Berdahl Takes Campus Agenda to State Capitol
By Michelle Barer Moskowitz, Public Affairs
With new state legislators still moving in, Chancellor Berdahl made his first trip to Sacramento Jan. 12 to usher in the 1999 legislative session and talk about Berkeley's SAFER program (Seismic Action Plan for Facilities Enhancement and Renewal).
During the day, the chancellor met individually with six key legislators, including Senator Jack O'Connell, chair of the Budget Subcommittee on Education, and with Tim Gage, director of the Department of Finance.
Berdahl also briefed legislators and their staff on the SAFER program and the campus's urgent seismic needs. SAFER aims to seismically retrofit the 27 percent of campus space rated most vulnerable to a Hayward Fault earthquake.
This fall, FEMA awarded the campus $42 million for retrofit work, with the provision that the campus raise matching funds.
The Sacramento visit began the process of identifying legislative options for state government assistance.
The 15-hour day ended with a dinner at the home of Steve Arditti, UC's director of state governmental relations, attended by 16 key legislators, Berdahl and campus faculty and administrators. Campus representatives discussed Berkeley's legislative agenda, as well as outreach activities and efforts to boost public K-12 education -- an issue of particular interest to many legislators.
Legislators present at the dinner event included Assembly Member Fred Keeley, speaker pro tempore from the Santa Cruz area; Sen. Don Perata, serving the campus district; Assembly Member Sarah Reyes, chair of the Education Finance Subcommittee; Assembly Member Kevin Shelley, majority floor leader from the San Francisco area; and Assembly Member Dion Aroner of Berkeley.