News

Interrupted Lives, Louisiana Couple Starts Anew After 50 Years By SARAH CORE Special to the Planet

Friday December 16, 2005

CHALMETTE, La. — Huey Borne walked across his dirt-covered driveway in Chalmette, La., a curious round-shaped box in his arms. He held out the container to his wife, Margarite, who wrinkled her nose in disgust. -more-


City Council Approves Ashby BART Application By RICHARD BRENNEMAN

Friday December 16, 2005

Budget Changes, Insurance Hikes Also OK’d -more-


City Planner Issues Scathing Reply to UC’s Development Documents By RICHARD BRENNEMAN

Friday December 16, 2005

If UC Berkeley was looking for city residents and officials to praise their massive development plans for the Memorial Stadium area, then they might be disappointed by the response. -more-


Youth Commission Debates Giving Vote to 17-Year-Olds By YOLANDA HUANG Special to the Planet

Friday December 16, 2005

The Berkeley Youth Commission is gung-ho on civic involvement, and wants to involve all fellow students at Berkeley High. -more-


Berkeley School Board Report By YOLANDA HUANG Special to the Planet

Friday December 16, 2005

At the Dec. 14 meeting, the Berkeley School Board approved the contract for the environmental impact report for Berkeley High School south campus construction that includes the warm water pool. -more-


Planning Commissioners Tighten Yard Parking Ordinance By RICHARD BRENNEMAN

Friday December 16, 2005

Overriding the recommendation of Planning Director Dan Marks and his staff, Berkeley planning commissioners Wednesday voted to crack down on parking in rear and side yards. -more-


Zoning Board Approves Jazz Club Plans By RICHARD BRENNEMAN

Friday December 16, 2005

Without discussion, the Berkeley Zoning Adjustments Board has approved plans to open a jazz club inside the UC Theatre building. -more-


Correction

Friday December 16, 2005

An article in the Dec. 13 issue gave the wrong name for Andrea Faber, owner of Hula in Montclair Village and former owner of a clothing store in Berkeley’s Elmwood District. -more-


Police Blotter By RICHARD BRENNEMAN

Friday December 16, 2005

First, the Police Blotter offers a tip of the hat to now-Sgt. Joe Okies, who was awarded his stripes Thursday when graduated from his role as the Berkeley Police Department’s public information officer to a sergeant of the night patrol. Felons beware! -more-


Editorial Cartoon By JUSTIN DEFREITAS

Friday December 16, 2005

To view Justin DeFreitas’ latest editorial cartoon, please visit -more-


Letters to the Editor

Friday December 16, 2005

ALKO RESPONSE -more-


Column: The Pubic Eye: The Terrorists Are Coming! The Terrorists Are Coming! By Bob Burnett

Friday December 16, 2005

Imagine if Massachusetts’ residents weren’t paying attention when Paul Revere made his famous ride that chilly evening in 1775. Consider where we would be if citizens decided that his cry, “The British are coming! The British are coming!” wasn’t worth bothering about. Revere’s warning is comparable to that issued last week by the 9/11 Commission. They’re bellowing, “The terrorists are coming!” and most Americans could care less. -more-


Surprise—Europeans Approve of Immigrants, Study Says By PAOLO PONTONIERE Pacific News Service

Friday December 16, 2005

Among all Europeans, the French have the most positive view of immigration and minorities. Huge majorities of Germans and Italians would give immigrants, legal and illegal, free access to their health care systems. Americans are the most trusted foreigners in Europe. -more-


Commentary: 1610 Oregon St.: A Problem That Touches All of Us By SHIRLEY DEAN

Friday December 16, 2005

Monday, Nov. 28, was supposed to be the last day that the story of 1610 Oregon St. unfolded in small claims court. I’ve heard every word spoken in all three of the court sessions held regarding this sad story, read all of the thousands of words written in newspapers, letters and reports, and served as mayor during the time the city made an effort to solve the problem through a coordinated multi-service approach. I think this qualifies me to write this. -more-


