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    Barry's Avatar
    Founder & Moderator

    Ballot Roundups

    PD Editorial: November election recommendations

    October 4, 2020, 12:16AM

    Here are our recommendations to date for the Nov. 3 election.

    U.S. Congress, 2nd District — Jared Huffman

    Jared Huffman does a good job representing a vast district, stretching from the Golden Gate to the Oregon border. He is one of the most liberal members of the House, and he represents one of the bluest districts in the nation's bluest state.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    U.S. Congress, 5th District — Mike Thompson

    Mike Thompson has ably served Wine Country for nearly three decades, first in the state Senate and now in the U.S. House of Representatives. His moderate to progressive voting record aligns well with his North Bay district.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Senate, 3rd District — Bill Dodd

    In this unprecedented moment, the state needs experienced, solutions-oriented legislators like state Sen. Bill Dodd, D-Napa. Dodd, a former Republican, is a genuine centrist who puts results first. He has a deep reservoir of experience as a Napa County business owner and an elected official.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Assembly, 2nd District — Jim Wood
    Sacramento, says Assemblyman Jim Wood, is filled with people dedicated to maintaining the status quo. Name a problem, he says, and entrenched interests endeavor to derail practically any solution. Wood, D-Santa Rosa, speaks from experience, having tackled some of California's most intractable issues during his three terms in the Legislature: health care, housing, insurance, utilities, water.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Assembly, 4th District — Cecilia Aguiar-Curry
    Issues in this sprawling district run the gamut from student housing at Sonoma State University and UC Davis to homelessness in Napa and Woodland, from wildfire recovery in Lake County to the threat that rising sea levels will swamp Highway 37, and the future of PG&E and the Sonoma Developmental Center. Assemblywoman Cecilia Aguiar-Curry is well-versed in all of them.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Assembly, 10th District — Marc Levine
    An upstart Marc Levine unseated a well-known and heavily funded incumbent in the 2012 election. Over four Assembly terms, he has emphasized his independence while demonstrating a knack for introducing bills that make big headlines but not much impact. His experience and seasoning set him apart in this year's election.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Proposition 14 — Stem cell bonds — No
    After 16 years, the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine is well established, and its successes should allow it to secure other sources of funding, including federal funding as the Bush-era restrictions on stem cell research have been lifted
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Proposition 15 — Property taxes — No
    Proposition 15 would raise property taxes by an estimated $12.5 billion a year by taking Proposition 13 protections away from some commercial and industrial properties. The chief advocates say small businesses would be protected. That may have been their intention, but it almost certainly wouldn’t be the result.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Proposition 16 — Affirmative action — Yes
    We have a diverse society, but it isn’t colorblind or merit-based. Women, on average, are paid 80 cents for every dollar paid to men. Women of color are paid even less than white women. African Americans and Latinos are still unrepresented in the state’s universities and overrepresented among the unemployed and in California’s vast prison system.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Proposition 17 — Voting rights for parolees — Yes
    Parolees work and pay taxes and, as supporters note, a Florida study concluded that parolees whose voting rights were restored were less likely to return to prison. Everyone benefits from reducing recidivism. Felons on probation already are allowed to vote.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Proposition 18 — Voting rights for 17-year-olds — No
    More than a dozen state allow 17-year-olds to vote in primaries if they turn 18 prior to the general election. There is a logical nexus: general election candidates are nominated in the primary. Proposition 18 goes further. It also would allow 17-year-olds to vote in low-turnout special elections, which frequently are called by small school districts for bonds and parcel taxes.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Proposition 19 — Property taxes — No
    Proposition 19 would allow people to buy more expensive homes anywhere in the state, while capping their property taxes. Moreover, they could repeat the maneuver three times. That might provide lots of business for real estate agents, but it would undercut school districts and local governments, the beneficiaries of property taxes.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Proposition 20 — Prison sentences — No
    California was on the front end of a national trend in reducing sentences for drug offenses and nonviolent crimes. What’s happened to the state’s crime rate? It has declined to levels last seen in the 1960s, according to the Public Policy Institute of California. This isn’t the time to reverse course.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Proposition 21 — Rent control — No
    California voters soundly rejected rent control in the November 2018 election for a good reason: It won’t alleviate the state’s housing problems. State lawmakers voted in 2019 to cap rent increases anyway. Yet here we are again, asked to decide another rent control initiative.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Proposition 22 — App-based delivery services — Yes
    Proposition 22 would allow app-based transportation and delivery companies to continue using independent contractors — drivers who set their own work hours and determine which assignments they accept and reject.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Proposition 23 — dialysis clinics — No
    Don’t be fooled. This initiative is ostensibly about protecting kidney dialysis patients, but it’s actually a cynical attempt to punish clinic operators for resisting a union organizing campaign. Sound familiar? It should. Proposition 23 is a reprise of a 2018 initiative battle.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Proposition 24 — online privacy — No
    California’s online privacy law took effect on Jan. 1 to national acclaim, but the final regulations didn’t come out until mid-August. Many people and businesses are still trying to figure it out, yet there’s already a substantial revision on the ballot, and even online privacy advocates and experts are divided about whether it’s a step forward or a step back.
    To read The Press Democrat editorial, click here.

