November 7, 2012
TO: CLA MEMBERS/ SYSTEMS/ NETWORK CONTACTS
FROM: Mike Dillon, CLA Lobbyist
Christina DiCaro, CLA Lobbyist
RE: News From The Capitol – Election Results
TUESDAY’S ELECTION PRODUCES A VICTORY FOR PROP 30
Tuesday’s exciting General Election produced several major wins and upsets statewide. CLA members watched, with particular interest, the outcome of Proposition 30 – Governor Brown’s initiative which will raise the sales tax by one quarter cent for four years, and the state income tax on upper income earners ($250K or higher) for seven years. The funding generated by the tax receipts would be used to prevent almost $6 billion in “trigger cuts” to K-12 and higher education, as well as restore partial relief to the General Fund. The CLA Executive Board endorsed Proposition 30 earlier this Fall in the hopes that the new revenue could help to save public libraries from further cuts or elimination of all remaining state funding. As you have probably read, the initiative pulled ahead around 10 p.m. last night, with the final vote being larger than most observers had expected (53.9% yes to 46% no). This morning Governor Brown held a press conference saying he was pleased with the election results and that the funding would be used “prudently and judiciously.”
The big surprise of the evening was the announcement that Democrats had secured the 2/3rds control of the Assembly and Senate they had been working toward. While the Democrats were expected to gain a couple of seats in the California State Senate to secure the 27 votes needed for a supermajority, they were also able to pick up enough seats for a supermajority in the State Assembly as well. As a result of two Assembly Democrats’ seats being collapsed due to reapportionment, the Assembly Democrats’ margin was reduced from 52 to 50 seats going into Tuesday’s election. Last week Assembly Speaker John Perez said he hoped to pick up 1 to 3 seats, leaving the Democrats short of the 54 seats necessary for a supermajority. However, the preliminary election results this morning indicate the Democrats actually captured 54 seats, giving them the supermajority necessary to pass legislation that requires 2/3 a vote of the Legislature, including taxes and constitutional amendments, with no Republican votes. This morning’s Sacramento Bee quoted Speaker Perez as stating: “Let’s be very clear, this is something that nobody expected to be possible.” (Note – as of this writing there are still thousands of ballots outstanding, but some of our sources inside the Capitol have said they expect these numbers to hold firm).