This came over the transom today from Anaheim Mayor Pro Tem Kris Murray:
MURRAY PROPOSES “ANAHEIM TAXPAYER PROTECTION ACT”
ANAHEIM—Anaheim Council Member Kris Murray has proposed an amendment to the city’s charter requiring a two-thirds vote of the City Council to put any new tax measures on the ballot. This proposed charter amendment is scheduled for council action Tuesday, March 3.
Once approved by the city council, the “Anaheim Taxpayer Protection Act” would go before city voters at the next general election scheduled for November 2016.
“During the last election in Anaheim, we heard discussions among declared candidates about new utility taxes, sales taxes, and gate taxes,” said Murray. “That’s why I’m proposing the Anaheim Taxpayer Protection Act to defend our city taxpayers against these reckless proposals.”
“Instead of raising taxes, Anaheim has been committed to growing our economy through reduced regulations and encouraging private investment, which leads to increased city revenues,” Murray said. “However, future city councils may believe in raising taxes as the solution, which is why the Anaheim Taxpayer Protection Act is so vital.”
Tax increases are not hypothetical in Orange County or across the state of California. Many cities have recently passed or proposed local tax increases to fund and maintain services.
“Anaheim has a long history of private sector investment to fund city services – the Convention Center, our two stadiums and the resort area were all public-private partnerships that today generate more than 50 percent of our city’s general fund revenue. We need to ensure that economic development continues to be the method of generating city revenue long term. This charter amendment puts those taxpayer protections in place.”
State law already requires general law cities to meet the two-thirds requirement to place general tax measures on the ballot, but the state’s more than 100 charter cities have been exempted by state courts. This means that a simple majority of the city council may initiate a general tax increase. California’s largest cities (Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco as well as Anaheim and 11 Orange County cities) are classified as charter cities. The state’s constitution requires new taxes or tax increases by cities to be approved by voters and this charter amendment will ensure that any tax measure in the City of Anaheim first receives a two-thirds vote of the City Council.
More information on the proposed amendment, including the text of the amendment, will be available at www.anaheim.net by clicking “agenda” under Council Meeting.