    Measure O — mental health sales tax — Yes

    Measure O isn’t a panacea. It won’t fix all the problems with mental health care, which has been underfunded for too long at all levels of government. It will provide revenue that can’t be diverted to other programs.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Measure U — Petaluma sales tax — No
    Right now, in the midst of a deadly pandemic, with the economy reeling, and the presidential election sucking the air out of the room, permanent taxes should wait.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Measure CC — Petaluma Valley Hospital sale — Yes
    Petaluma Valley Hospital has been leased by St. Joseph since 1997. After renewal talks collapsed, the Petaluma Health Care District tried and failed to find a new partner. NorCal Health Connect, a secular subsidiary of Providence St. Joseph, offered to buy the hospital and preserve existing services for at least 20 years.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

    Measure DD — Transportation sales tax — Yes
    Sonoma County delivered on their promise to widen Highway 101. Renewing the transportation sales tax would provide funding to fill potholes, improve local streets, upgrade bike paths and transit service and compete for state and federal funding.
    To read the Press Democrat editorial, click here

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  3. TopTop #2
    Barry's Avatar
    Founder & Moderator

    Re: Ballot Roundups

    Courage California (formerly Courage Campaign) believes that California must be a beacon of progressive, equitable, and truly representative democracy. As the 5th largest economy in the world -- and the United States' largest and most diverse state -- California is uniquely positioned to serve as a model for the country.

    We must prove that democracy in the US can still solve the thorniest problems facing our state, our nation, and the world, while also serving ALL of our people -- regardless of race, gender, or economic status. To do so, Californians must have the information and infrastructure they need to hold elected officials accountable when they are not working for the public’s benefit, instead prioritizing corporate lobbyists and campaign contributors.

    Courage California, driven by our 1.4 million members, helps our great state reach its potential by calling out institutional corruption and oppression, improving coordination and collaboration between progressive organizations, and demanding that our state and local representatives be both accountable to and reflective of the Californians they seek to serve.

    See their fairly comprehensive recommendations here

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    Barry's Avatar
    Founder & Moderator

    Re: Ballot Roundups

    Clicking the image below will take you to a PDF
    with each proposition line hotlinked to
    the campaign that supports the endorsed position.

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  7. TopTop #4
    Barry's Avatar
    Founder & Moderator

    Re: Ballot Roundups

    Proposition 14 - Stem Cell Research Institute Bond Initiative

    If this measure passes, California will borrow $5.5 billion in general obligation bonds for the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine (CIRM). It will also increase the number of members on the Independent Citizen’s Oversight Committee that governs the institute. Additionally, it caps the number of bond-funded CIRM employees to 85 and establishes new training programs for students.
    Read the Ballotpedia entry here.

    ISF Recommendation: NO RECOMMENDATION on 14.
    We were not able to determine any significant positive or negative effects of this proposition based on our mission, vision, and values.

    Proposition 15 - Tax on Commercial & Industrial Properties for Education and Local Government Funding (Split Roll)

    If this measure passes, it ends a tax loophole which allows corporations to avoid property tax increases by dividing ownership of a property, and ends corporations’ massive tax break under 1978’s Prop 13, restoring much-needed funding for public services.

    Proposition 13, passed in 1978, requires that all real properties are taxed based on their purchase price, rather than their current market value (by limiting the amount by which the county’s assessment of a property’s value can increase until the property is transferred to a new owner). Proposition would require commercial and industrial properties (except for those zoned as commercial agriculture)—but not residential—to be taxed based on their true current market value.
    Furthermore, the California Legislature implemented a tax statute that states a change in property ownership only occurs if a stakeholder owns more than 50%. This means that corporations can prevent their property taxes from going up—by splitting the purchase of a property amongst several parties in order to keep all ownership shares under 50%. Proposition 15 would also repeal this loophole.

