Treatment of Wozniak unfair
In my opinion Dr. Wozniak is a decent person who sincerely believes in the safety of tritium. He deserves credit for having volunteered significant time over the years to the Parks Commission, and although I have always felt it was a conflict of interest to serve on a commission which investigates the violation of health and safety laws by his employers, he clearly did not deserve the shabby treatment that resulted from the City Attorney’s inconsistent legal opinions. At the March 27 City Council I stated Dr. Wozniak should be allowed to remain on the commission but be barred from participating in decisions related to LBNL, where he is employed as a nuclear scientist, but your article “City commissioner accused of chair kicking” (DP 4/2/01) makes clear to me that Dr. Wozniak must be removed from the Community Environmental Advisory Commission.
Pushing or slamming a chair at a person objecting to LBNL’s refusal to properly locate radiation monitors clearly crosses the line. Members of the public should not have to fear violence by city commissioners who disagree with their opinions. In this case a woman who wished to participate in the meeting was effectively silenced because she had to leave and go to the hospital. Polly Armstrong’s bad judgement in appointing Dr. Wozniak to a commission that investigates his own employer, which became evident when she refused to remove him despite the disruptive effect leading to walkouts for two commission meetings in a row, should now be obvious. Dr. Wozniak has shown he can not control his temper when people criticize tritium pollution. Because his presence on the commission could have a chilling effect on the right of citizens who wish to speak out against LBNL’s tritium facility he should be removed. If Armstrong lacks the common sense to do so despite this act of violence, the council should remove him, not only because of the conflict of interest, but because his actions expose the city to liability and prove that he lacks the temperament to deal appropriately with people who criticize the tritium facility.
Berkeley law enforcement ignores state law
Why is everybody so concerned about how the new state law about sleeping in public places is going to be enforced? Simple answer- enforce it like some other state laws are enforced in Berkeley — just choose to ignore it!
I’ve seen Berkeley police watch drivers driving across the double yellow line to turn around in the middle of the block to get a parking place on the other side of the street — they just ignore it. I’ve seen city employees park city owned cars in red zones while getting a cup of coffee in Peet’s — the parking enforcement and the squad car totally ignore it. When was the last time anybody looked at the head shops on Telegraph selling drug paraphernalia? Wake up, Berkeley, your city officials and police ignore what they want!