First Person: Vigil at San Quentin By OSHA NEUMANN

Friday December 16, 2005

We wait, packed up against the gate to San Quentin Prison. We are a diverse crowd of many colors and many ages, standing bundled up against the cold, holding our candles and our signs. Off to one side are two counter demonstrators. One holds a large sign that says “Thou shalt not kill applies to Tookie Williams.” The other holds a smaller sign that says “For details read the Bible.” -more-


Commentary: Underneath the Shady Tree By WINSTON BURTON

Friday December 16, 2005

I was sitting alone in downtown Berkeley, lost in thought, when my friend Martin the mailman approached. -more-


Arts Calendar

Friday December 16, 2005

FRIDAY, DEC. 16 -more-


Berkeley Community Chorus Offers Free Sunday Show By KEN BULLOCK Special to the Planet

Friday December 16, 2005

The Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra will present a free concert featuring François Poulenc’s “Gloria” this Sunday at St. Joseph The Worker Church. -more-


Take a Stroll Through Historic Petaluma By MARTA YAMAMOTO Special to the Planet

Friday December 16, 2005

Free time in December is as rare as unsold chocolate hazelnut scones from Cheese Board. Time disappears with scheduled activities and holiday responsibilities. But wait, a dim light glows ahead—one open day. -more-


Berkeley This Week

Friday December 16, 2005

FRIDAY, DEC. 16 -more-


About the House: That 300-Year-Old House By MATT CANTOR

Staff
Friday December 16, 2005

One of my favorite comments to share with clients is that water isn’t all that damaging to wood. After all, they build boats out of it, don’t they? “Hmmm,” my client will say and make that light-bulb look. It’s so contrary to our typical thinking, but it’s true. Water facilitates wood damage but isn’t actually the perpetrator. -more-


ASK MATT

Friday December 16, 2005

Dear Matt: -more-


Garden Variety: Holiday Gift Ideas for Your Favorite Gardener By RON SULLIVAN

Friday December 16, 2005

Gardeners are the easiest people to buy gifts for because you don’t have to buy gifts for us. Creative scrounging can produce treasures with the fine patina of age: mossy brick, artfully limed pots, pre-lichened rocks, rusted machine parts: the sort of ornament a respectable garden demands as old money demands old family silver, even if it’s someone else’s family. -more-


Major Project Planned for Ashby BART West Lot By RICHARD BRENNEMAN

Tuesday December 13, 2005

A proposed major new development with at least 300 units of housing built over ground floor commercial space at the site of the Ashby BART Station’s western parking lot could spell major changes in South Berkeley. -more-


ZAB Nears Nuisance Vote On Adeline St. Liquor Store By PAULINE BARTOLONE Special to the Planet

Tuesday December 13, 2005

At a heated Zoning Adjustments Board (ZAB) meeting, residents of the Ashby neighborhood packed the second floor of Old City Hall chambers Thursday night with tales of their local liquor store. -more-


Downtown Retail Taxes Down by 10 Percent By AL WINSLOW Special to the Planet

Tuesday December 13, 2005

Sales taxes paid by downtown Berkeley retail stores fell 10 percent between June 2004 and June 2005, according to city figures. -more-


UC Moves Ahead With Stadium Area Development, Worrying City Planners By RICHARD BRENNEMAN

Tuesday December 13, 2005

Was UC Berkeley’s Thursday night public “scoping session” to help prepare an environmental review of its massive development plans at and around Memorial Stadium a meaningless gesture? -more-


Shirek Honored for a Life’s Work By RIO BAUCE Special to the Planet

Tuesday December 13, 2005

On Saturday evening, former councilmember/peace activist Maudelle Shirek was given a standing ovation for all the work she has done in her life. To a cheering, ecstatic crowd of more than a couple hundred Berkeley residents, Shirek introduced herself with a famous Mark Twain quote. -more-


