The June election results are all finally in. We’ve broken down the outcomes and how each of the measures that passed will impact the business community.
|Measure||Chamber Position||Outcome||Effect on the Business Community|
|State Measure 68 (Beautiful Parks and Clean Water)||Support||Passed||Increased funds for parks and water system improvements using dollars raised from bond|
|RM 3 (Bay Area Traffic Relief)||Support||Passed||Increases bridge tolls to fund highway and public transit improvements to reduce traffic congestion|
|Prop A (Power Facilities Revenue Bonds)||Oppose||Passed||This measure could be used by the City to remove from the voters final authority on municipalization of San Francisco’s power facilities|
|Prop B (Appointees Running for Office)||Support||Passed||Requires that candidates seeking local or state office resign from City Commissions or Boards|
|Prop C (Tax Increase for Childcare)||Oppose||Passed||Increased commercial rent costs that may lead businesses to relocate out of San Francisco|
|Prop F (Legal Representation for Evicted Tenants)||Oppose||Passed||Decreased general funds dollars due to the program costs and increased private costs to address tenant issues|
Props D (Tax Increase for Housing and homelessness), H (Safer Policing Initiative) and I (Relocation of Sports Teams): These measures did not pass, so there is no impact on businesses
We’re excited to work with the new Mayor-elect, London Breed, who won after a nail-biting ending with a 2,500-vote margin. It is anticipated that the election results will be certified by the Board of Supervisors at its July 10 meeting and London Breed will be sworn into office on July 11. The Board will elect a new president, perhaps at their July 17 meeting. With a 6-5 progressive majority, it is likely that a progressive supervisor will be elected president and will serve until January 8.
As we look to November, the focus will be on supervisorial races and tax measures. Even-numbered seats are up in District 2 (Stefani-Pacific Heights), District 4 (vacant-Sunset), District 6 (vacant-South of Market), District 8 (Mandelman-Castro) and District 10 (vacant-Bayview). Depending on when Mayor Breed fills the District 5 vacancy, that seat may be up for a special election in November. The unexpected seat in play is District 4, where Sup. Tang announced last week that she would not seek re-election. The filing deadline was extended to June 18 and among the nine candidates are Gordon Mar, former Sup. Eric Mar’s brother and Jessica Ho, an aide to Sup. Tang.
On the tax front, there are three measures that may be on the ballot:
1) A .5% gross receipts tax surcharge for businesses grossing more than $50 million a year in the city and an increase from 1.4 to 2.9% in the payroll tax for the 20 or so “headquarter” companies. This is to raise $300 million a year for homeless housing development and services, sponsored by the Coalition on Homelessness. Signatures are being gathered to take advantage of the simple majority vote interpretation of the City of Upland case;
2) A $0.43 a square foot parcel tax on most commercial and residential property to fund a community housing program to construct or acquire 25,000 residential units, improve transit frequency and elect community councils. This “BerneicratSF” sponsored measure is being circulated for signatures; and
3) A new gross receipts tax category for transportation network companies with gross receipts in San Francisco in excess of $1 million. The rate is between .625% and .975% of local gross income and is a general fund tax.
4) A cannabis gross receipts tax, starting 2020 with rates of between 2% and 10%, phased in over two years and subject to future adjustment by the Board of Supervisors.
It is likely that items 1 and 2 will be on the ballot because the sponsors are collecting signatures, which need to be filed with the Department of Elections by July 9. San Francisco has a low signature threshold for ordinances, about 12,000 signatures of registered voters. The TNC tax was introduced at the Board of Supervisors by Sup. Peskin and the Cannabis Tax by Sup. Cohen, and if either are to go forward they will need to have their first hearings over the next few weeks.
In addition to these tax measures, there are a number of Charter amendments pending and there is still time for introduction of other ordinances.
We have already started to meet with partner organizations and political consultants to strategize for the fall election.
Keep an eye out for our Voting Guide for the upcoming November 6 election, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more public policy updates!