Local Government

Propositions: What are They About?

TV and internet ads are beginning to show up making various claims about the state Propositions on the upcoming November 6th ballot. Unfortunately ads do not have to tell the whole truth, so voters need to be aware and educated.
Here’s a brief description of the Propositions on the ballot, and who is funding them.
Proposition 1: Veterans and Affordable Housing Bond
A yes vote authorizes the sale of $4 billion in bonds to help provide housing. $1 billion of the $4 billion would help veterans purchase homes and farms. The remaining $3 billion would be available for non-profits, developers, and local governments to finance housing.
$1.8 billion will help finance new or renovated housing that must include some units that will remain affordable for 55 years. $450 million would be available for infill housing and housing near transit as well as to provide infrastructure to support infill and housing near transit. Another $450 million would provide down payment assistance for low and moderate-income home buyers. The last $300 million would be available for farmworker housing.
The $1 billion of bonds sales used to assist veterans would be repaid by the veterans. The other $3 billion plus the $2.9 to finance the $3 billion would be repaid from the general fund in $170 million increments over 35 years according to the Legislative Analyst.
YES: Prop 1 is supported by the League of Women Voters (LWV), the Chamber of Commerce, and the League of Conservation voters. Affordable Housing Now has raised over $3.38 million in support of Proposition 1 and 2. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s non-profit “Chan Zuckerberg Advocacy” is the largest contributor at $250,000 followed by two $150,000 contributions, one from the State Building and Construction Trades Council, and the other from Essex Property Trust (who has also contributed over $2 million to oppose Prop 10 rent control).
NO: No funds have been raised to oppose Prop 1.
Proposition 2: Mental Health Services Money for Housing
A yes vote authorizes $2 billion in bond sales to finance housing for homeless people with mental illness. As much as $140 million per year of Mental Health Services Act (MHSA) funds from the 1% “millionaires’ tax” approved by voters as Prop 63 in 2004 would be used to repay the bonds.
YES: This measure is supported by the LWV, Chiefs of Police, Firefighters, social workers, and some mental health organizations. Affordable Housing Now is funding the campaign for both Proposition 1 and 2.
NO: There is no committee opposing this measure. The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) in Contra Costa County, however, is opposing it because the Legislative Analyst determined that “less funding would be available for other county mental health services.”
Proposition 3: Bonds Fund Water Supply, Quality, Conveyance, and Storage
A yes vote authorizes the sale of $8.87 billion in bonds for multiple water-related purposes. $2.495 billion would go to improving watershed land to increase the amount and quality of water available; $2.130 billion for projects that clean wastewater and run-off for drinking as well as conservation efforts; $1.440 billion to restore fish and wildlife habitat; $1.085 billion for groundwater cleanup; and $500,000 for flood protection.
NO: Both the League of Women Voters and the Sierra Club recommend voting no because this measure would shift water costs from the end users to California taxpayers; reduce state money for other critical programs like education, housing, and healthcare; and fails to provide adequate project oversight and financial accountability. Taxpayer advocates also oppose it.
YES: $3.76 million has been raised from Californians for Safe Drinking Water and a Clean and Reliable Water Supply funded by $495,000 and $400,000 each from two hunting organizations, the California Water Fowl Association and Ducks Unlimited of Tennessee, $300,000 from the California Wildlife Foundation, $275,000 from Western Growers in Irvine, and $100,000 to $215,000 contributions from five other agricultural interests and the Northern California Water Association.
Proposition 4: Children’s Hospital Bond
A yes vote authorizes $1.5 billion in bonds for capital improvements at eight non-profit private hospitals and five UC medical campuses. The estimated cost to payback the bonds from the general fund over 35 years is an additional $1.3 billion.
NO: This measure is not supported by the League of Women Voters because some of the state’s general obligation funds would go to private hospitals that the LWV says should be funded from revenue or through capital campaigns. There is no campaign raising money against this measure.
YES: $10.9 million from Yes on Children’s Hospital funded entirely by the eight hospitals named in Prop 4 to receive the funding. Each contributed $1.3 million.
Proposition 5: Property Tax
A yes vote expands the applicability of and reduces the limits on what the Legislative Analyst refers to as “Special Rules for Some Homeowners” to transfer Prop 13 benefits to a new home purchase.
