Election November 2022

DECIDE

Pros & Cons

Explains the individual ballot measures and summarizes the major arguments both FOR and AGAINST.

Measure T

Progressive Business Tax

Business Tax Code

Pass: Majority vote

Measure W

Fair Elections Act

Charter Amendment & Ordinance

Pass: Majority vote

Measure V

Expanding Just Cause for Eviction Ordinance

Ordinance

Pass: Majority vote

Measure S

Non-citizen Voting

Charter Amendment

Pass: Majority vote

Measure U

Affordable Housing and Infrastructure Bond

Infrastructure Bond

Pass: 2/3 Vote

Measure Q

Article 34 - affordable housing authorizations

Ordinance

Pass: Majority vote

Measure Y

Oakland Zoo initiative

Parcel Tax Initiative

Pass: Majority vote

Measure R

Gender-neutral language

Charter Amendment

Pass: Majority vote

Measure X

Govt Reform Charter Amendments

Charter Amendment

Pass: Majority vote

Measure H

OUSD: Measure N Extension

Parcel Tax Extension

Pass: 2/3 vote

 

Candidate Forums

Meet the Candidates running for each office and ask them questions

Title

Event Date

Start Time

Registration

Peralta CC Trustee District 3

Canceled

District Attorney Runoff

9/19/22

6:00 PM

Board of Supervisors District 3

9/19/22

7:00 PM

East Bay Municipal Utilities Ward 3

9/21/22

6:30 PM

Oakland Unified School District 4

9/27/22

6:00 PM

Oakland Unified School District 6

9/27/22

7:00 PM

Peralta CC Trustee District 5

9/28/22

6:00 PM

City Council District 2

9/29/22

6:30 PM

Oakland Unified School District 2

9/29/22

7:30 PM

AC Transit Board Member-at-Large

10/1/22

10:00 AM

AC Transit Board Ward/District 3

10/1/22

10:45 AM

Peralta CC Trustee District 7

10/1/22

11:30 AM

Oakland Mayor

10/3/22

6:00 PM

City Council District 4

10/6/22

6:00 PM

City Council District 6

10/6/22

7:00 PM

 

Ranked Choice Voting

The Basics

What is Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) and why is it used?

A system where voters choose their first- , second-, third-, fourth- and fifth-choice candidates for each office. It eliminates the cost and time needed for run-off elections.

How long has RCV been used in Oakland?

It was implemented starting in the 2010 Elections.

Other Details

What if I rank the same candidate multiple times? 

Your ranked vote will only count once per candidate, so it is the same as leaving the choices blank.

Need more information? 

Go to acvote.org/voting/rcv

How Does It Work?

Round 1 of Vote Count

 

If a candidate receives more than 50% of the first-choice votes, that candidate is declared the winner. 

Round 2 of Vote Count

 

If there is no winner from Round 1:

  • First, the candidate with the fewest
    first-choice votes is eliminated from the count

  • Second, the voters whose votes were eliminated have their second-choice votes added to the count

  • If any candidate now has more than 50% of the counted votes, that candidate is declared the winner

Rounds 3 to 5 of Vote Count

If there is no winner from from Round 2, a similar elimination and counting continues until one candidate receives over 50% of the counted votes.

To reiterate...

  • 2nd choice counted, only if 1st choice eliminated

  • 3nd choice counted, only if 1st & 2nd choice eliminated

  • 4th choice counted, only if 1st, 2nd, & 3rd choice eliminated

  • 5th choice counted, only if 1st, 2nd, 3rd & 4th choice eliminated

 

Who are we electing?

Here are the most important responsibilities of local elected officials. 

Each has a link where you can learn other important details.

 CITY OF OAKLAND 

Office of the Mayor

Responsibilities:

  • is elected for a four-year term and can only serve two terms.

  • appoints the City Administrator, an employee, who is responsible to run City services like police, fire, parks, recreation centers, libraries and city streets. (City Council approves this person) 

  • recommends programs, laws and a budget to the City Council.

  • nominates residents to many commissions that provide oversight to important services.

City Councilmember

Districts 2, 4, & 6

Oakland is divided into seven districts. Each district has one Councilmember with a four-year term. In addition, one City Council member is elected by the whole city, “at large.”

 

Responsibilities:

The Council sets policy for City departments, can change local laws (called ordinances) for things like zoning, permits and licenses or local taxes. The City Council approves City contracts and the City budget.

OUSD Board Member

Districts 2, 4, & 6

Oakland Unified School District is divided into seven districts. 

