2016 Ballot Endorsements
Election Day is Nov. 8th and Livable Berkeley has made a limited number of endorsements for the Berkeley Ballot. Although the consensus of the board was to take positions on only these measures, Livable Berkeley recognizes that there are many other important items on the ballot. Livable Berkeley encourages voters to vote all the way up and down the ticket.
YES on Measure T1 – $100 Million Infrastructure Bond
Livable Berkeley is pleased by the progress the City is making on projects like the street repaving funded by Measure M; however, there is still immense work to be done to improve the condition of Berkeley’s streets, parks, and other infrastructure. Measure T1 would provide $100 million in bond funds to help meet these essential infrastructure needs. We also appreciate the City’s commitment to having an open and transparent processes for the allocation of funds from Measure T1—as was the case for Measure M. Berkeley’s infrastructure is in critical need of maintenance and repair; Livable Berkeley heartily endorses YES on Measure T1.
YES on A1 – Alameda Co. Affordable Housing Bond
Livable Berkeley enthusiastically supports Measure A1, the Alameda County Affordable Housing Bond. This measure would provide $580 million in funds to support more affordable rental and ownership housing, as well supportive housing and emergency shelter for the homeless. The City of Berkeley stands to directly receive over $15 million in funds from this bond, and the City would also have access to additional pools of funds. Management of funds from A1 will be led by a county-level Independent Citizens' Oversight Committee and will be subject to annual audit and reporting requirements. Livable Berkeley hopes that Berkeley voters will support this desperately needed funding for affordable housing in Berkeley and across Alameda County. Livable Berkeley says vote YES on A1.
Yes on RR - $3.5 Billion Bond for BART Repairs
Livable Berkeley wholeheartedly supports Measure RR to keep BART safe and reliable. BART is a critical component of our regional transportation infrastructure, transporting hundreds of thousands of people per day. We applaud BART’s renewed focus on maintaining and strengthening the core system. A better BART means less crowding, less car traffic, and a more sustainable and resilient regional transportation system. Livable Berkeley urges Berkeley voters to vote YES on Measure RR!
NEUTRAL on Measures DD and U1 – Business License Taxes
Livable Berkeley strongly supports preserving and creating affordable housing, as well as the generation of additional revenue to support these goals. However, given the complex advantages and disadvantages of Measures DD and U1, we are hesitant to offer a positive or negative endorsement of either measure. We worry that the breadth of Measure DD or the specificity of Measure U1 could have unintended consequences that would only be fixable through subsequent citywide votes.
Livable Berkeley is also concerned by the possibility—despite stated requirements to the contrary—that these tax increases could still covertly be passed along to renters. Livable Berkeley would prefer funding approaches (such as a bond or property tax) that reflect a more broadly shared responsibility to support affordable housing. Finally, we are troubled by the tendency of both of these measures to distract from the severe housing shortage that underlies the current crisis. As long as Berkeley and the Bay Area continue to have a fundamental imbalance between jobs and housing, housing will remain scarce and expensive. For all of these reasons, Livable Berkeley has decided to remain NEUTRAL on both Measure DD and Measure U1.