Five candidates have taken on the challenge of beating the Mayor Bates machine. One citizen to sign up early is Jacquelyn McCormick, a person with experience evaluating Council actions. She has a continuing website called "Berkeley Council Watch". one of the few sources of reporting on local politics. She has attended every Council meeting for the last two years.
She is also a leader in writing the "Facts" initiative and gathering the signatures needed to put it on the November ballot. "Facts" would require the Council to report to the public truth about the City's liabilities and update the sum every two years.
Mayor Tom Bates has been too involved with mega-developers, they have imposed grossly enlarged projects that make no attempt to harmonize with existing neighbors. Under his regime the University now has the potential of converting the central business district into a campus take over.He has been rude to citizens at Public Hearing before the City Council.
Last election the city adopted Rank Choice Voting (RCV) now the voter choses a first, second and third choice of candidates for Mayor, according to preference. In rounds of counting, called "Passes" the first choice candidate with the fewest votes is eliminated and their second choice vote is passed to those selected by the voter. Encouraging people to continue to the end of a very long and complex ballot will be very important. Some say the Ranked Choice Voting favors the incumbent, I urge everyone concerned about the livability of Berkeley to vote for Jacquelyn McCormick as their number choice for a new Mayor.