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November 6, 2018 — California General Election
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— Public Safety Bond —

Local

City of San Jose
Measure T - 2/3 Approval Required

To learn more about measures, follow the links for each tab in this section. For most screenreaders, you can hit Return or Enter to enter a tab and read the content within.

Election Results

Passed

197,110 votes yes (70.95%)

80,687 votes no (29.05%)

  • 100% of precincts reporting (501/501).
  • 305,222 ballots counted.

Disaster Preparedness, Public Safety, and Infrastructure Bond. To: Upgrade 911 communications, police, fire, and paramedics facilities to improve emergency and disaster response; Repair deteriorating bridges vulnerable to earthquakes; Repave streets and potholes i n the worst condition; Prevent flooding and water quality contamination; Repair critical infrastructure; Shall San José issue $650,000,000 in general obligation bonds with an average levy of 11¢ per $1,000 of assessed value, averaging $34,208,000 annually until repaid, requiring community oversight and annual audits?

Information provided by Pros/Cons — League of Women Voters of California

The Question

 

 The Question:  To: upgrade 911 communications, police, fire, and paramedics facilities to improve emergency and disaster response; repair deteriorating bridges vulnerable to earthquakes; repave streets and potholes in the worst condition; prevent flooding and water quality contamination; repair critical infrastructure; Shall San José issue $650,000,000 in general obligation bonds with an average levy of 11¢ per $1,000 of assessed value, averaging $34,208,000 annually until repaid, requiring community oversight and annual audits?

 

The Situation

Background:  The City currently has a Deferred Maintenance and Infrastructure (DMIF) backlog of $1.4 billion of unmet/deferred repairs/rebuilding of public infrastructure.  These have no identified potential source of funding after leveraging one-time funding from the 2016 City sales tax measure, projected funding from the VTA Measure B sales tax, and gas tax revenue from the state, and other federal, state, and regional funding. The largest single need is for transportation: $697 million for repairs to streets, roads, bridges, overpasses, etc.  The DMIF grows by $112 million per year.  Voters last approved general obligation bonds in 2000 (for parks) and 2002 (for library and public safety).  As of June, the City had $382.8 million in general obligation debt, 1.3% of the taxable property value.  City charter limits are 15%.

The Proposal

The Proposal:  The measure would authorize issuance of $650 million in general obligation bonds which can only be used for the costs of design and improvements and land acquisition.  The bonds are limited to the project categories above which are intended to improve emergency and disaster response, repair bridges vulnerable to earthquake damage, repave deteriorating streets and potholes, prevent flooding and water quality contamination including acquisition of open space in Coyote Valley for these purposes, and repair or replacement of critical infrastructure to reduce long-term spending on operations and maintenance.   The measure specifies that at least $300 million of the revenue would be for repaving streets and potholes in the worst condition.  To see a list of potential projects and criteria for funding see the Memorandum attachment to the 9/11/18 agenda item #18-1172, found at 

Fiscal effect

Fiscal Effects:  Principal and interest for General Obligation bonds are paid off by assessing property taxes; the projected levy would be 10.7₵ per $1,000 of assessed value, or $53.50 per $500,000 of assessed property value.  The levels fluctuate depending on rolling bond sales and assessed land values, and would end after all bonds are repaid, expected in 2056-2057.  Bond funds would be deposited in separate accounts with an annual audit and public report; the City Council would appoint a Community Oversight Committee composed of City residents.

To see a list of potential projects and criteria for funding see the Memorandum attachment to the 9/11/18 agenda item #18-1172, found at https://sanjose.legistar.com/LegislationDetail.aspx?ID=3643589&GUID=E3F4F50D-216C-47A0-B8C3-65EC09461001&Options=&Search= .

Supporters say

Supporters Say: 

-        Will make us safer by reversing decades of underinvestment in streets, bridges, and public safety facilities to make daily driving safer and improve our daily emergency response

-        Will prepare us for floods, earthquakes, and other disasters

-        Will save us money by spending on disaster prevention, upgrading emergency operations, protecting open space

-        Supporters include a unanimous City Council, Sierra Club, SPUR, League of Women Voters, and others

In support:  www.SaferSanJose.org 

Opponents say

Opponents Say:

-        Construction contractors would need to sign a Project Labor Agreement requiring them to work with unions on most infrastructure projects, preventing many local workers from building in their own community

-        Interest on bonds mean $650 million will likely cost $1.1 billion; we already pay high taxes

-        Funds should not be used to upgrade 911 communication technologies which will be obsolete in 5-6 years, while payments go on

Opponents include Silicon Valley Taxpayers Association, Associated Builders and Contractors Northern California Chapter, and Libertarian Party of SCC    

In opposition:  www.SVTaxpayers.org/2018-measure-t    

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