If you’ve lived and voted in Berkeley for a long time, as I have, you’ve no doubt noticed that our election campaigns typically pit one Democrat against another with nary any interest from anyone outside the East Bay. Now that has changed.
Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who fought unsuccessfully to establish a cap on the size of soda portions sold in that city, has donated $85,000 to the Yes on Measure D campaign.
Next month, voters in Berkeley and their neighbors across the Bay in San Francisco will go to the polls to determine whether their cities would be the first in the country to pass taxes on sugar- sweetened beverages. Berkeley’s “Measure D,” a 1-cent-per-ounce proposal, would mean a 50 percent cost increase for soda in the checkout lane. San Francisco’s two-cent-per-ounce “Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Tax Ordinance” could double the cost of a twelve-pack of soda. But the hit on their wallets is just one reason voters should pause before hitting the voting booth.
If an alien were to drop into Berkeley this election season, one could not fault her for presuming that the staunchest protector of our community’s collective wellbeing is the American Beverage Association, the bank and voice of Big Soda.
The two candidates in a competitive state Assembly race had the chance to woo Berkeley voters at a debate hosted by the League of Women Voters at Berkeley City College on Tuesday.
From our founding five years ago, we’ve had a consistent policy on Berkeleyside of not endorsing election candidates or taking sides on local measures. We are sticking to that principle.
As a Latino health professional, as a father of two, and as a citizen of Berkeley, I am voting Yes on Measure D.
Any traveler who walked into the Ashby BART station Wednesday night would have been barraged by “No on Measure D” ads. They were plastered on the walls across from the trains, pinned to spaces near the ticket machine, and laid out on the floor of the station.
Just like there are two sides to every coin, there are two sides to every campaign. KTVU’s story on Berkeley’s Measure D, which first aired last week, was an unsettling look at some childish and unfortunate behavior by those pushing hardest to pass the soda tax here.
This November, we will vote on Measure S, which considers whether to approve our new redistricting map. It’s very important to vote on Measure S to preserve your right to “one person, one vote.” It’s also a vote to make government work for you.
Conceived with no public input and bewildering in detail, Berkeley’s Measure R sets a new low for proposals fostering bad government.
The going was tough in the late 1990s when a passionate and diverse group of Berkeley citizen-activists wrote the first school food policy in the nation. Through conflict and compromise, they worked long and hard to get the policy passed and supported by the Board of Education.