 

Responsibilities:

Board directors are elected to work as a team with the superintendent to ensure students have access to a quality education. They set direction, adopt and monitor a budget, oversee the  superintendent and advocate for children, the school district and public schools

ALAMEDA COUNTY

County Supervisor

Districts 2, 4, & 6

Oakland is in Alameda County. The County has five districts. Each district has a Supervisor who is elected for a four-year term.

Responsibilities:

  • appoints the County Administrator, who is an employee who runs the day-to-day operations for county services, such as public health, mental health, social services, probation, child support, public defender and elections.

  • adopts the budget, approves contracts (including

District Attorney

Responsibilities:

The District Attorney charges and prosecutes criminal violations of the laws of California. Prosecutions are in such areas as felonies (like murder, homicide, manslaughter, rape, assault and aggravated battery) and fraud (like consumer, real estate, mortgage, insurance, medical and financial fraud) and crimes against elders and dependent adults, and environmental protection.

Peralta Community College District Trustee

Districts 3, 5, & 7

The Community College District is comprised of Laney and Merritt Colleges in Oakland, College of Alameda, and Berkeley City College. 

The Community College District is managed by a Governing Board of seven Trustees. Trustees serve 4-year terms. Each Trustee is elected by Area. Parts of Oakland are represented in Areas 3, 5 and 7

Responsibilities:

 

The Board hires the Chancellor, who is the chief executive, and is responsible for educational quality and financial health of the colleges in the District. 

REGIONAL GOVERNMENT: Alameda and Contra Costa Counties
Many important public services are governed by independent elected bodies that have authority beyond Alameda County.

AC Transit Board Member

At-Large and Ward (District) 3

Directors serve four-year terms. There are no term limits.

Responsibilities:

Directors set the budget, set policies and manage services to keep buses
operating. These include hiring a General Manager and General Counsel,
setting salaries and benefits and managing labor negotiations.

EBMUD Board Member

Wards (Districts) 3 & 4

East Bay Municipal Utilities District (EBMUD) provides safe and adequate drinking water and wastewater treatment services in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.

Oakland votes on Wards (Districts) 3 and 4 of a seven-member Board. Directors serve four-year terms.

Responsibilities:

 

The Directors set rates, manage the budget and staff responsible for EBMUD services and facilities.

 
 

Vote With The League

We never recommend an individual party or candidate, we will take positions on issues and associated ballot measures after significant study and discussion.

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When the League has studied an issue in depth and members have voted for a position on that issue, the League may support, oppose or remain neutral on ballot measures

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When the League has not studied an issue in depth or adopted a position, it makes no recommendation

Measure

Progressive Business Tax
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Measure T would amend the Business Tax Code to make it a progressive rather than a flat tax. That means businesses would pay a progressively higher rate on gross receipts as their revenue increases. Changes would impact all businesses other than residential rentals and cannabis enterprises. The City Council, and the labor and business communities, compromised competing proposals to bring this measure to the ballot. Differences centered on the levels of rate increases more than on the shift to a progressive model, which other cities including San Francisco, Richmond and San Jose have adopted. COVID’s impacts made it particularly difficult to determine what rates would increase general fund revenue but not overly burden businesses already here or discourage others from locating in Oakland. If passed, Measure T would generate approximately $21 million for Oakland’s General Fund. While there may be merit to suggestions that rate increases should be introduced more incrementally, we support the extensive efforts of all parties to balance competing revenue and rate concerns and to bring an overdue update to Oakland’s Business Tax Code.

Measure

Affordable Housing and Infrastructure Bond
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With Measure U, Oakland is asking voters for the resources to continue to develop affordable housing projects, undertake ongoing street repair, and maintain aging buildings and infrastructure such as libraries. In 2016 voters approved a similar request in Measure KK. The City has largely issued or committed those 2016 bonds. To continue the work approved under Measure KK, the City would issue $850 million in new general obligation bonds to pay for affordable housing ($350 million), transportation upgrades including street repair ($290 million) and facilities improvement and repair ($210 million). Property owners repay Oakland’s bond indebtedness through a yearly tax based on the assessed value of their property. This year the City adopted a policy to limit the yearly tax to no more than approximately $220 per $100,000 of assessed value, which is the rate anticipated for 2022-23. To adhere to the limit, the City would issue new bonds under Measure U as older bonds are retired or the tax base grows. The policy on limiting the bond indebtedness mitigates concerns about the amount of debt to support infrastructure improvements. Other issues are whether planning and spending will be efficient and whether oversight and transparency will be robust. The measure mandates an annual independent audit performed by an external entity. Oversight is assigned to the existing Affordable Housing & Infrastructure Bonds Public Oversight Committee. What is clear is that Oakland’s aging roads and buildings require more investment and that low cost housing needs must be addressed. Meeting these critical needs requires additional funding since Measure KK bond money, particularly the housing bonds, has been spent or committed to projects and much remains to be done.

