Committee Recommends Drafting Measure Partly To Fund Health Programs
A Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors committee on Thursday recommended that the full board authorize county staff to draft a potential ballot measure to impose a half-cent sales tax increase to pay for health and human services and transportation programs, the San Jose Mercury News reports.
Supervisors on Feb. 28 will vote on whether to include the tax measure on the June 6 ballot.
Advocates for county health programs and transit projects are working on a plan that would have the county place a "general" tax on the ballot, which needs a simple majority vote to pass. A ballot measure that specifically states how proceeds from the tax would be spent would require a two-thirds majority vote.
The measure would include an informal commitment to voters to spend half of the funds generated by the tax on transportation (Witt, San Jose Mercury News, 2/3).
"The board should engage and educate residents and businesses on the depth of the problem and the complex array of issues involved" in the proposed ballot measure, a Mercury News editorial states. "Santa Clara residents must come to grips with the fact that its health care crisis is real," the editorial states, adding, "The Bush administration's actions make it clear that the long-held tradition of federal, state and county governments sharing the costs of caring for the uninsured and poor no longer holds" (San Jose Mercury News, 2/5).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.