On Your Ballot: County Measure FD & County Measure R

On Your Ballot: County Measure FD & County Measure R

COUNTY MEASURE FD

Fire Protection District-Emergency Response & Infrastructure Special Parcel Tax

Requires a 2/3s vote to pass

What would this measure do?

Measure FD  authorizes Los Angeles County to impose a parcel tax to provide funds for the L.A. County Fire Department to hire and train additional firefighters and paramedics and maintain, update, and replace emergency response infrastructure, including firefighter safety equipment, vehicles and aircraft, facilities, life-saving rescue tools, and emergency communications technology, to improve  fire protection and emergency medical response. Only the 56 cities that contract for county fire protection and all unincorporated areas will be taxed and will vote on this tax.

This parcel tax will be at the rate of $0.06 per square foot (SF) of all structural improvements on all taxable properties not exempt from property tax. The tax will increase by 2% per year. This amounts to $60 for a 1000 SF building. (The first year inflation increase would be $1.20 for a total of $61.20) There is no term limit or sunset on this tax.

PRO: 

1.  L.A. County needs more skilled firefighters to fight increasingly severe and frequent wildfires that sweep into residential areas.

2.  9-1-1 calls for paramedics have increased more than 50% in 10 years, but paramedics have only increased by 5%, stretching their capacity to respond to emergencies.

3.  LACFD’s communications system is badly out of date and incompatible with wireless networks.

CON: 

1.  L.A. County is awash in increased property tax dollars, but the Supervisors prioritize pet projects instead of vital firefighting.

2.  This tax does not exempt all seniors, nor does it exempt all renters.

3.  This tax has no sunset; it goes on forever.

Read more about County Measure FD on Voter’s Edge nonpartisan election information website.

COUNTY MEASURE R

Los Angeles County Sheriff Civilian Oversight Commission Ordinance

Citizen’s Initiative –requires a majority vote

What would this measure do?

Measure R requires that the Los Angeles County Sheriff Civilian Oversight Commission research and draft a Comprehensive Public Safety Reinvestment Plan and Feasibility Study to reduce the county’s jail population and reinvest savings from reducing the jail population to provide prevention and mental health treatment. The plan should create mental health alternative custody programs that reduce recidivism, as well as expand youth centers and programs to prevent youth from getting into crime.

The measure also would empower the Commission to conduct its own investigations of the Sheriff’s operations by granting the power to subpoena documents and witnesses, to administer oaths and to produce written reports of investigations.

PRO:

1.  Studies have shown that youth violence prevention, mental health treatment, and housing programs that address chronic homelessness work better than incarceration to prevent crime.

2. Recidivism of youth and adults is higher if persons have been jailed rather than released to supportive treatment.

3. NO formal arguments in support were submitted.

Editor’s Note: This measure is endorsed by the Los Angeles Times.

CON:

1.  There are not enough treatment programs to serve the number of addicts and mentally ill.

2.  There is already an Office of Inspector General which can conduct investigation into the Sheriff’s Department.

3.  NO formal arguments in opposition were submitted.

Read more about County Measure R on Voter’s Edge nonpartisan election information website.

Photo: EU Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid / Creative Commons

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