(Update) City of Tucson Ballot Measures


Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

Ahhh, so sad. The red light runners initiative by Tucson gadfly John Kromko and his group Tucson Traffic Justice failed to qualify for the ballot. Red-light cameras won't be put to vote.

So that leaves "Plan Tucson," the general plan for the City of Tucson for the next
decade, which will be on the ballot for public approval as required by state

And it leaves two propositions:

Proposistion 201 (Initiative Petition #2013-I004) Sustainable Retirement Benefits Act
(.pdf). The Committee for Sustainable Retirement in support of the
("The Committee") is the local group fronting for this out-of-state
operation by a Virginia-based advocacy organization
started by longtime ballot initiative activist Paul Jacob, the
Liberty Initiative Fund, and financed in part by the National Taxpayers
Union. This is the initiative to bankrupt the City of Tucson, and turn
us into Detroit. Finance Director Kelly Gottschalk estimates the change
would cost taxpayers $24 million extra in the
first year alone and tens of millions more each year for more than a
decade, placing the city in line for potential financial ruin.

Proposistion 401 Permanent Increase to the City of Tucson's Base Expenditure Limit (.pdf). The City Council is asking voters to approve a $50 million increase to what it can spend in a given year. Voters will decide whether city can lift state spending cap : The request won't raise taxes

or bring in any other new revenues, but it will authorize the city to
spend an extra $50 million each year, if it can find the money. If
voters turn down the measure, the city would be forced to make even
deeper cuts to services. If nothing's done by 2016, the city's expected
costs will exceed the state limit by $9.2 million.

Cities have two options to get around the limits, both requiring
voter/taxpayer approval: home rule or a permanent base increase.

Rule allows the city to adjust the limits each year to whatever fits
their needs, but it requires voter approval every four years. Tucson had
home rule from 2007-10, but it was voted out in the 2009 election.

permanent base increase only requires a single vote and, if approved,
would meet the city's spending needs well into the future.

The city last raised the base in 1987 by $46.9 million which was good enough to meet city spending needs for over two decades.

The spending-limit increase won't raise any additional revenue and
wouldn't result in a bigger tax bill for residents. It would just let
the city spend any money it collects.

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AZ BlueMeanie
The Blue Meanie is an Arizona citizen who wishes, for professional reasons, to remain anonymous when blogging about politics. Armed with a deep knowledge of the law, politics and public policy, as well as pen filled with all the colors stolen from Pepperland, the Blue Meanie’s mission is to pursue and prosecute the hypocrites, liars, and fools of politics and the media – which, in practical terms, is nearly all of them. Don’t even try to unmask him or he’ll seal you in a music-proof bubble and rendition you to Pepperland for a good face-stomping. Read blog posts by the infamous and prolific AZ Blue Meanie here.


  1. I predict Wailing, gnashing of teeth and rending of garments by the yahooligans over 401 screaming “Them soshulists are a spending our munnies like watah!!!” followed DIRECTLY and without any noticable head-explody from the congnitive dissonance, by Wailing, gnashing of teeth and rending of garments by the yahooligans over 401 screaming “They ain’t fixin mah streeets!”

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