2020 Elections | KALW

2020 Elections

Scroll down to find all our election coverage. You can see 2020 Bay Area ballot measures here.

We want to report on what matters most to you. If you have a question about the elections, ask it below.

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  On this special election edition of Your Call, we're speaking with Kim Alexander, president of the nonpartisan California Voter Foundation, about how Californians will be voting during the COVID-19 pandemic. What questions do you have?

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This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

Berkeley Measure JJ would do many things, but the main one is this: it would give Berkeley’s mayor and city councilmembers a big raise. The mayor would get over $107,000 per year and councilmembers would get $67,000. That’s 75% more than they make now.

On this edition of Your Call, we’re discussing The First Angry Man, a documentary about anti-tax crusader Howard Jarvis and the history of California’s Proposition 13, which cut property taxes and funding for schools.

On this special election edition of Your Call, we’re discussing the 11th State Senate district race between incumbent state Senator Scott Wiener and Jackie Fielder. The district includes all of San Francisco, part of South San Francisco, Daly City, Broadmoor, and Colma.

 

We’ll begin by discussing Senator Wiener’s record as a state Senator and a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. He declined today's invitation. Later in the show, Jackie Fielder will tell us why she’s running and take your calls about her platform.

 

888bailbond / Flickr Creative Commons

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

Berkeley was an early adopter of citizen oversight of its police force. It established a Police Review Commission in 1973, well before Oakland and San Francisco.

But after nearly fifty years, proponents of Measure II say the commission is outdated, lacks power, and lags behind other progressive reforms found around the Bay Area.

Is the gig economy good for workers...or are they being exploited by it? We hear from both sides of the debate over Proposition 22, which would classify drivers for companies like Uber, Lyft and Postmates as independent contractors.

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This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

Alameda County Measure X is a bond measure that would authorize the Alameda County Fire Department to take out a $90 million loan to repair and replace some of its outdated fire stations. 

Sharon Hahn Darlin / Flickr Creative Commons

 

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.  

Alameda County Measure W is 0.5% increase on sales tax for the next 10 years, to fund services for homeless people across Alameda County.

Eric Wayne

Oct. 2nd is the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi, and in an angry toxic world, we would do well to remember a man who fasted, intermittently, to force us to think about a better humanity.  


On this edition of Your Call, we’re getting your take on last night's chaotic presidential debate. Donald Trump interrupted Joe Biden nearly every time he spoke and changed the subject or dodged questions about actual issues, including COVID and the 206,000 people who've lost their lives.

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This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.  

Measure V seeks to renew a tax on utility bills paid by households in several of Alameda County's unincorporated areas.

Srishti Sethi / Wikimedia Commons

 

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

Santa Clara County Measure T is a $24 parcel tax designed to raise funds to protect and preserve natural open spaces in the Santa Clara Valley Open Space Authority district. This covers the eastern foothills of Santa Clara County, south of the US-101 corridor. The tax would apply to real estate in the cities of San Jose, Milpitas, Santa Clara, Campbell, Morgan Hill, and the unincorporated portions of the county. It requires a supermajority to pass and would generate almost $8 million each year for projects in those areas. 

 

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This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

San Mateo measures Y and R are related measures that regulate housing and development throughout San Mateo County. 

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Grace Won speaks with Santa Clara University Law professor Margaret Russell about the life and legacy of U.S. Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, who died on Friday at age 87. Then, we hear from both a proponent and opponent of proposition 16, which seeks to reinstate affirmative action in California. 

Flickr User Albert / Creative Commons

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

EDITOR'S NOTE: A previous version of this story contained errors that have been corrected. It incorrectly stated that "Measure RR would add a 0.125% sales tax on Caltrain fares for the next 30 years." This has been corrected to say the 0.125% increase is a general sales tax increase in three Bay Area counties, not just an increase in tax on Caltrain fares.

Jericho / Wikimedia Commons, used under CC BY 3.0 / cropped

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

San Francisco Measure L is more popularly known as the “overpaid executive tax.”

