election 2016 | KALW

election 2016

Photo by Jürgen Klemm

Back in 1898, San Francisco and Vallejo were among the first cities in the nation to exercise direct democracy, where specific policy questions are put before voters. 

ELECTION BRIEFS: Measure RR - BART bonds

Nov 4, 2016

BART opened 44 years ago, in 1972. Now, the system is wearing out. Break-downs and delays have become more common, and as our population grows, the system has become overcrowded.

Prop V is known as "the soda tax" and "the grocery tax," but on the ballot it’s “the tax on distributing sugar-sweetened beverages.” Okay, so what’s a "sugar-sweetened beverage?"

ELECTION BRIEF: Prop T - Regulating lobbying

Nov 4, 2016

Prop T would set restrictions on lobbyists making financial contributions to elected officials.

Prop Q is about clarifying the city’s policy on homeless tent encampments. Right now, tents and other make-shift shelters often violate a few rules, like sit/lie or public nuisance ordinances and other rules against blocking sidewalks. Prop Q would make them specifically illegal.

Prop P is one of several super technical housing policy measures on the San Francisco ballot. It would change the way the city picks developers to build affordable housing on public land.

Sarah Tan

In a fourth grade class at Buena Vista Horace Mann in the Mission district, the school’s ten-year-olds are learning Common Core math. They’re practicing multiplying double-digit numbers. But it’s not in the way you’d think, because they’re learning it entirely in Spanish. This year, California voters will be able to decide if programs like this can be started elsewhere, with the passage of Proposition 58.

Every Thursday through Election Day, Rose Aguilar will host a special second hour of Your Call at 11am focused on local and state elections, the voting system, and the democratic process in California

In most Bay Area grocery stores, you can’t get free plastic bags anymore. San Francisco, all of Alameda County, and many cities in Marin and Contra Costa County have all banned bags. To find a grocery store giving out plastic bags for free, I had to drive to a Lucky in San Ramon.

Jeremy Dalmas

It’s election season. So of course, I’m at the bar El Rio in San Francisco doing what everyone loves to do over a beer -- chat about municipal bonds. I’m asking people:  Do you know what a bond is?

Proposition 54 is about making California’s legislative process more transparent.

Right now, when state lawmakers craft new legislation, they spend days or even weeks ironing out the details of a bill. And yet sometimes, right before the vote, drastic last minute changes get pushed through that make the bill very different from how it started. 

Measure RR: BART asks voters to fund a major rebuild

Nov 1, 2016
Eli Wirtschafter

 

Supporters of Measure RR like to say that BART is as old as Pong – the classic arcade game involving two rectangles playing tennis with a square.

“In 1972, Atari’s Pong was the state-of-the-art video game,” says BART director Robert Raburn. Nowadays, “you don't find an Atari Pong machine anywhere on the street.”

Do you think voting should only be the right of citizens? Prop N would give non-citizen families the right to vote in certain elections — San Francisco school board elections — as long as they have a kid in the public schools.

Prop G is about police accountability in San Francisco. Recently, the U.S. Department of Justice issued a report that said the San Francisco Police Department is biased against African-Americans and that officers lacked accountability.

Who should be responsible for maintaining the trees on San Francisco’s streets? That is the question Proposition E brings before voters.

ELECTION BRIEFS: SF Prop B - Tax dollars to CCSF

Oct 29, 2016

Proposition B would provide tax dollars to support City College of San Francisco until 2031.

It's no secret that the community college district has been through a lot recently: First a loss of major state funding, then the threat of losing its accreditation.  Enrollment dropped from 100,000 to 60,000 and staff salaries fell way below other districts.

ELECTION BRIEFS: SF Prop A - School bonds

Oct 29, 2016

Since 2003, San Francisco has approved almost 700 million dollars worth of bonds to pay for school improvements. Proposition A would issue bonds worth another 750 million dollars. Where would that money go?

Hannah Kingsley-Ma

 

Park Elementary School in Hayward is a cheerful place. The halls are dotted with murals of tiny green handprints and scribbled-on schoolwork, and the principal makes her rounds through the halls helping kids tie their shoes.

Prop 64 is all about pot. Specifically, legalizing it and taxing it. Right now, here in California, marijuana is only legal for medical use, though possession of an ounce or less is just an infraction — basically, like a speeding ticket.

Both supporters and opponents of capital punishment agree that California’s death penalty has major issues.

About one in five public school students in California is an English Language Learner. So, is it outdated to still believe that public schools should teach in English?

ELECTION BRIEFS: Prop 57 - Criminal sentencing

Oct 26, 2016

Proposition 57 is all about how people get in and out of California’s prisons. It can be broken down into two parts.

Prop 55 has to do with income tax. Specifically, income tax for people who make a lot of money. Four years ago we passed a tax rate increase for people making more than 250,000 dollars a year. That extra money — about 7 billion dollars — has gone to education and health care. The increase is set to expire in 2018--but not if a majority of Californians vote yes on Prop 55.

Under CC license from Flickr user Katheirne Hitt, resized and recropped

 

Medical marijuana has been legal in California since the late 90’s, but this year, California voters will decide whether the drug will be legalized for recreational use.

ELECTION BRIEFS: Prop 52 - Private hospitals funding Medi-Cal

Oct 26, 2016


 

Proposition 52 has to do with how California funds Medi-Cal. Medi-Cal is the state’s version of Medicaid, the low income health care program. In order for California to get federal Medicaid funding, it has to put up matching dollars.

ELECTION BRIEFS: Prop 51 - Bonds for schools

Oct 26, 2016

If Proposition 51 passes, the state would issue nine billion dollars in bonds for school construction — most of it going to K-12 schools and community colleges. The rest will be spent on charter schools and technical programs. The money could be used for anything, from building new schools to rooting out asbestos.

UNDER WIKIMEDIA COMMONS LICENSE

 

If you’ve moved to California recently, you might not realize its one of 30 states with the death penalty—because, these days, no one’s being executed. This November, voters will decide if they want to speed up the death penalty appeals process...or get rid of the death penalty altogether. 

Daniel Mendoza is starting classes at U.C. Davis as a junior and sociology major this fall. But just a few years ago, he was looking at life in prison for a long list of charges—including murder. How Daniel got from there to U.C. Davis is connected to California's Proposition 57. 

On October 17, 2016, the Ruth Asawa School of the Arts hosted a forum for candidates for San Francisco’s Board of Education, moderated by San Francisco Chronicle education reporter Jill Tucker.  

ELECTION BRIEFS: Prop 65 & 67 - Grocery bags

Oct 21, 2016


Proposition 65 is about reusable bags. Namely, the paper bags and thick plastic bags that grocery stores and other stores sell to you and me. It would direct the profits from selling those bags to a new Environmental Protection and Enhancement Fund. So when you buy one of those bags, some of your money will go to wildlife conservation, drought mitigation, and beach clean-up.

 

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