San Francisco voters appear to have approved a ballot measure to overhaul the city’s business tax system, as well as a parcel tax to fund City College and a bond measure to renovate city parks.
About 70.6 percent of voters supported Proposition E, which will enact a gross receipts tax on a company’s revenue rather than the current payroll tax, which charges companies for hiring new employees.
San Francisco is the only city in the state that levies a payroll tax, according to city officials.
The measure, which only needed majority approval to pass, had the support of Mayor Ed Lee and all 11 members of the Board of Supervisors, as well as local business and labor leaders.
Voters also passed Propositions A and B, which both needed two-thirds approval.
Proposition A, a $79 parcel tax, will provide about $14 million to City College annually for the next eight years after about 73 percent of voters approved it, according to the unofficial results.
The school is facing major financial problems, in part because of reduced state funding and internal woes that have also threatened its accreditation.
About 72 percent of voters approved Proposition B, a $195 million bond measure for city parks in need of improvements.
City voters also approved the creation of a housing trust fund to set aside money for affordable housing programs that had lost funding when redevelopment agencies were dissolved.
Additionally, voters gave the green light to consolidating odd-year municipal elections–the city attorney and treasurer races are currently decided in separate years from other elected officials–as well as a resolution opposing the concept of corporate personhood.
The only local measure rejected by San Francisco voters was Proposition F, a proposal that could have led to the dismantling of the city’s water system in Yosemite National Park’s Hetch Hetchy Valley.
Dan McMenamin, Bay City News