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LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
Smart Voter
Los Angeles County, CA April 13, 2004 Election
Measure Lancaster-A
Special Tax for Law Enforcement Services
City of Lancaster

Parcel Tax - 2/3 Approval Required

3814 / 47.3% Yes votes ...... 4248 / 52.7% No votes

See Also: Index of all Measures

Information shown below: Impartial Analysis | Arguments |

Shall the City of Lancaster levy a special tax of $25 on each parcel of real property in the City for the sole purpose of funding ten (10) additional Sheriff's Deputies?

Impartial Analysis from David R. McEwen City Attorney
The City Council (the 'City Council') of the City of Lancaster (the 'City'), on December 9, 2003 adopted Resolution 03-438 submitting a ballot measure to the voters at the General Municipal Election to be held on April 13,
2004. The ballot measure provides for the levy of a special tax in the amount of twenty-five dollars ($25.00) on each parcel of real property in the City as shown on the current assessor?s parcel map, but excluding those parcels owned by governmental entities (the 'Measure'). The special tax will be collected by the County of Los Angeles (the 'County') on behalf of the City in the same manner and subject to the same penalties and charges as with other taxes collected by the County. The proceeds of the special tax will be deposited in a separate account of the City and expended for the sole purpose of paying the costs of ten (10) additional Sheriff?s Deputies.

The contract with the County for law enforcement services provides that the City may have additional Deputies assigned to the City at a cost of $110,000 per Deputy (including salary, benefits, overhead, supervisorial costs, etc.) for the first year. The 10 Deputies will cost the City approximately $1,100,000. The City estimates that based on 42,486 parcels, the special tax will produce approximately $1,062,150 in total revenues. The number of parcels will increase as property is developed in the future. Any cost of providing the 10 Deputies in excess of the revenues provided by the special tax will be paid from other funds of the City. The amount of the Special Tax, if approved, is fixed and cannot be increased without a separate two-thirds (2/3) voter approval.

In order for the Measure to be approved, two-thirds (2/3) of the votes cast must be in favor of the Measure.

A 'yes' vote on the Measure is a vote for the levy of Special Tax and the addition of 10 Sheriff?s Deputies.

A 'no' vote on the Measure is a vote against the levy of the Special Tax and the addition of 10 Sheriff?s Deputies.

  Official Information

City of Lancaster
News and Analysis

L.A. Daily News Antelope Valley Edition

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Arguments For Measure Lancaster-A
The City of Lancaster has experienced remarkable growth during the past several years and will continue to be one of State?s fastest growing communities. Despite becoming a big city, Lancaster has retained much of its small town values and atmosphere. Unfortunately, along with growth, we have experienced what other big cities lament, a growth in crime. Gang crime, narcotics, and an increased parolee population have led to a steady rise in crime for the past five years. Response times to call for police service which are not life threatening emergencies have also continued to rise each year. Even more disconcerting is the escalation in violent crime in 2003. During this growth in population and law enforcement challenges, the number of deputy sheriffs has remained the same. The economy, expanded law enforcement costs, and Sacramento?s trend of holding back City funds to pay for the State?s overspending, have strained the City?s budget. More to the point, it derailed the City?s plans to increase the overextended personnel at Lancaster Sheriff?s Station.

The City, in partnership with local rental property owners, has recently provided funding for eight more deputies. By approving this special tax of $25/year, you will be placing ten additional deputies on the streets. Help us turn back the tide on crime and reduce response times. This special tax can only be used for deputy personnel and cannot be raised without being approved by the voters. While no one likes to see additional tax costs, when you measure the toll crime extorts from our community, both financially and in human tragedy, it makes the $25/year a sound investment in the future of our families and our community.

The need is real and you have the power to make a difference!

/s/Frank Roberts, Mayor
Chris Johnson, Pastor
Thomas E. Pigott, Retired Lancaster Sheriff?s Station Commander
Mike Pope, Past President of Lancaster Old Town Site
Mark Troth, Past President of Greater AV Association of Realtors

(No arguments against Measure Lancaster-A were submitted)

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Created: June 7, 2004 14:27 PDT
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