Democratic Party Support for Propositions 1D, 1E Falls Short
At the California Democratic Party convention Sunday, delegates declined to support three of the six measures on the May 19 special election ballot, including initiatives that would let the state shift funds from special accounts for mental health services and early childhood health care and education programs, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
Fifty-two percent of delegates voted to back Proposition 1D, and 50.1% of delegates voted to endorse Proposition 1E.
Support from 60% of delegates is needed for the party to endorse a ballot measure.Â The vote means that the party will take a neutral stance on the initiatives (Wildermuth, San Francisco Chronicle, 4/27).
Proposition 1D would shift funds from First 5, which was created in 1998 when voters approved Proposition 10 to increase the state tobacco tax to fund early childhood health care and education programs.
In fiscal year 2009-2010, the measure would shift as much as $608 million in Proposition 10 revenue to the state general fund for other state health and human services programs for children who are not older than age five.Â The measure would shift as much as $268 million to the state general fund in each of the next four fiscal years.
The measure also would eliminate funds for statewide media campaigns and permit First 5 to allocate funding only for direct health and human services.
Proposition 1E would shift $226.7 million from mental health care programs that Proposition 63 funds to the existing Early Periodic Screening, Diagnosis and Treatment Program for low-income children for two years.Â
In 2004, voters approved Proposition 63, which increased the state income tax on high-income Californians to fund mental health services (California Healthline, 4/22).
Opponents of the measures argued that the initiatives would take away services from people who need them (San Francisco Chronicle, 4/27).
Proposition 1A also failed to clear the 60% threshold to win the Democratic Party's endorsement.Â The measure would cap state spending and create a rainy-day fund (Hecht, Sacramento Bee, 4/27).
The Los Angeles Times reports that divisions within the Republican and Democratic parties on the ballot measures could complicate things for voters, ultimately leading to the failure of the measures (Finnegan, Los Angeles Times, 4/27).
The Chronicle recommends that Californians vote in favor of all of the measures (San Francisco Chronicle, 4/27).
The Times is urging voters to back all of the measures except Proposition 1B, which would guarantee funding for public schools (Los Angeles Times, 4/26).
- Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times: The measures on the May 19 ballot are "billed as keys to ending the state's dysfunctional budget process," but they are "mostly shams and frauds," Hiltzik writes in his Times column.Â He adds that propositions 1D and 1E "will be mostly irrelevant" to the budget process" (Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, 4/27).
- Sen. Fran Pavley (D-Agoura Hills), Ventura County Star: Pavley urges her constituents to vote for all of the measures on the ballot, writing, "Propositions 1A-1F would get us through this economic down time and give the Legislature the opportunity to develop a pathway to fiscal stability" (Pavley, Ventura County Star, 4/26).