Here’s how it would work: Starting in 2022, if a San Francisco-based company’s highest-paid employee makes between 100 to 200 times the median salary of the company's local workforce, then the city would levy a point one percent fee of the company’s total revenues.

Dllu / Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 4. / cropped

 

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

Measure K would authorize San Francisco to develop and own up to 10,000 units of affordable rental housing. Its supporters call it a “green light for social housing.” That means housing for a mix of income groups, owned or financed by the government.  But Measure K is just an authorization: a separate citywide measure would need to pass in order to provide the funding. That’s Proposition I.

Jeff Troth / Flickr Creative Commons

 

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.  

Measure J is a $288 parcel tax designed to raise funds for teacher salaries and school improvements. It would apply to all taxable real estate in the city though there is an exemption for seniors over 65. The Controller’s Office says the measure could generate almost $50 million a year. 


    Do you understand what Prop 15's proposed 'split roll' is? On our next show, we will dig into this question and examine the arguments for and against Prop 15. Is it an appropriate amendment to Prop 13, as supporters claim, or a deliberate weakening of an important protection for property owners? 


  On this edition of Your Call’s Media Roundtable, we're getting an update on the devastating fires in Northern California. The fast moving wildfire in Butte and Yuba Counties have killed 10 people. Thousands have been forced to evacuate. Paradise, a town devastated by fires two years ago, is, once again, under threat.

 

 

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.  

Measure I proposes to double property tax rates for properties sold at more than $10 million. San Francisco’s Accounting Office estimates this could increase annual revenues by an average of $196 million, but that could fluctuate significantly. 

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

Measure H is called the Save our Small Businesses Initiative. This prop intends to assist small businesses in San Francisco by making it easier for them to open and operate.

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This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.  

Measure G proposes to amend San Francisco’s voter age requirement for local elections, allowing 16 and 17-year olds to vote on municipal measures. It would not affect voting eligibility for state or national ballot measures. 

KP Tripathi / Creative Commons

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

 

Local government leaders are aiming to soften COVID-19’s blow to the economy by overhauling the city’s tax structure.

BY TORBAKHOPPER / LICENSED UNDER CC BY 2.0

 

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

If passed, Measure E would allow San Francisco to make changes to the number of full-time police officers on its force.

Urban

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.  

 

EDITOR'S NOTE: Since the story was originally published, San Francisco's Office of the Controller increased the estimated annual cost of creating the Inspector General's Office from $1.4-$1.8 million up to $2-$2.5 million.

Earlier this year, George Floyd’s killing while in police custody prompted greater focus on police oversight and accountability nationwide. Here in San Francisco, Measure D aims to investigate misconduct within the Sheriff’s Department. 

City Visions: Bay Area Activists Volunteer for Out-of-State Races

Aug 27, 2020
iStock/cienpies

Beyond the Presidential ballot, thirty-three Senate races, hundreds of House seats and the control of 86 state legislative chambers hang in the balance this November. Local Bay Area activists are not leaving anything up to chance as they harness local dollars and volunteers to help turn out the vote. On Monday, we'll hear from representatives of Indivisible, Sister District and Airlift about their work. We'll also get an update on breaking news and visit with a musician bringing live music to your doorstep.

Dennis Jarvis / Creative Commons

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.  

San Francisco Measure C would allow any San Francisco resident of legal voting age — at least 18 years old — to become a member of a board, commission, and advisory body. 

FLICKR USER D COETZEE / CREATIVE COMMONS

 

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

Currently, San Francisco does not have a department solely dedicated to keeping its streets and public areas clean. Those responsibilities are currently part of the Public Works department. Measure B proposes splitting off some of public works’ responsibilities into a new department of sanitation and streets.

 

Flickr User Vitor Pamplona

This is a 2-minute summary of what’s on the ballot. Click here to listen to them all.

San Francisco Measure A is a proposal that takes on three major issues: To address homelessness, enhance parks, open spaces and recreation facilities, and improve street conditions.

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