presents
Voter’s Edge California
Get the facts before you vote.
Voter’s Edge California
Go to top
Brought to you by
MapLight
League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
KALW 2016 Election Guide@kalw
November 8, 2016 — California General Election
Share your knowledge

Do you feel better informed having used Voter's Edge?

Help us inform other voters.

City Responsibility for Maintaining Street TreesCharter Amendment

County
November 8, 2016California General Election

City and County of San Francisco
Measure E Charter Amendment - Majority Approval Required

To learn more about measures, follow the links for each tab in this section. For most screenreaders, you can hit Return or Enter to enter a tab and read the content within.

Election Results

Passing

283,009 votes yes (78.59%)

77,078 votes no (21.41%)

Shall the Charter of the City and County of San Francisco be amended to transfer responsibility for the maintenance of street trees to the City, establish the Street Tree Maintenance Fund primarily to pay for such maintenance and the maintenance of trees on San Francisco Unified School District property, and require an annual contribution by the City to the Fund of $19 million, adjusted annually for changes in aggregate discretionary City revenues; and to affirm the Planning Department's determination under the California Environmental Quality Act?

Summary

The Way It Is Now: City law generally requires property owners to maintain trees in the public sidewalk area next to their property as well as the sidewalk around those trees.

A property owner is usually liable for injuries and property damage other people may suffer resulting from the owner’s failure to maintain those trees and sidewalks damaged by those trees.

The San Francisco Unified School District (School District) is responsible for maintaining trees on its property.

The Proposal: Proposition E is a Charter amendment that would transfer responsibility from property owners to the City for maintaining trees and sidewalks damaged by the trees. The City would then be liable for injuries and property damage resulting from failure to maintain the trees and to repair sidewalks damaged by the trees.

The City would pay for maintaining these trees and sidewalks by setting aside $19 million per year from the City’s General Fund, adjusted annually based on the City’s revenue.

The City could give up to $500,000 per year from the set-aside to the School District to help pay for the cost of maintaining trees on public school property.

Until January 1, 2017, the Mayor would have the authority to terminate the fund and the set-aside, based on the Mayor’s review of the City’s financial condition.

— Ballot Simplification Committee

Financial effect

City Controller Ben Rosenfield has issued the following statement on the fiscal impact of Proposition E:

Should the proposed charter amendment be approved by the voters, in my opinion, it would significantly increase the cost of government.

The proposed amendment would require general fund contribution to a newly created fund, the Street Tree Maintenance Fund, of $19 million beginning in fiscal year (FY) 2017–18. This fund would be used to pay for City services to maintain street trees as of July 1, 2017. The cost to the City in FY 2017–18 would be $13.5 million as the City has already budgeted $5.5 million for these services.

In subsequent years, contributions to the fund would be adjusted by the aggregate change in the City’s overall discretionary revenue. The City would be able to temporarily suspend the required budget increases in any year in which a general fund deficit of $200 million or more was forecast.

 

This proposed amendment is not in compliance with a non-binding, voter-adopted city policy regarding set-asides. The policy seeks to limit set-asides which reduce General Fund dollars that could otherwise be allocated by the Mayor and the Board of Supervisors in the annual budget process.

— City Controller Ben Rosenfield

YES vote means

If you vote “yes,” you want to amend the Charter to transfer responsibility from property owners to the City for maintaining trees on sidewalks around their property as well as sidewalks damaged by the trees. The City would pay for this by setting aside $19 million per year from its General Fund, adjusted annually based on City revenues.

NO vote means

If you vote “no,” you do not want to make these changes.

Use tabs to select your choice. Use return to create a choice. You can access your choices by navigating to 'My Choices'.

On your actual ballot, you can vote 'yes' or 'no' on this measure.

Please share this site to help others research their voting choices.

PUBLISHING:PRODUCTION SERVER:PRODUCTION