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California Voters Approve Record Number of Local Tax and Bond Measures

November 10, 2016
The results of Tuesday’s election indicate a continuing confidence in local government in California and the importance of the services provided by cities, counties, special districts and schools. California considered over 650 local measures on Nov. 8 and approved a record number of local taxes and bonds. They approved over $32 billion facility bonds including $23 billion in school construction bonds and $7.2 billion in transit and other local public facility improvements. The full preliminary report is available online. It will be updated as new results become available.
Among the 224 non-school local revenue measures were 12 measures asking for a total of $7.266 billion in bonds including the $3.5 billion Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) Measure RR covering three San Francisco Bay area counties, the $1.2 billion Los Angeles homeless housing and services Measure HHH and Santa Clara County’s $950 million affordable housing Measure A.
There were 88 measures to increase or extend Transactions and Use Tax (Sales Tax) rates. Thirty of these were special (earmarked) taxes requiring two-thirds voter approval. These include 13 countywide measures for transportation improvements. There were 58 city and county majority vote general purpose tax proposals ranging from 0.25 percent to 1 percent.
There were 39 city, county and special district parcel taxes requiring two-thirds voter approval, including five street/road improvement measures, eight for parks/recreation/open space, 14 for fire /emergency medical response, four for hospitals, and four for police.
Coinciding with the statewide Proposition 64 that legalizes recreational marijuana in California, there were 63 local measures related to cannabis including 39 to impose local taxes on marijuana. There were also three measures to tax sugary beverages (in Albany, Oakland and San Francisco).

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