    Proposition 15 would tax commercial properties based on current market value, closing the loophole and making sure corporations pay their fair share. 40% of this revenue would go directly to public schools, with the rest going to local governments.

    Proposition 15 is a form of “Split Roll” because it ends the tax-limiting measure for commercial and industrial properties, but does not change things for residential properties.
    Read the Ballotpedia entry here.

    [ISF Recommendation: YES on 15.
    Economic justice requires that corporations pay their fair share in taxes, and this proposition will effectively close a tax loophole and provide much-needed funding to local communities. With the devastating economic costs of the pandemic and wildfires on California’s local governments, Proposition 15 is more needed and timely than ever. Indivisible SF has supported Proposition 15’s journey to the ballot from the beginning. Our members joined in the effort to collect signatures to get this measure on the ballot (through Schools and Communities First).

    Proposition 16 - Repeal Proposition 209 Affirmative Action Amendment

    If this measure passes, it will repeal the ban on affirmative action in California. The California Constitution will be amended to repeal Proposition 209 (1996), which bans affirmative action, and states that the government and public institutions, cannot discriminate against or grant preferential treatment to persons based on race, sex, color, ethnicity or national origin, in hiring. This will allow public institutions to develop and use affirmative action programs. Proposition 16 would allow affirmative action involving race-based or sex-based preferences, in compliance with rulings on the matter from the Supreme Court.
    Read the Ballotpedia entry here.

    ISF Recommendation: YES on 16.
    Affirmative action is an important tool in fighting systemic racism and sexism. It gives opportunities to communities of color which are chronically underserved. According to research by UC Berkeley economist Zachary Bleemer, Prop 209’s ban on affirmative action has lowered educational opportunities, wages, and economic mobility for Black and Latino students. These students are left behind from the very beginning, as they are barred by income from the best schools and other important opportunities that could help them get into good colleges and well-paying jobs. Allowing public institutions to practice affirmative action in hiring and education would go a long way to breaking down these systemic barriers.
    Indivisible SF has supported Proposition 16 from the beginning. We were a proponent of ACA 5 when it was in the legislature and supported its passing.
    Find out more on why voting YES on Prop 16 is so important at Yes on 16: Opportunity for All.

    Proposition 17 - Voting Rights Restoration for Persons on Parole Amendment

    If this measure passes, California will allow people on parole for felony convictions to vote. The state constitution will be amended to allow people on parole to vote.
    Currently, people with felonies are disqualified from voting until both their prison term and their parole are completed. Proposition 17 will allow people with felonies who are on parole to vote, but those who are still in prison will still be disqualified.
    Read the Ballotpedia entry here.

    ISF Recommendation: YES on 17.
    We believe voting is a right for all American citizens. People who are on parole have re-entered their communities, and we believe they have the right to help make decisions for their community as part of a democratic process.
    Find out more about why it is important to vote YES on Proposition 17 at Yes on 17: Free the Vote.

    Proposition 18 - Primary Voting for 17-Year-Olds Amendment

    If this measure passes, the state constitution will be amended to allow 17-year-olds to vote in a primary or special election if they will be 18 for the next general election.
    Read the Ballotpedia entry here.

    ISF Recommendation: YES on 18.
    This is a logical measure that encourages young people to participate in their democracy within the year that they become of voting age. 18 states along with Washington DC already allow 17-year-olds to vote, and California should join them.

    Proposition 19 - Property Tax Transfers, Exemptions, and Revenue for Wildfire Agencies and Counties Amendment

    If this measure passes, California will allow people to transfer their tax assessment to more expensive homes, and increase the number of times people over 55 or with severe disabilities can do so. The measure will also require that inherited homes that are not principal residences be reassessed at market values. Any additional revenues will be allocated to wildfire agencies and counties.

    Currently in California, homeowners who are over 55 or with severe disabilities can transfer their property tax assessments to a different home with the same or lesser market value. This allows them to move without paying higher taxes. Prop 19 would allow these homeowners to transfer their tax assessments to more expensive homes, and increases the number of times they can do so. Additionally, the current rule on inherited properties in California is that parents or grandparents can transfer their primary residences to their children without reassessing the property taxes based on market value. Prop 19 would stipulate that the child uses the inherited property as a primary residence for this rule to apply.
    Read the Ballotpedia entry here.