NO: The LWV not only recommends voting No but is one of the signers of the ballot argument opposing this measure based on the Legislative Analysts’ conclusion that property taxes needed for schools and local governments would be reduced by $1 billion per year over time. In addition to the LWV, the former Director of the California Department of Finance opposes it. The $1.7 million in opposition to Prop 5 is funded by $1 million from the SEIU and the remainder from teachers’ unions.
YES: The signatures in support of the measure come from advocates for seniors, veterans, and people with disabilities. The initiative is supported by the Yes on 5 Committee which has raised $10 million from 2 donors, The National Association of Realtors and the California Association of Realtors.
Proposition 6: Repeals Gas Tax
A no vote keeps the SB1 gas tax and vehicle license fee increase for roads and transportation infrastructure. It was implemented in November of 2017 and local projects in Fullerton have already utilized these funds to repair roads. A vote of the electorate in June 2018 limited the SB1 tax revenue for transportation to guarantee continued funding for roads and transportation. If SB1 were repealed by Prop 6, Fullerton alone would have a loss of $2.5 million for road repair.
NO: Firefighters, the Director of California Emergency Services, the American Society of Civil Engineers, and CHP have signed the arguments opposing this measure. The LWV recommends voting No. No on Prop 6 has raised $30 million with highest donations from California Alliance for Jobs ($2.75 million), Laborers Pacific Southwest ($1.2 million), and 6 trade unions at $1 million each.
YES: The Republican candidate for governor and the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association support Prop 6. $2.3 million has been raised by Yes on Prop 6, Repeal the Gas Tax with the largest contributions of $325,000 from the Californian Republican Party, $300,000 from Kevin McCarthy for Congress, and $250,000 from John Cox for Governor. $1.7 million has been raised by Carl De Maio’s Reform California – Yes on 6 with the 2 largest donors giving $25,000 each.
Proposition 8: Dialysis
A yes vote on this measure limits the charge by dialysis providers to dialysis patients to 115% of the cost for patient care and training, education, technology and other improvement costs.
YES: $18.3 million – Californians for Kidney Dialysis Patient Protection supports Prop 8 with funding from the SEIU (a workers union).
NO: $99 million -Stop the Dangerous Dialysis Proposition, Sponsored by the California Dialysis Council. Entirely funded by dialysis providers including: $61.5 million from DaVita, $28.5 million from Fresenius Medical Care North America, $7.4 million is from US Renal Care Inc., followed by smaller contributions from other dialysis providers.
Proposition 10: Rent Control
A yes vote repeals the Costa-Hawkins Act that has severely limited rent control since 1995. The repeal would allow local municipalities to implement limits on rental rates and rent increases for apartments or single-family homes. There could be a reduction in tax revenue due to decreased rental property values according to the Legislative Analyst.
YES: Prop 10 supporters say “The rent is too high!” The LWV recommends a “Yes” vote. $13 million in support for Prop 10 comes from the Coalition for Affordable Housing with $12.4 million from AIDS Healthcare Foundation.
NO: Prop 10 supporters say it “will make our housing crisis worse.” $31 million has been raised to oppose Prop 10 by Californians for Responsible Housing which is funded by $3.3 million from Equity Residential in Chicago, $2.5 million from California Association of Realtors, $2.4 million from Essex Property Trust, $1.5 million from Avalon Bay Communities, $1.45 million from George Marcus and Affiliated Entities, and a large number of other real estate interests.
Proposition 11: Ambulance Drivers
A no vote on this measure, would entitle private sector EMTs and paramedics to meal and other breaks without being oncall, or be paid overtime if pulled into work during those times. This only effects private sector. Public sector EMTs and paramedics already have this protection.
NO: There is no opposing funding.
YES: $21.9 million – Californians for Emergency Preparedness & Safety is funded by American Medical Response, the nations largest provider of private emergency services.
Proposition 12: Farm Animals
A yes vote creates a new set of standards for the amount of room farm animals should be provided. The Legislative analyst anticipates a “several million dollars” reduction in sales tax revenue annually and a $10 million per year cost to regulate if this measure passes.
YES: $6.1 million: Prevent Cruelty California. Top contributions are $3 million from Open Philanthropy Action Fund, $2 million from the Humane Society, and $1.6 from Deborah Stone, a Baltimore blogger.
NO: $556,360 – Californians Against Cruelty, Cages and Fraud states that this measure weakens the standards set by Prop 2 ten years ago. The campaign is funded entirely by the non-profit Humane Farming Action Fund from San Raphael. PETA, the Association of California Egg Farmers, and the National Pork Producers Council also oppose it but are not campaigning against it.
For further assistance, here are some groups’ recommendations on the Propositions:


Categories: Local Government