The Tuesday, June 7 California Presidential Primary Election is called a “primary,” but it’s functionally a general election. In most of the races where a candidate obtains a majority of the votes (50 percent plus one) he or she will win the election with no need to advance to the Nov. 8 ballot.
May 23 is the last day to register to vote. Make sure you can exercise your right at sdvote.com
Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Election Day. (To find your polling place call 1 (800) 345-VOTE or visit https://sos.ca.gov/elections/polling-place)
The last day to request a vote-by-mail ballot is May 31.
Two contenders have challenged incumbent Republican Kevin Faulconer, who obtained the seat after Bob Filner’s resignation. Ed Harris, local Lifeguard Sergeant, is running as a Democrat and former assemblywoman Lori Saldaña, as an independent.
District 1 City Council
Republican Ray Ellis and Democrat Barbara Bry are running on platforms based on their business experience. Independent Kyle Heiskala, a council representative to curent District 1 representative and City Council President Sherri Lightner, wants to bring his progressive views to the city. Democrat Louis Rodolico entered the race as an architect who supports public transit, increasing the minimum wage and building the Regents Road Bridge. Republican Bruce Lightner, husband of Sherri Lightner, entered the race late and wants to continue his wife’s legacy.
The race for City Attorney will be one of the most contested elections this year with five challengers. Four Democrats – Mara Elliot, chief deputy at the City Attorney’s office; Gil Cabrera, chairman of the San Diego Ethics Committee; San Diego Port Commissioner Rafael Castellanos and Bryan Pease, an environmental lawyer known for defending the La Jolla seals – and Republican Robert Hickey, a deputy district attorney, all highlight their experience in politics.
▪ Check out their websites: gilcabrera.com; rafaelforsandiego.com; maraelliott.com; hickeyforcityattorney.com; bryanpease.com
If you are a registered Republican, you may vote in their primary. In the Democratic race, you can vote if you are registered as a Democrat or Nonpartisan.
The Republican primary recently lost most of its contenders. Still, Donald Trump needs the 1,237 pledged delegates to reach the nomination.
In the Democratic field, Bernie Sanders intends to fight Hillary Clinton all the way.
Propositions A through G were recommended by the San Diego Charter Review Committee and were designed to update the City Charter to be consistent with other San Diego city laws, state laws, and the city’s government structure. No formal opposition to these was found on the City Clerk’s website.
• Proposition A: Redistricting
The city’s redistricting process would be updated, adding members to the redistricting commission from seven to nine, and preventing City Council members from appointing members if no experienced candidates came forward for the positions.
• Proposition B: Authorization of Bond Issues — If this proposition gets approved, a two-thirds of the City Council vote would be needed to approve revenue bonds.
• Proposition C: Property Taxes — This proposition does not authorize any new taxes. Proposition C amends the City Charter to comply with state regulation for property tax collections by the city.
• Proposition D: City Officials Salaries — Under this proposition, the salaries of city officials would be consistent with other provisions of the City Charter. It addresses who has authority to fix the salaries of officers and employees of the City of San Diego, and how and when salaries are determined.
• Proposition E: Budget Reform — This proposition amends the City Charter to change the budget approval process to comply with state and federal law.
• Proposition F: Financial Operations — A yes vote is a vote in favor of updating and clarifying the city’s processes and requirements for the management of funds.
• Proposition G: Removal of Close-Out Audit Requirements — If this propositions gets approved, the City Auditor will be allowed, but not required, to audit city officials upon their deaths, resignations or removal from office. At present, the City Auditor is compelled to audit every city official in the above circumstances.
• Proposition H: The Infrastructure Funds — This controversial proposition, unlike the prior seven, has arguments against it. Proposed by Councilmember Mark Kersey (District 5), it intends to establish a dedicated fund for infrastructure. The fund would be restricted and could only be used to fund costs, including financing costs, related to General Fund capital improvements such as streets, sidewalks and buildings, and the maintenance and repair of such improvements.
However, Scott Barnett, president of the San Diego Taxpayers Advocate; Lisa Haughey, Affiliate Hospital President for United Nurses Associations of California; and Clare Crawford, executive director of the Center on Policy Initiatives, signed an official argument against the measure. They reason that the proposition would lock away funds for infrastructure without a certain plan on how to develop them, taking those funds away from other “more urgent” needs of the city.
Leading advocates for Taxpayers wrote, “Prop. H is a very bad idea. It ties the hands of the City Council for 25 years. It could deprive the city of needed money for emergency services. It is riddled with loopholes and completely lacking in any effective oversight or transparency.”
▪ Read more about the proposition: sandiego.gov/iba/reports/infrastructure
• Proposition I: Minimum Wage — Gov. Jerry Brown signed the statewide new law that will rise minimum wage in six years (2022) to $15. But up for San Diego’s vote in June is the San Diego proposition that would place the rise at $11.50 in 2017 and link it to inflation in 2019, and would take effect earlier than the California law. Additionally, it increases the number of earned sick days for San Diego employees.
Detractors, including District 1 candidate Ray Ellis, allege that the increase will make San Diego less competitive and damage employment, especially for those with lower-skilled jobs.
Supporters, like City Councilmember Todd Gloria (District 3), argue that a higher minimum wage will help low-income families make it to the end of the month and will revitalize the economy.
• Proposition 50: Suspension of Legislators — Under this statewide proposal, California legislators would require a two-thirds vote in their respective chambers to be suspended. This proposition will amend the California Constitution.
— Voters will also find on the June 7 ballot, state Proposition 50, candidates for U.S. Senate. Complete details at voterguide.sos.ca.gov
Coming next week in the La Jolla Light, a report on the District 1 Candidates Forum held at the La Jolla Community Center on May 9.