Katz's Victory Would Benefit Both Students and Residents

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The next District 8 City Council member must have the ability to represent both the district's student and well-to-do homeowner populations.

The Daily Californian strongly feels UC Berkeley graduate student Andy Katz is by far the best-and only-candidate fit for the task.

Andy Katz

The Daily Cal usually endorses candidates the day before elections. In this case, however, we feel so strongly about Katz's ability to serve District 8 that we chose to give him our endorsement well before Election Day.

Of the four candidates vying for the District 8 seat, Katz is the only one with a record of successful advocacy for affordable housing. His housing task force prompted UC Berkeley to add 340 beds to its Underhill plan. Originally, the university had forgone crucially needed student housing as part of the plan.

But Katz also recognizes the need for traffic safety measures to be taken to deal with the increased foot traffic surrounding Underhill once the plan is implemented. Such a view testifies to his thorough analysis of any city issue he advocates.

His plans extend well beyond just student housing advocacy. Katz wants to amend the city's zoning laws to improve the quality and safety of apartments across the city. He also calls for more police foot and bike patrols and better emergency response times-both of which would greatly benefit both homeowners and student residents.

Katz's three opponents-District 8 residents Gordon Wozniak, Anne Wagley and Carlos Estrada-lack the experience and practicality to serve all District 8 residents.

Wozniak has lived in District 8 for 30 years, been a UC employee for several years and has served on several city commissions.

Wozniak's stance and knowledge on several city issues, however, do not reflect his credentials.

Wozniak advocates a higher police presence in the city but admits he actually knows little about crime. By contrast, Katz has already prompted UC Berkeley to add lighting to areas of the campus that were poorly lit at night.

Wozniak's stance on affordable housing is especially disturbing. He advocates an increase in affordable housing, of course, but feels that more housing around UC Berkeley is solely the university's responsibility, not the city's.

Most of UC Berkeley's student housing exists inside the city. Under Wozniak's plans, it is doubtful the city will make any progress in providing affordable housing around the UC Berkeley campus.

Wagley, a long time human rights advocate and District 8 resident, is clearly out of touch with student and resident concerns.

Wagley has a history of advocating for historical landmark preservation in Berkeley. Her strong stance on this issue could severely slow any progress on the construction of affordable housing around UC Berkeley.

With the university's impending Tidal Wave II enrollment increase, establishing a need for additional housing for students and faculty, Wagley would be bad for students and residents living in District 8.

Estrada's ideals are too impractical to serve District 8. He wants to pressure UC to make radical systemwide policy changes and wants to extend voting rights to non citizens and lower the voting age to 16.

Estrada would spend much of his time as a City Council member chasing lofty, idealistic goals that do not practically serve District 8 residents.

Katz is clearly the only candidate with ideals practical enough to represent District 8.

While Katz has had a successful record in expanding student housing, he also supports making the city's parking availability more efficient-two issues that rarely go hand-in-hand.

Katz supports a parking system in which UC Berkeley and the city would develop a partnership to share their lots during their off-peak hours. Katz also has developed a zoning plan that would allow a 24-hour cafe in the southside area near the UC Berkeley campus. His research surrounding such a plan shows his connection to the needs of UC Berkeley students.

Aside from housing and parking, Katz has worked as a UC Berkeley student to improve the city's traffic problems. Both the Class Pass and Eco-pass systems were developed primarily by Katz's task forces.

Katz's presence on the City Council would force UC Berkeley to recognize and develop solutions to key city issues that affect students and residents. Problems that plague both Berkeley residents and students-crime, parking and traffic-would be given greater attention by the university with such a competent student City Council member.

Katz is not only the most compelling candidate to serve UC Berkeley students, but he also has the practicality and experience to serve all District 8 residents. For the improvement of District 8, it is crucial for voters to support Andy Katz.


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