Local Elections: Contests for City Offices Headed Into Final Stretch

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With just four days left before Election Day 2002, members of Berkeley's "moderate camp" are doing all they can to prepare for the big day, scrambling to gather up those last few votes.

Incumbent Mayor Shirley Dean said she has been extremely busy both on campus and off.

Her campaign put her on Sproul Plaza at UC Berkeley for three hours yesterday, "passing out literature and Tootsie Rolls for trick-or-treat," Dean said.

"I have gotten a really positive response from students (on Sproul Plaza)," she added. "Students get so much stuff shoved at them that they are sort of reluctant to take things, but we have passed out a ton of information on the campus."

UC Berkeley sophomore Micki Weinberg, vying for the Berkeley City Council District 7 seat, said he and his campaign have been using grassroots tactics.

"I have been shaking a lot of hands," he said. "My goal is to meet as many students as I can."

Running for election in District 8, Gordon Wozniak said he has been sticking to the campaign classics of phone-banking and neighborhood canvassing.

"We have been precinct-walking every day for the past five months," he said. "It will be the same this weekend."

Dean said she will be partaking in the "Neighborhood Whistle Tour" over the weekend, involving extensive neighborhood touring.

Dean and her entourage have 28 stops scheduled for the Berkeley-wide tour. Each house will host the group for snacks and a speech by the mayor.

She will be traveling in a hybrid gas-electric car and blowing a "little train whistle," the tour's namesake, throughout Berkeley this weekend.

The grand finale will be a free gospel concert and buffet dinner Sunday, Dean said.

"It's going to be really fun," Dean said. "It will be different."

Dean's campaign raised more than $175,000 this year and had spent nearly $100,000 as of Oct. 19.

The remaining $75,000 has gone to pay for two staff members and mailings to Berkeley residents, Dean said.

The Weinberg campaign spent $3,800 as of Oct. 19 out of $8,700 raised to date.

The design and printing of campaign window signs and literature will consume much of the remaining $4,900, Weinberg said.

"The biggest incentive is to get a student elected to the City Council in a district where the majority are students," he said. "There is no better incentive than self-representation."

Wozniak, up against three others for the City Council seat, said it is likely that no candidate will receive 45 percent of the vote, forcing a run-off.

"It would be a pain, but if it happens, we'll have to deal with it," Wozniak said. "I am not in favor of elections that go on forever."


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