’s fiercely analytic and is known on the board for her comprehensive feedback. It will be Hahn’s third time running for the District 5 seat, having lost to Capitelli in 2012 with about 46% of the vote, short about 700 ballots.

Murphy, also an attorney, is a family justice advocate with the Alameda County Family Justice Center, which offers help to survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. Capitelli appointed Murphy to the Planning Commission and also the Commission on the Status of Women (of which Hahn was formerly a member, though they didn’t serve at the same time).

Hahn has a higher profile in the community due to her prior council runs, and her work on the zoning board and other community efforts. Her critics, she notes, have called her obstructionist, which she believes to be a gross mischaracterization. She says she has approved more than 2,500 units of housing during her time on the zoning board.

But she has also voted against or chosen not to support projects that did not meet her standards. In April, as one example, she abstained from a vote on a 107-unit project downtown that had no public speakers in opposition because she felt it should, under the law, have one additional affordable housing unit. (The project was still approved.)

She was also one of the authors, with Councilman Jesse Arreguín, who is running for mayor, of the failed 2014 Measure R campaign, which sought to strengthen regulations around green building and labor. Its critics said it would have halted development because it would have made building in Berkeley too expensive. (Hahn disagrees.) It was rejected by a 74% vote and failed in nearly every precinct. Murphy says he ran the ground campaign to oppose that measure. … Continue reading »

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Where to watch 2016 election results in Berkeley

The first presidential debate drew 1,000 people to Addison Street to watch the jumbo screen at BAMPFA. Photo: Matt, @nosoupforgeorge from Twitter
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We know you’ll be glued to Berkeleyside’s 2016 Election live blog Tuesday night, and busy sending us your pics and videos from around town, but you may also want to attend a Berkeley watch party to see the results as they come in. Here’s a handy list. If you know of a party we missed, please add it in the comments.

Berkeleyside will live blog about local reactions and the results of all the local races starting at about 8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 8. You may also find us doing a Facebook Live broadcast. Stay tuned!  … Continue reading »

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Tune in Tuesday to the Berkeley elections live blog

Local resident Moni Law was broadcasting the event using Facebook Live. Photo: Emilie Raguso
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Tuesday night, the Berkeleyside team will be giving you the play by play about local election results, so make sure to visit us often starting at about 8 p.m.

As in past years, we will do a live blog showing all the results as they come in. Some members of our team will be updating the blog, while others will rove the city to collect local reactions.

We definitely want to hear from you throughout election night. Here’s how: (1) Post on our Facebook page. Comment on the outcomes, share photos of your election event and more. (2) Email us at tips@berkeleyside.com. (3) On Twitter, use #berkelex to alert us to your election-related posts, and follow us here.

Know of a great watch party we should visit? Let us know in the comments, or email us.

Still filling out your ballot? Don’t miss these pieces on Berkeleyside. … Continue reading »

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Berkeley 2016 election hub: What you need to know

Alameda County registrar of voters. Photo: Emilie Raguso
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Update: Tune in to Berkeleyside’s 2016 live blog tonight, Nov. 8, and see our Election Day photo gallery. Share your election news, photos and videos with us. Details are here. Looking for an election night watch party in Berkeley? Look no further

Vote-by-mail ballots are here and the Nov. 8, 2016, election is right around the corner. Berkeleyside has been covering the issues for months, and we’ve collected much of our Berkeley election coverage into one place to help readers get informed before they cast their votes. This page will be updated regularly until Election Day, so bookmark it and keep coming back.

In addition to our news coverage, a lively debate has been going on in our opinion pages. Berkeleyside welcomes submissions of op-ed articles of 500-800 words. We ask for first refusal to publish. Topics should be Berkeley-related and local authors are preferred. Please email submissions and questions to the editors.

Tune in Tuesday to the Berkeley elections live blog.

Scroll to the bottom of this page for local voter information, and visit Voter’s Edge to see your Berkeley ballot. If you think this resource is handy, please share it with your networks, through social media and email.

Candidate descriptions below, in italics, reflect the ballot order and ballot designation. All opinion pieces — regardless of author or subject — appear in a separate section near the bottom of this post. The links in the italics intros pull up past Berkeleyside coverage related to the candidates.

Click the following links to jump to the section of interest.

