Is a two-thirds vote necessary for Chargers downtown site - KUSI News - San Diego, CA

Is a two-thirds vote necessary for Chargers downtown site

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Is a two-thirds vote necessary for Chargers downtown site Is a two-thirds vote necessary for Chargers downtown site

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) - One city councilmember is raising questions about whether a two-thirds vote is really required to pass a stadium proposal downtown.

The clock is ticking to draft a plan for a new stadium in San Diego.

City Councilmember David Alvarez is in favor of building one downtown.

No matter where the site, it's something that Mayor Kevin Faulconer said will be left for voters to decide, something that he said will require a two-thirds vote.

But Alvarez told Good Morning San Diego that isn't the case.

"It's definitely not a two-thirds vote according to the law. The law is very clear, Prop 218 was approved by the voters and it says that to increase a general tax not specific to anything, like this is, it requires 50 percent plus one. It is very clear and that's what this does ... It increases the TOT tax it doesn't say what it goes to, it just says we increase the TOT," Alvarez said.

" If you target a tax increase for a specific purpose, that special purpose tax under CA law requires a two-thirds vote. Clearly this is a tax for a special purpose. It's not going to police, fire, for roads. It's all designated to go to the stadium," said Richard Rider of the San Diego Tax Fighters.

Rider said Proposition 218 is a complicated law to understand but to simplify it. It's all going to boil down to the language on the ballot.

"If we have a specific tax increase or specific bond for the stadium or convention center then it still needs a two-thirds vote," Rider said.

This tax payer advocate said there are ways around a two-thirds vote.

One way is for the city to form an independent district.

It's been done before.

Remember the infamous "Chargers Ticket Guarantee" in the mid to late 90s? 

"They formed a bogus city agency consisting of three city managers and they did whatever the city council told them to do. The court said 'well that's an independent agency, you don't have to have a two-thirds vote, you don't have to have any vote, just use your bonds. Even though the tax payers were on the hook for the bonds," Rider said.

Rider believes a lot of San Diegans are still feeling snookered by that.

And in the end here, "I think there's a very good chance the voters will reject it simply because they are fed up with these convoluted games to avoid what is clearly desired that is voter approval," Rider added.



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