Barbara Shearer, 1936-2005 By DAVID WHITMAN Special to the Planet

Tuesday December 13, 2005

Barbara Shearer, one of the Bay Area’s best-loved concert pianists and music teachers, died on Dec. 6 of natural causes, in Oakland. -more-


Debi Echlin Remembered By LYDIA GANS Special to the Planet

Tuesday December 13, 2005

Debi Echlin, founder and owner of A Great Good Place for Books, died suddenly on Nov. 25. She was 52 years old. -more-


City Council to Get Budget Update By RICHARD BRENNEMAN

Tuesday December 13, 2005

Berkeley city councilmembers will get a firsthand look at City Manager Phil Kamlarz’s proposal for the additional $1.08 million the city expects to receive in the current fiscal year’s budget. -more-


Vandalism Victim Breaks His Silence By MOE SALEH As told to JOE MARSHALL Pacific News Service

Tuesday December 13, 2005

I own New York Market in Oakland. My brother Tony was kidnapped and my store got burned down. The day before those incidents happened, my store was vandalized. -more-


Police Blotter By RICHARD BRENNEMAN

Tuesday December 13, 2005

School BB-gun attack -more-


Editorial Cartoon By JUSTIN DEFREITAS

Tuesday December 13, 2005

To view Justin DeFreitas’ latest editorial cartoon, please visit -more-


Letters to the Editor

Tuesday December 13, 2005

LOW BLOW -more-


Column: The View From Here: Reflections on the Fate of Stanley Tookie Williams By P.M. Price

Tuesday December 13, 2005

So I took a little break. I needed not to read anymore about the war in Iraq, global warming, white collar, blue collar or government fraud, spousal murders, kidnappings or everyday racism, sexism, ageism and any other isms you want to throw in there. -more-


Column: Red and Green Christmas Light Associations By Susan Parker

Tuesday December 13, 2005

All the lights are green for me when, in 1952, I am born. My daddy is short and he isn’t super rich, but my mom is smart and good lookin’. -more-


Commentary: West Berkeley’s Silent Majority Wants a Grocery Store By CHRISTINE STAPLES

Tuesday December 13, 2005

Welcome to my neighborhood. We live in the block just east of San Pablo Avenue. We describe each other’s houses based on their “S.P. Factor”—N. and her husband and 2-year-old, they’re as close as you can be to San Pablo, so they have the highest S.P. factor. They mostly deal with the hookers. L. and her husband and 2-year-old live up the block, where the issue is more the drug dealers and the midnight “donuts.” Me, I live in the middle of the block with my husband and 5-year-old; I call about domestic violence and gunshots. The east side of San Pablo is the “tony” side; one block to the west is where things really get exciting. -more-


Commentary: UC Libraries Control Public Access to Databases By RICHARD THOMPSON

Tuesday December 13, 2005

Mina Davenport asks: “How can UC libraries send letters to the public and alumni to ask for contributions? I used to pay the libraries at least $200 a year; however, I will not do so any more. It is simple: no services, no contributions. Perhaps the UC executives can contribute to the libraries out of that $871 million they paid themselves as bonuses. UC libraries should let the alumni and holders of library cards have access to the Internet via the library computers.” I think her request is reasonable. -more-


Arts: ‘Cabaret’ Is Good Old Dirty Fun By KEN BULLOCK Special to the Planet

Tuesday December 13, 2005

“Watching Shotgun’s Cabaret is like spying through the keyhole into the delirious and extravagant world of the Weimar Republic.” -more-


Arts Calendar

Tuesday December 13, 2005

TUESDAY, DEC. 13 -more-


Winter’s Visiting Birds Need Our Bugs By RON SULLIVAN Special to the Planet

Tuesday December 13, 2005

Last week Joe and I took a detour onto Fourth Street, to cruise Cody’s and a couple of dry-goods stores. We were just going to dash into the Vivarium for turtle chow, but I found a free parking space on Fifth and felt that was occasion to celebrate, and besides, the sun was out. -more-


Berkeley This Week

Tuesday December 13, 2005

TUESDAY, DEC. 13 -more-