California Residents Approve Ballot Measure To Fund Mental Health Services
California voters on Tuesday approved Proposition 63, a measure on the statewide ballot that beginning in January will increase the state personal income tax by 1% on residents with annual incomes that exceed $1 million to pay for mental health services, the Los Angeles Times reports (Rau, Los Angeles Times, 11/3). With all precincts reporting, 53.4% of state residents approved the measure and 46.6% opposed it (Secretary of State Web site).
Proposition 63 could raise about $750 million annually for mental health services (Mendel, San Diego Union-Tribune, 11/3).
The measure's supporters said the state has "neglected mental health needs," resulting in "hundreds of thousands of children and adults with severe [mental health] problems" left untreated, according to the Contra Costa Times.
Proposition 63 opponents said the measure is a "short-sighted plan that would tie mental health funding to a volatile source, which could plunge sharply when the economy sours," the Contra Costa Times reports (Contra Costa Times, 11/3). Opponents included "wealthy Californians and anti-tax groups," according to the Sacramento Bee (Benson, Sacramento Bee, 11/3).
Additional information about Proposition 63 is available online.