    ISF Recommendation: NO on 19.
    This proposition protects existing homeowners from paying new taxes when they move, and leaves that burden on new prospective homeowners trying to move out of renting. While it does limit some tax benefits for inherited second homes, this proposition appears to be mostly a way for wealthy people to avoid paying taxes. The wildfire agencies donation of any revenue savings is nice, but it seems like a way to pander to organizations who would otherwise not support this.

    Proposition 20 - Criminal Sentencing, Parole, and DNA Collection Initiative

    If this measure passes, it will amend several criminal sentencing reforms passed to reduce incarceration for nonviolent felonies. The measure will add certain crimes to the list of felonies for which early parole is restricted, will turn certain misdemeanors (firearm theft, vehicle theft, unlawful crest card use) into felonies, and will require DNA collection for certain misdemeanors. It would also require parole review to consider such factors as marketable skills and mental conditions before deciding on parole for felons. This measure amends prison population-reducing laws AB 109, Proposition 47, and Proposition 57.
    Read the Ballotpedia entry here.

    ISF Recommendation: NO on 20.
    Prop 20 will exacerbate prison overcrowding at a time where this can be deadly for incarcerated people, guards, visitors, lawyers, and entire communities. Reducing prison populations and building restorative justice systems is crucial to the safety of our communities, especially in light of the pandemic.Turning misdemeanors into felonies deprives people of their right to vote and keeps them in jail longer.

    We are also against DNA collection as it is a humiliating, unnecessary, and dangerous invasion of privacy for already vulnerable people. ACLU NorCal has also opposed this measure.

    Proposition 21 - Local Rent Control Initiative
    If this measure passes, local governments will be allowed to enact rent control on residences that were first occupied over 15 years ago, with an exception for landlords who own no more than two homes with distinct titles or subdivided interests.
    Currently in California, rent control is prohibited on homes that were first occupied after February 1, 1995. This static date means that no new homes, now or in the future, can be rent-controlled by local governments (since they could never have been occupied in 1995.)

    Prop 21 changes the static date of 1995 to a moving 15-year window, such that only homes first occupied in the last 15 years from the given current year can be exempt from rent control. If Prop 21 were enacted today, all homes occupied before 2005 would be subject to rent control. Next year, all homes occupied before 2006 would be subject to rent control, and so forth.
    Read the Ballotpedia entry here.

    ISF Recommendation: YES on 21.
    This is a logical, incremental measure that prevents the supply of houses subject to rent control from diminishing. We would love to see stronger housing reform, but this is a good start.

    Proposition 22 - App-Based Drivers as Contractors and Labor Policies Initiative

    If this measure passes, California will define app-based transportation (such as Lyft and Uber) and delivery drivers as independent contractors, and adopt labor and wage policies specific to app-based drivers and companies.
    This measure overrides California law AB 5 (2019), under which Uber and Lyft drivers are classified as employees, not independent contractors. Uber and Lyft insist that their drivers should be classified as independent contractors. Along with Doordash, they campaigned for Prop 22 to override AB 5.

    Prop 22 will also enact new labor and wage policies that are specific to app-based companies and drivers, which provides some concessions to drivers such as requiring companies to provide some healthcare subsidies and an earnings floor.
    Unions, progressive lawmakers and activists (including Sen. Kamala Harris and Sen. Warren) have opposed Proposition 22 as it deprives drivers of the protections that regular employees receive under California law.
    Read the Ballotpedia entry here.

    ISF Recommendation: NO on 22.
    Rideshare and delivery app companies often exploit their workers by pretending to be a platform, not a driving service. Rideshare drivers are paid by their companies to provide the service the companies offer, and until AB 5 goes into effect, they are doing this without the protections regular employees enjoy. Proposition 22 was written by rideshare companies, and proposes measures that are beneficial to the companies’ bottom line at the expense of their workers. Indivisible SF supported AB 5, as a part of the Indivisible CA State Strong coalition. We believe AB 5 protects rideshare workers from exploitation, and we are against efforts to override it.

    Proposition 23 - Dialysis Clinic Requirements Initiative

    If this measure passes, California will require chronic dialysis clinics to: have an on-site physician while patients are being treated; report data on dialysis-related infections; obtain consent from the state health department before closing a clinic; and not discriminate against patients based on the source of payment for care.Opponents of the measure claim that this will force community dialysis clinics to close from increased costs.
    Read the Ballotpedia entry here.

    ISF Recommendation: YES on 23.
    Dialysis clinics should be safe for patients and regulated to make sure they stay safe. Since dialysis is necessary for patients with failed kidneys to stay alive, the clinics should not be allowed to discriminate.

