Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Manhattan Beach: Vote NO on Measure A Parcel Tax

Residents in Manhattan Beach are urged to oppose the Measure A Parcel Tax at this time for the following reasons:

•    The proposed Measure A parcel tax is too LARGE. At $1,095/year in the first year, it is over FOUR (4) times higher than the current $225/year Measure MB parcel tax, approved by two-thirds of the voters in 2018.
•    This parcel tax double dips. We already have the Measure MB parcel tax on our property tax bills which runs for another two years. We will be paying both the old tax and the new tax ADJUSTED FOR INFLATION for a total of $1,320.
•    As written, the proposed Measure A is indexed to inflation without limit. With inflation, this tax could easily RISE to over $2,000/year in less than 12 years. This could increase the total amount collected to OVER $20,000 per household in 12 years. Inflation is currently running at 8.5%. Proposition 13 passed in the 1970's exactly because inflation was pushing up property taxes and pricing people out of our homes.
•    By 2023 Measure A will be the largest parcel tax in LA County and 5th largest in the state.
•    Measure A would be in effect for 12 years. This is TWICE as long as the Measure MB parcel tax of 6 years ago and would be the longest running parcel tax in Manhattan Beach history.
•    Measure A raises $12 million per year, over $150,000,000 (one hundred fifty million dollars) and MORE with INFLATION over 12 years with FEW limitations on how our tax dollars are spent.
•    Tax payments will be collected in the district’s general fund. Measure A does not require transparency and accountability from the School Board on how the Parcel Tax dollars will be spent. 
•    As written in the Measure A MOU, “The District has sole discretion in the expenditure of Measure A revenue, providing that such expenditures comply with the terms and conditions of Measure A.” Such terms and conditions are not explicitly expressed in the Measure’s broad language, as neither budget nor pro forma are included. 
•    A citizen’s oversight committee has little (if any) influence on how the parcel tax proceeds are spent as long as they are spent within the broad parameters of the measure. Proposed Measure A’s language states the spending of the funds “shall be liberally construed.”
•    Further, even if the Parcel Tax passes, we are not confident the taxes will be spent appropriately. For example, the budget shows enrollment dropped by over 734 students and expenses went up instead of down. A new tax does not solve the current OVERSPENDING problem of this school board as clearly shown in their own budget report.
•    Measure A is opportunistic, rushing to appear on a low voter turnout June 7th primary election to take advantage of a LOOPHOLE allowing it to be passed with a simple 50% +1 majority. ALL other votes indebting homeowners in the past have required a TWO-THIRDS (67%) approval by voters. This is not fair to residents.
We are not against a parcel tax in theory.
We are against THIS parcel tax at this time. Please vote NO on June 7.

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