Now dive on in.Continue reading »

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Op-ed: We get what we deserve

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Berkeley voters overwhelmingly support reducing the influence of money in politics. We also aspire to a political system marked by civil discourse focused on real policy differences. Everyone seems unhappy with the role of money and the tone of the discourse in this campaign, both nationally and locally. So how did we get here and why do candidates feel that negativity is a necessary element of campaigns? My argument is that Berkeley voters, just like voters in the country as … Continue reading »

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Op-ed: Real progressives vote for housing

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Berkeley has a Downtown Plan. The path has not been smooth or simple, but thousands of hours, plus voter buy-in has solidly approved it.

It was a compromise – the outgrowth of hundreds of hours of public meetings that took place from 2005 to 2009 by a special Advisory Committee and the Planning Commission. This original plan, approved by City Council, was later overturned.

The 2010 ballot’s Measure R could only be advisory, but it gave Berkeley voters the opportunity … Continue reading »

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Op-ed: A solution to Berkeley’s political price tag problem

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Since 2008, I’ve had the privilege and responsibility of looking out for every Berkeley tenant and landlord while serving on the Berkeley Rent Board. Doing so has provided me a unique look at the skyrocketing cost of housing, the lack of affordable rental units, and the many other difficulties of Berkeley’s challenging housing market.

I’ve been elected three out of the four times I’ve run for office, and, while doing so, I’ve raised thousands and thousands of dollars. Even when … Continue reading »

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Op-ed: Utility undergrounding must be considered in disaster planning

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I read Patricia Mapp’s Oct. 27 and Isabelle Gaston’s Oct. 26 Opinionater articles suggesting that utility undergrounding is not an important priority when considering public safety and disaster preparedness.

I totally disagree.

I have first-hand experience when it comes to utility undergrounding, emergency preparedness and public safety. I am a former public works director in Oakland, managing first-line emergency response in both the 1989 earthquake and the 1991 Oakland/Berkeley fire.

I was behind the fire lines in Oakland … Continue reading »

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Op-ed: Why I’m supporting Cheryl Davila for City Council, District 2

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Walking around District two, I can’t help but notice the purple Cheryl Davila signs displayed in windows and poking out of front gardens all over the neighborhoods of West Berkeley. I’m thrilled that Cheryl has answered the call from the district for new leadership, and I’m proud to support her campaign.

In 2013 I was elected chair of Berkeley’s Peace and Justice Commission. Our plate was full — we were holding public hearings to regulate drone use by police, participating in … Continue reading »

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4 take aim at open South Berkeley City Council seat

District 3 candidates: From right, Ben Bartlett, Deborah Matthews, Al Murray and Mark Coplan. Photo: Emilie Raguso
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For the first time in 12 years, South Berkeley will have a new representative on the City Council.

Four people are vying for the seat to be vacated by Max Anderson: Anderson’s pick, Ben Bartlett, is an attorney who is proud of his family’s deep heritage in Berkeley and has wracked up a long list of high-profile endorsements; real estate agent and longtime Berkeley zoning board commissioner Deborah Matthews, who believes in “direct engagement” with developers to get the best projects; recently retired Berkeley schools spokesman Mark Coplan, who pledges to bring his approach to public service to the City Council; and retired public servant Al Murray, whose focus is on government accountability but was sued this week for failing to comply with campaign reporting rules. (He says the error was due to a staffing mix-up that’s been fixed.)

Profiles of each candidate follow a brief look at campaign fundraising and endorsements to date.

Bartlett has raised the most in contributions thus far, nearly $28,000 from about 175 donors, according to the latest campaign filings. Matthews isn’t far behind, with about $24,000 from nearly 140 donors. Bartlett has vastly outspent his opponents, however, with $28,000 in expenditures compared to Matthews’ nearly $15,000. (Bartlett also listed a $10,000 loan from his wife, Yelda Bartlett, which could keep the campaign going in the final stretch.)

Coplan committed early on to sticking to a budget of less than $10,000, and he’s done that, though half of the money he’s raised came in the form of a $5,000 loan to himself. The rest, about $4,800, has come from about 40 people. Coplan describes his campaign as “zero waste,” though he’s spent about $8,000 on literature, postage and campaign materials. … Continue reading »

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