Measure __ Direct Arguments and Rebuttal Arguments

Print
Press Enter to show all options, press Tab go to next option

 MEASURE __

Require Voter Approval Prior to Issuing or Incurring Certain Debt Obligations

Shall Newport Beach City Charter Section 1109 be amended to require at least fifty-five percent (55%) voter approval prior to issuing Certificates of Participation or Lease Revenue Bonds greater than fifty million dollars ($50,000,000.00) to finance capital projects?

 
Yes

 
No

 

 ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT OR OPPOSITION OF THE BALLOT MEASURE
ARE THE OPINIONS OF THE AUTHORS.

DIRECT ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF MEASURE __

REBUTTAL TO ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF MEASURE __

Certificates of participation (COP's) were used to incur over $225 million in debt service to finance the Civic Center.

When a municipality seeks to fund large projects using debt financing without getting voter approval, they circumvent the 2/3rd popular vote required by Prop 13 to issue bonds by using COPs instead.

COP's do not require a vote of the people, but they have the same effect bonds have of dedicating future revenue to make payments on the loan.

"Requiring voter approval for esoteric debt instruments, such as revenue bonds and 'certificates of participation' is wholly consistent with the philosophy of Proposition 13 which trusts the voters - not the politicians - with the most important fiscal decisions: new taxes and the assumption of public debt."

Jon Coupal
President, Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

In the case of our Civic Center, taxpayers pay $8 million per year until 2041 in "lease payments" to occupy its own city hall.

Measure_ requires 55% voter approval for new projects over $50 million dollars prior to issuing or incurring certain debt obligations.

This Charter Amendment would not apply to the refinancing of existing debt or emergency funding to repair damages caused by a natural disaster.

If you would like a say in large projects that require debt financing, then we humbly ask for your support. Thank you.

Marshall "Duffy" Duffield, Mayor
Kevin Muldoon, Councilman
Scott Peotter, Councilman



PDF of Direct Argument In Favor of Measure __

Due July 19, 2018      

***************

***************

DIRECT ARGUMENT AGAINST MEASURE __

REBUTTAL TO ARGUMENT AGAINST MEASURE __

California's Proposition 13 overwhelmingly passed in 1978.

Prior to Proposition 13, local governments set property tax rates, often abusing their ability to tax.

Proposition 13 required 2/3rds voter approval for "general obligation" bonds.

Unfortunately, Sacramento's lobby created financial instruments to circumvent Proposition 13's 2/3rds voter requirement.

In 2010, former councilmembers Keith Curry, Rush Hill, Mike Henn, and Steve Rosansky used Certificates of Participations to borrow $126,660,000 to build the Civic Center Project. This was done without voter approval, using numerous city-owned properties as collateral.

Today, Newport's taxpayers are paying $8,000,000 a year in debt service for the Civic Center Project.

The $128,000,000 debt will cost us $228,000,000 when paid off in 2041.

Voters should have the right to decide if they approve of borrowing large amounts of debt, against collateralized public assets, to pay for future projects.

The current City Council voted 6-1 to require debt issued over $50 Million to receive 55% of the vote.

Although the proposed Charter Amendment is a good first step, 2/3rds of voter approval for debt on large city projects in excess of $25 million is a better threshold than the threshold of 55% of the vote when debt is used to finance projects in excess of $50 million.

Even though this Charter Amendment is a step in the right direction, we should reject it and send it back for a higher 2/3rds voter approval threshold and lower $25 million debt ceiling.

Bob Rush
President, Newporters for Ethical Government

 

PDF of Direct Argument Against Measure __

Due July 19, 2018