Barry’s ballot guide
June 2018

The list this time is short, which is a nice change of pace.  The titles are the official ones from the voter information guide.

A great resource is votersedge.org. Check it out. As always, I welcome your input. I reserve the right to be entirely wrong as well. Without further delay, here we go.

Prop. 68  — Bonds for Parks, Natural Resources Protection, Climate Adaptation, Water, and Flood Protection

At $4 billion, this is not a particularly large bond measure. To me, it is a list of projects that didn't fit into other programs that generally need to be done. All are longer term projects where bond funding is appropriate. Sure, it would be great to just pay cash, but with interest rates as low as they are, bonds are cheap.

Recommendation – YES

Prop. 69 - Requires New Transportation Revenues Be Used for Transportation Purposes

When the legislature raised the gas tax last year, the money was restricted to transportation. The legislature is not legally required to continue that restriction, so they put it on the ballot to make it a permanent requirement. The argument against it is that they shouldn't have raised the gas tax anyway, which is totally irrelevant.

Recommendation – YES

Prop. 70 - Requires Legislative Supermajority Vote for US of Cap and Trade Reserve Fund

Okay, this is the oddball item of the ballot. As part of a deal on the cap and trade program, the governor and legislative leaders agreed to require a 2/3 vote to spend the money (not to collect but just spend) from the program and hold up certain parts of the program. While it is not obvious, the restriction only takes place for one year. How goofy is that? They made a deal with oil companies and certain other businesses, but we don't have to go along with it.

Recommendation – NO

Prop. 71 - Sets Effective Date for Ballot Measures to Take Effect

As it is now, a proposition takes effect when it is approved. So is that election day? When the result of the election is clear? This proposition clarifies that a measure takes effect five days after the Secretary of State certifies the election. That makes complete sense, because that certification is when everything else on the ballot is official. There is no organized opposition to doing this.

Recommendation – YES

Prop. 72 - Permits Legislature to Exclude New Rain-Capture System from Property Tax Reassessment

Here's a measure it's amazing we even have to vote on, but the state constitution requires this kind of change be approved by the voters. I don't know what rainwater capture systems cost for a property, but I can't imagine it's enough to really matter from a property tax perspective. Yes, it's something we want to encourage for water conservation and storm water pollution prevention. If eliminating the property tax on these systems is enough to encourage people to do it, then great. There is no organized opposition to this measure.

Recommendation – Yes

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Last modified: 12/28/2017