The Los Angeles County Registrar/ Recorder released final certified results of the March 3 primary elections on March 27 for local, county and state measures and officials.
Among the many things Long Beach residents were asked to vote for, the Measure A sales-tax extension was one of them. The measure narrowly passed by 16 votes, according to the certified results. The passing of the measure extends the city’s extra 1% sales-and-use tax beyond its end date of 2027.
Local activist group, the Long Beach Reform Coalition (LBRC)–– which has been a prominent opposer of the measure, announced Tuesday, March 31, that it is raising funds to pay for a recount of the ballots.
“We believe that [voters] have rejected Measure A, and we are demanding a recount to prove it,” the group stated in a mass email to its members and supporters. “Under the state election code, we have a right to this recount if we can put down a deposit of approximately $20,000.”
Ian Patton, LBRC executive director, said the City’s Clerk’s office was still calculating the exact cost to pay for the recount.
The LBRC cite California State Election Code §15620, which states the public has five days after the official canvass and any postcanvass risk-limiting audit is completed to request a recount.
The group stated that it needed to collect donations by April 6. The recount would then take place on April 8.
“Within hours after putting out a mass email to our grassroots supporters yesterday evening, we had already received donations and pledges totaling over $6,000, and they continue to roll in this morning,” the LBRC stated in a press release. “Clearly, there is a strong desire to know the exact outcome of Measure A and whether it really did just barely pass.”
Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia, Fire Department Chief Xavier Espino and Police Department Chief Robert Luna supported Measure A during the election. They stated that funds collected through the measure would be used to support emergency-response services, police and fire departments, and parks and libraries.
The LBRC has criticised the City’s money spending decisions multiple times, and oftentimes questioned the fact that revenue collected through the tax was budgeted into the City’s General Fund.
“If the recount is successful in overturning the outcome of Measure A, all funds to the County will be refunded, and we in turn will refund our donors for this effort,” the LBRC said.
Folks interested in donating can visit http://lbreformcoalition.org/donate/.