San Diego County Taxpayers Association Announces Positions on Six Ballot Measures, Releases 2018 Voter Guide Ahead of November Election
SAN DIEGO (September 25, 2018)—Ahead of the November general election, the San Diego County Taxpayers Association (SDCTA) has released its positions on six upcoming state and local ballot measures, and published its official 2018 voter guide on sdcta.org.
“All positions we have taken are part of our mission to provide thoughtful, data-driven perspective on policy that will impact the lives of San Diego County residents,” said Haney Hong, president and CEO of SDCTA. “The issues at stake this November will have a profound effect on the efficiency of our local governments, affordable housing in San Diego, and fire preparedness, to name a few, so we urge voters to utilize our voter guide to make an informed decision at the polls.”
SDCTA has taken positions on the following:
Proposition M: Amendment to San Diego City Charter Regarding Appointing a Public Member to the Audit Committee: SUPPORT
This measure increases the speed and efficiency of the Audit Committee member reappointment process, according to SDCTA, because it would allow faster reappointment when the City does not receive applications from two qualified additional candidates. SDCTA also recommends that this process should be removed from the Charter in the future.
Proposition J: San Diego City Charter Amendment Regarding Mandatory Disclosure of Business Interests: SUPPORT
This measure enforces an existing 1992 law requiring all city-engaged businesses to disclose the financial interests in each transaction with the city of San Diego. SDCTA believes that it will help reduce monitoring costs for taxpayers, and promotes government transparency and accountability.
Measure R: Amending Development Regulations for Beachfront Property in Del Mar: OPPOSE
While the initiative would streamline development regulations, SDCTA believes that the process would also create legal exposure for the city of Del Mar—and that from a governance standpoint, this is an issue that the City Council can clarify through normal legislative activity.
Measure SS: Valley Center Fire Protection District Local Emergency Response/Fire Protection: SUPPORT
San Diego County Fire districts should be prepared to do their job amid recent observed extreme weather patterns, but rising costs have impacted the Valley Center district’s ability to fund needed services and personnel. This measure imposes an annual parcel tax that would come at a similar cost to citizens as the recently repealed Cal Fire Prevention fee, and fund more full-time firefighter positions. Importantly, SDCTA believes that the Valley Center fire district is setting an excellent example for other public agencies by using this tax revenue to set up a 401(k)-style retirement system for its employees, rather than relying on CalPERS. This is a better use of tax dollars and lessens the pension burden on taxpayers in the region.
Bonsall Union School District’s proposed school bond measure: NEUTRAL
While Bonsall Union School District has adopted policies that would meet key provisions of SDCTA’s bond support criteria, this was not done until after the deadline SDCTA set forth.
Proposition 10: Affordable Housing Act: OPPOSE
This statewide legislation, if passed, would repeal the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act. Doing so would overturn long-standing regulations that limited cities’ abilities to enact rent control; prevented units built after February 1, 1995 from being subject to rent control; and prohibited “vacancy control,” which prevents landlords from increasing rents on vacant units to match market price.
SDCTA’s opposition to rent control is based on academic findings that demonstrate how the practice actually has adverse effects on the affordable housing market, ultimately harming the very low-income population it aims to serve. More information on SDCTA’s rent control positions can be found here.
“Our goal is to provide nonpartisan analysis that allows every citizen to understand exactly how their vote influences the way their state and local government spends their tax dollars,” said Hong. “SDCTA’s dedicated research staff have parsed each initiative on the ballot for its impact on voters’ lives—and their wallets. Information is power, and we are proud to do our part in helping San Diego County voters study up for this November.”
View SDCTA’s full November 2018 voter guide here.