Measure

Govt Reform Charter Amendments
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Measure X requires voters to vote on a bundle of unrelated changes to City governance. The changes include term limits that are not absolute and allow candidates to run again for office after sitting out one term. Other proposals would set salaries for public officials and expand the authority and staff of the City Auditor’s office. Measure X would also make the Mayor’s veto power in cases of ties more effective and change requirements for placing a measure on the ballot. While some of these proposals may have merit individually, Measure X requires blanket approval of all. Changes to the Charter and rules for governance are foundational. Proposals should allow a clear expression of the voters’ will and should reflect more extensive community discussion.

Measure

Non-citizen Voting
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The League has not studied the issues in this measure, and so makes no recommendation.

Measure

Gender-neutral language
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The language in the City Charter needs updating to honor Oakland’s commitment to inclusivity and representation. Adopting gender-neutral language would acknowledge the current diverse makeup of the City’s staff and the full spectrum of their gender identities. The proposed changes would also align Oakland with the professional guidelines from the League of California Cities and with state policies and legislation.

Measure

Expanding Just Cause for Eviction Ordinance
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The League has not studied the issues in this measure, and so makes no recommendation.

Measure

Oakland Zoo initiative
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Measure Y proposes a new 20-year parcel tax on Oakland property owners to support the Oakland Zoo. The City of Oakland owns the Zoo at Knowland Park and contracts out its management. The additional revenue from the proposed tax could be spent on the full range of the zoo’s operations and programs and will therefore benefit all visitors. However, Oakland residents are only 15% of annual visitors to the zoo but would generate 100% of the increased revenue. The tax would impose a $68 assessment on all single family homes and units in multi-unit residences, while taxes on nonresidential properties would vary according to square footage and frontage measures. The Zoo’s current annual budget is approximately $22 million. The tax would raise approximately $12 million in additional annual funding. Oakland and Alameda County tax revenue already provides some support for the Zoo and other valued cultural institutions that serve the broader community, such as Chabot Space and Science Center, Fairyland and Oakland Museum of California. While it may be appropriate to increase that support in the case of the Zoo or other institutions, the cost should be distributed in a way that does not disproportionately impact only Oakland property owners.

Measure

Fair Elections Act
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Oakland has a problem with money in politics. Less than half of campaign funds come from Oakland residents. Only a small fraction of Oaklanders, usually those more affluent, make contributions to candidates. Measure W, the Oakland Fair Elections Act, offers a new public financing program that would enable candidates to run for office even without ties to larger donors. Eligible residents would each receive four $25 vouchers (“Democracy Dollars”) they could donate to their preferred candidate(s). Over three election cycles, a similar program in Seattle has attracted a more diverse pool of local candidates and increased participation in elections across groups that differ by age, race, and socioeconomic status. Measure W would also impose new lower contribution limits, require more disclosure from political committees about their funding, and extend existing bans on lobbying by former city officials from one to two years. Some object that we have more pressing problems, but there is no more pressing issue than maintaining a representative and vibrant democracy. Proposed funding amounts to approximately a half of one percent of Oakland’s budget. Give Oakland residents a stronger voice in our elections.

Measure

Article 34 - affordable housing authorizations
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Addressing Oakland’s lack of affordable and low rent housing is a priority. Doing so requires that the City obtain voters’ authorization to develop, construct, acquire or finance low rent or affordable projects. With voters’ approval of these authorizations, the City could move forward with pilot programs or larger projects without unnecessary delay. The City would use the authorizations only once it had developed specific proposals, obtained funding, and approved projects.

Measure

OUSD: Measure N Extension
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In 2014 Oakland voters approved Measure N, a 10-year parcel tax to fund the College and Career Readiness Act. The goal was to improve high school graduation rates with an innovative program highlighting career paths as well as rigorous academics. OUSD reports that in the years after this program began (2015-2019), overall graduation rates increased by 12% and graduation rates among black students increased by 15.4%. In addition, dropout rates for all students have decreased 11%, for Black male students by 17.9%. Students who participate choose one of multiple career tracks including health care, education and business. They benefit from professional mentors, internships, jobs and technical training as well as academic, social, and emotional support services. Measure H asks that Measure N parcel tax of $120 be extended for 14 years. Otherwise the tax ends in 2025. One could argue that this successful program should now be integrated into OUSD’s budgeting. But reliance on current school finances would jeopardize the program’s future. Absent changes to Prop 13, a parcel tax is one of limited ways to ensure consistent funding and secure this program for our youth.