    Proposition 24 - Consumer Personal Information Law and Agency Initiative

    If this measure passes, it will expand the state’s consumer data privacy laws, including provisions to allow consumers to direct businesses to not share their personal information; remove the time period in which businesses can fix violations before being penalized; and create the Privacy Protection Agency to enforce the state’s consumer data privacy laws.Proposition 24 expands the 2018 CCPA (California Consumer Privacy Act), which allows consumers to request that a business disclose what information it has gathered about them, delete the information, and prevent businesses from selling personal information to third parties.
    Read the Ballotpedia entry here.

    ISF Recommendation: NO on 24.
    At first blush, Prop 24 appears to be a logical expansion of existing consumer privacy law, and this is an important issue where existing law could do more. Misuse of personal information by online businesses is profoundly dangerous to people. Not only is it used for targeted advertising - the scandals of the past four years have shown how personal information can be sold to organizations that spread misinformation, conduct mass surveillance, and leave people vulnerable to identity theft and doxxing.

    ISF supports efforts to curb the misuse and abuse of private consumer information for profit by corporations. But this isn’t the reform we need—as opponents such as ACLU, Color of Change, and labor activist Dolores Huerta have pointed out, this bill would introduce loopholes, weaken protections, and further entrench a “pay-for-privacy” economy. And although the Electronic Frontier Foundation ended up reaching a “No Recommendation” conclusion, the EFF’s blog post about Prop 24 lists off many serious concerns. [Added Oct. 1] The League of Women Voters of California has a thorough analysis of Prop 24, and they also came to oppose the measure.

    Our own members have noted that proponents of the measure talk in vague terms about privacy issues, whereas the opponents talk about specific problems with the proposed legislation. This is a good sign of bad legislation.
    We need real protections for Californians from privacy abuses, not attempts by the corporations responsible for those abuses to subvert and weaken the protections we have now.

    Proposition 25 - Replace Cash Bail with Risk Assessments Referendum

    If this measure passes, it will uphold SB 10, legislation that replaces cash bail with risk assessments for detained people awaiting trial.

    If this measure FAILS, SB 10 will be repealed and California will be back to cash bail.
    Proposition 25 is a referendum on SB 10, a law passed in 2018 which replaces cash bail with risk assessments. Until SB 10 goes into effect, California uses a cash bail system where people who are arrested can pay a cash bond as collateral that they return for trial. SB 10 addresses the issue that impoverished people are unable to pay bail, and thus are stuck in jail for long periods of time until their trial can begin. It replaces cash bail with a risk assessment system - people who are deemed a danger to the community stay in jail, the rest are freed until it’s time for their trial.

    In response, Proposition 25 was introduced as a veto referendum by the American Bail Coalition. This organization of bail bond lenders hopes the Proposition will fail, thus repealing SB 10. Most progressives, the California Democratic Party and other organizers all support Prop 25 and want to uphold SB 10.

    The ACLU opposed SB 10 because it fails to address racial bias in the risk assessment tools used to determine whether someone has to stay in jail. However, the ACLU opposes the repeal of SB 10 via this proposition, as the bail bonds industry is not interested in equal protection or justice. Further reforms will be necessary.
    Read the Ballotpedia entry here.

    ISF Recommendation: YES on 25.
    Indivisible SF supports moving away from cash bail, as it is inequitable to those in poverty. Keeping people in jail for long periods of time because they can’t afford bail violates their rights and endangers them, especially during the pandemic.
    Voting YES on Proposition 25 upholds SB 10. SB 10 is far from a perfect law, and further reforms are necessary to achieve true equity and reform in the criminal justice system. However, we believe that repealing SB 10 wholesale will be a step back. Thus, we have determined that it is important to vote YES on Prop 25.

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    Barry's Avatar
    Founder & Moderator

    Re: Ballot Roundups

    Who We Are

    The Council for a Democratic Sonoma County (CDSC) was founded in 2020 to address a changing political landscape. The CDSC is a nonpartisan and unaffiliated political research body whose mission is to engage critically with local politics in the interest of the working class, unsheltered, marginalized, and otherwise excluded from the conventional political system.

    See their Voting Guide Here

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    Barry's Avatar
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    Re: Ballot Roundups

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    Barry's Avatar
    Founder & Moderator

    Re: Ballot Roundups

    Note Organizations on left are organized in approximately
    (somewhat) progressive to conservative
    More info at

    Last edited by Barry; 10-11-2020 at 12:40 PM.

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