Sales tax measure remains deadlockedBy Staff
Voting for San Bruno's Measure F, the only San Mateo County measure facing possible defeat in Tuesday's consolidated municipal, school and special district election, continues to be undecided with the release of updated results this afternoon.
The proposed half-cent sales tax increase was deadlocked early this morning at 1,934 votes apiece for and against. The measure requires at least one yes vote above 50 percent for passage.
As elections officials continue to count additional mail-in and provisional ballots, at 5 p.m. this afternoon the unofficial tally stood at 2,063 yes votes and 2,064 no votes, according to the San Mateo County elections office.
Measure F in San Bruno would impose an additional half-cent sales tax for the city's general fund, raising the city's sales tax to 8.75 percent, among the highest in the state, equaled by Alameda County, Pinole and Richmond in Contra Costa County, and three cities in Southern California.
The measure's supporters, including reelected San Bruno Mayor Larry Franzella, argue the sales tax increase is needed to prevent cuts in the city's essential services. They contend the monies would be used for police, fire, and emergency services; street repair and maintenance; improved library services for disabled persons and children; and senior and recreational programs.
Those opposed to the measure argue no other city in San Mateo County has a sales tax more than 8.25 percent and that an increase would unfairly burden local residents and businesses.
They also claim there is no guarantee, even though the measure requires that the city council appoint a citizens oversight committee to review the tax revenue expenditures, that the money would be used on those services.
The result is still unofficial and more results are expected by 5 p.m. Friday, according to Elections Manager David Tom. By law, elections officials have until Dec. 4 to officially certify election results, he said.
"We're shooting for Thanksgiving" for certification, Tom said today. After the election is certified, recount requests are possible, he added.
If approved, Measure F would go into effect April 1.
Copyright ©2007 Bay City News. Published 11/07/2007.