As a cross-sector, member driven organization, East Bay EDA promotes, advocates and influences legislation and policy efforts that contribute to a strong economy that attracts business, job opportunities and investment to the East Bay region. The recommended position statements were reviewed by the Executive Committee on October 8, which voted to support the following state and countywide ballot positions consistent with East Bay EDA’s 2020 Legislative Platform.
Proposition 14 (Stem Cell Bond)
The East Bay is a known leader in the life sciences and healthcare sectors. Therefore, furthering the state’s investment in stem cell R&D could provide high-quality jobs and major funding to our research institutions in the East Bay. The ballot initiative would also establish training programs for undergraduate students and fellowships for graduate students related to advanced degrees and technical careers in stem cell research, treatments, and cures.
Proposition 16 (Affirmative Action)
East Bay EDA believes this is a critical step forward to ensuring diversity and increasing access for people of color and women who face inequalities in public employment, higher education, and contracting opportunities.
Proposition 19 (Property Tax Transfers)
East Bay EDA believes Proposition 19 would provide some financial relief to vulnerable populations seeking to leave wildfire-prone areas and generate needed revenue for fire protection services.
Alameda County Measure W (Home for All)
Adds an additional 0.5 percent sales tax in Alameda County for 10 years to provide essential services with the intention to fund housing and services for those experiencing homelessness, mental health services, job training, social safety net, and other general fund services. Measure W is expected to raise $150 million per year with annual audits and citizen oversight.
Homelessness affects everybody living and working in Alameda County. Although East Bay EDA acknowledges sales taxes are regressive, we believe the homelessness crisis requires significant investment and resources, particularly during a public health pandemic and growing economic insecurity facing the County’s most vulnerable residents and families.
Contra Costa County Measure X
Adds an additional 0.5 percent sales tax in Contra Costa County for the next 20 years, exempting food sales, to keep Contra Costa’s regional hospital open and staffed; fund community health centers; provide timely fire and emergency response; support crucial safety-net services; invest in early childhood services; protect vulnerable populations; and for other essential county services. The County estimates the tax would raise $81 million a year for the general fund with citizen oversight and annual audits.
Although East Bay EDA acknowledges sales taxes are regressive, new revenues are essential to meet growing critical needs, including investments in fire and paramedic services, health services, and other community services.