UPDATE (11/26/12): Alameda County Measure B1 just missed the required two-thirds vote to pass, getting 66.53% of the vote and falling about 700 votes short.
Everybody can exhale now… the 2012 election is (mostly) over. Here are the results of the four local ballot measures that we endorsed:
Alameda County Measure B1: Too close to call
What’s an election day without a little drama? We have a nail-biter in Alameda County. Greenbelt Alliance urged people to vote yes on Measure B1. B1 would double the existing transportation sales tax in Alameda County, extend it in perpetuity, and raise $7.8 billion over 30 years for roads, public transit, bike and pedestrian improvements, and transit-oriented development.
With all precincts reporting, Measure B1 garnered 65.5% of the vote, just short of the two-thirds majority needed to pass. However, there are many ballots yet to be counted including mail-in and absentee ballots. Election officials say that the uncounted ballots could amount to as much as a quarter of the total votes, which means it’s too soon to call. We will keep you posted.
Marin County Measure A: Win for open space
Measure A, a sales tax increase that will provide $10 million per year for ten years to pay for park, open space, and agricultural land programs was embraced by Marin voters. Needing a two-thirds majority to pass, the measure won handily with 74% of the vote.
These funds will be used to keep city and county parks in good repair. They will also support farm programs, allowing ranchers to sell development rights. This will lower their property tax burden and increase the economic viability of their farms.
Nicely done, Marin!
Healdsburg Measure W: Urban growth boundary renewal
Healdsburg voters decisively approved a renewal of their city’s urban growth boundary with 76% voting yes. Urban growth boundaries are key land-use policies that help foster vibrant towns and protect neighboring open space.
Sonoma County has the distinction of being the only county in the Bay Area that has urban growth boundaries surrounding all of its towns.
San Francisco Measure C: Victory for affordable homes
San Francisco voters handily passed Measure C with 65% voting yes. Measure C will establish a Housing Trust Fund—a long-term, local, funding source for affordable housing which will generate $1.2 billion over the next 30 years. This will help create up to 30,000 permanently affordable homes for low-income San Francisco households and contribute to other housing programs.
This victory is not only a huge win for San Franciscans (and would-be San Franciscans), but also a great model that other cities and counties can—and should—emulate.