Local Taxes

Voters Rejected 142 of 237 Local Tax and Bond Measures on March Ballot

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California voters rejected 142 of the 237 local tax and bond measures on the March 3 ballot, according to the counties’ final vote tallies.

The complete results, including descriptions of the measures and their estimated cost to taxpayers, are posted on the CalTax website.

The counties provided their official results much later this year, as the governor issued an executive order giving them three extra weeks to count ballots and certify results. While the preliminary tallies made it clear that some measures had passed, many were too close to call based on the early counts.

This is the first-time voters have rejected a majority of local tax and bond measures in at least 15 years, according to CalTax archives.

Voters rejected 77 of 121 school bonds, 35 of 54 parcel taxes and 20 of 44 sales taxes on the March ballot.

One measure of note is Alameda County’s Measure C, a 0.5 percent sales tax increase to fund early childhood education and a trauma center at a county hospital. The measure, placed on the ballot via a citizen’s initiative, was keyed by the county counsel to require a simple majority vote rather than the two-thirds vote needed for special taxes. The county certified the measure as approved even though it fell more than 2 percentage points short of the required two-thirds threshold.