2007 City of Berkeley Annual Report

The 2007 Annual Report was delivered to more than 53,000 Berkeley residents and businesses the week of August 20, but there are several other ways to read it as well!

If you would like to print it, download either the high-resolution (PDF, 2.6 MB) or low-resolution (PDF, 2.35 MB).

En espanol (PDF, 579 KB) 

If you would like the interactive version of the report, with quick links to the programs that interest you, keep reading!

Table of Contents

Letter from Phil Kamlarz, City Manager
Living Safely in Berkeley
Playing and Growing in Berkeley
Working and Shopping in Berkeley
Conserving in Berkeley
Solving Problems in Berkeley
Upcoming in Berkeley
Wrapping it Up


Dear Residents,

Berkeley is an extraordinary place.

I’m reminded of this every time I walk down the street. Students and business people, toddlers and seniors, artists and construction workers find their way here from all over the world. Because of that, and our unique commitment to diversity, equality and discourse, Berkeley has a vibrancy all its own.

This community energy continues to accomplish great things. In the following pages, you’ll read about how we’re the nation’s most accessible city for disabled residents and visitors, and how the Student-Neighbor Task Force is working. There’s also good news about playing fields for our kids, the arts, and our neighborhoods.

You’ll also read about some of the challenges we face, including:

Public Safety: In a community our size, there is a constant need for more police officers, firefighters and paramedics. We want to make sure that no matter the size of the emergency, we have the staff to respond. The challenge is that public safety costs are growing twice as fast as sales and property taxes, and we will need a new tax to maintain and increase services.

Infrastructure: We need to do some basic work around infrastructure and public health. Berkeley has a 100-year-old storm water system. Heavy winter storms combined with high tides now put many of our neighborhoods in danger of flooding. At the same time, we have to work to keep the Bay free of pollutants.

Health: Our 2007 Health Status Report shows that while our overall health is improving, not everyone is getting healthier.

Climate Change: When 81 percent of Berkeley voters passed Measure G, we agreed on the goal: 80 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Now we need to decide how to get there.

The new fiscal year started July 1, and with it, we have some good news. After four years of cutting programs and services, we were able to restore fire station staffing levels, maintain police services, enhance recreation programs, and increase our youth employment opportunities. Our funding for social services, especially for homeless programs, increased. In addition, taxes from several large land sales will allow us to make some overdue capital improvements.

Property owners will also see their taxes go down this year. We refinanced the Measure S bonds for a savings of $6.1 million, which means that taxpayers with $400,000 homes will save $40 and $1 million homes will save $101 per year.

Although this is not a comprehensive review of everything we’ve done this year, I hope it’s a useful overview and look ahead. If you have any questions, please take a minute to email me at manager@ci.berkeley.ca.us. I look forward to hearing from you!

Sincerely,

Phil Kamlarz
City Manager

philkamlarzoffice