By Sue Frost–
Since the election on Nov. 8, I have seen a tremendous amount of analysis from people about how it will impact things on a national level with regards to the United States House of Representatives and the United States Senate. But on the state and local level, there were some issues that were voted on that will have major importance to us on the local level that I have seen very little coverage on — even by local papers.
For my monthly article, I want to highlight the three most impactful ones so you can know what to expect. And even though the votes are still being counted, each of these three I am going to describe below have enough votes counted for us to know with high confidence how they are going to wind up.
First is Measure A, which was a local vote in Sacramento County that would have raised the sales take by a half-cent per $1 spent everywhere in the County (including Citrus Heights), raising around $212,500,000 annually until 2063 to spend on various transportation purposes like roads, public transit, vehicle emission reduction.
Normally when local taxes are voted on, if the measure discloses exactly where the money will be spent (which was the case here) it needs to get 66% or more votes in favor in order to pass. But a quirk in the law allowed this one to only need to get above 50% in order to pass, which made it seem like a foregone conclusion that it would easily get enough votes in order to pass.
In a huge surprise, even though the “yes” campaign spent well over $2,000,000, the measure appears to have failed – which will likely put a stop in the near future to more local transportation taxes showing up on the ballot.
Second is Measure B, which was a local vote in Sacramento County to allow the County to tax cannabis. This appears to have failed to reach the 66% needed, which means we will not be having cannabis stores popping up in the unincorporated parts of the County. This will likely not be the end of the efforts to pass this, and I would expect future tax proposals like this to appear on the ballot – but at least for now the status quo will remain.
Lastly is Proposition 31, which was a statewide vote that would ban the sale of most flavored tobacco products across California. This passed overwhelmingly, which means these products will soon be banned. Sacramento County earlier this year put a ban in place in the unincorporated county, but these products could still be bought in Citrus Heights. With the ban in place, businesses in Citrus Heights will not be allowed to sell these products anymore.
Sacramento County Supervisor Sue Frost formerly served as a Citrus Heights councilwoman and currently represents District 4, which includes Citrus Heights. She can be contacted at (916) 874-5491, or SupervisorFrost@saccounty.net.
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