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April 24, 2012 > Where do the candidates for Hayward City Council stand?

Where do the candidates for Hayward City Council stand?

Tri-City Voice Newspaper has given the nine candidates, who are running for four seats on Hayward City Council in the June 5, 2012 Municipal Election, the opportunity to state their positions on four local issues. One question will be published per week with respondents' answers to enable readers/voters to compare and contrast. This week we publish the fourth and final question in the series.

TCV: Given the City of Hayward and Hayward Unified School District's mutual desire to foster a positive learning environment for students, how useful would Measure G, a $58 parcel tax-measure (estimated $2M annual revenue), be to achieving that goal?

Peter Bufete: As an advocate for the Hayward school system, I am in favor of Measure G: "Quality Local Schools and Academic Excellence Measure." I want to see our schools receive the estimated $2M a year which should go directly towards "math, reading, writing and hands-on science classes/labs, enhancing library services, technology and college preparation programs; providing programs for all students to meet State academic standards and attracting and retaining qualified teachers." I want to remind our community to make sure that the appointed oversight committee and that the HUSD school board keep open books for the public regarding the usage of those funds.

Ralph Farias: It's not. It's going to create another divide within the community - those who are for the tax and those who are AGAINST it. Instead of asking the public for money, stop rewarding all these over-paid execs at the school district with these crazy bonuses! Let's put a moratorium on raises until we have enough surplus! We can only ask for so much; once we milk the cow dry, what next? We need to become more fiscal about our budget! We need to learn how to spend more with less. Stop all this government squandering!

Barbara Halliday: While $2M represents only about one percent of the total HUSD budget, it will be secure funding that cannot by taken by the state. It will therefore give the District some protection against anticipated state funding cuts and will help save jobs and keep teachers in their classrooms. Clearly more help is needed to maintain quality and improve results. I support continuing and expanding the City's after-school Homework Support Center and attracting new volunteers to this and other programs supporting our youth to make sure each child gets the help needed to do well in school.

Greg Jones: It's a start. However, if $7M annually is needed just to maintain the status quo, then let's give the community a visionary option, subject to voter-approval. Big issues need bold solutions. Voters are unlikely to approve another revenue-enhancing measure in the near future, so the City, School District and Hayward Area Recreation and Park District (HARD) should collaborate on a broader Youth Initiative that nurtures the whole child. The classroom must provide a solid foundation, including "the three Rs," complemented by a broader initiative of collaborative, youth programming that creates context for classroom-learning and builds upon that foundation.

Al Mendall: It will help a little in the short-term but we need to be thinking long-term about how to revitalize our schools. As a community, we should be talking together to develop that long-term plan. I have ideas, as do many others. Let's discuss and refine them together and then get to work implementing them. I hope to help lead that community-wide discussion, as a parent of young children and if elected to Council.

Francisco Zermeno: I will vote for this parcel tax measure because I value education and prioritize it. Unfortunately, both our federal and our state governments have proven to emphasize other things, not the education of our youth. We are in dire need of funds to fix our schools, which is why I worked on the School Bond a couple of years ago. I am disappointed that our Federal Government bailed out banks and the auto industry but has neglected both our schools and our cities. This parcel tax measure would help offset the lack of state and federal funding and it would begin the improvement of the education of our youth.

[Candidates Shahla Azimi, Olden Henson and Fahim A. Khan did not respond.]

Candidates for Hayward City Council (four seats)
Listed according to California Secretary of State's Randomized Alphabet Drawing

Shahla Azimi
Francisco Zermeno
Fahim A. Khan
Greg Jones
Barbara Halliday
Olden Henson
Al Mendall
Peter Bufete
Ralph Farias Jr.

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