This is an archive of a past election.
See for current information.
LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund If you appreciate our service to voters, please consider helping us with a donation.
Smart Voter
Humboldt County, CA November 4, 2014 Election
Measure U
Sales Tax
City of Rio Dell

Majority Approval Required

Pass: 376 / 51.9% Yes votes ...... 349 / 48.1% No votes

See Also: Index of all Measures

Results as of Nov 4 11:42pm
Information shown below: Impartial Analysis | Arguments |

Shall the City of Rio Dell increase the sales tax by 1%, for five years only, providing locally controlled funding that cannot be taken by the State?

Impartial Analysis from City Attorney
The City Council is submitting to the voters the question of whether to approve an ordinance enacting a temporary sales tax within the City of Rio Dell to fund City services and facilities, such as improving police protection, repairing streets and potholes, and improving other general City services and facilities. The tax rate would be one percent (1.0%) of the retail sales price ― or one cent for an item that costs one dollar. The tax would remain in effect for five years.

A "sales tax" is a combination of "sales and use tax" and "transactions and use tax." Both are levied on the sale or use of tangible personal property sold at retail, with certain limited exceptions. Retailers collect the tax at the time of sale and remit the funds to the State Board of Equalization which administers the tax.

Currently, the tax on retail sales in Rio Dell is seven and one-half percent (7.50%) of the purchase price. This measure would authorize a 1.0% transactions and use (sales) tax, which would increase the total sales tax rate to 8.50%. The tax would automatically terminate five years after it becomes operative, unless extended by the voters.

The tax proceeds would be deposited into the City's general fund and be available to support the full range of municipal services. Because this measure does not legally restrict the use of tax revenue to any specific purposes, it is classified as a "general tax," not a "special tax." The tax proceeds may be used for any valid municipal governmental purpose and cannot legally be taken away by the State. The tax proceeds would be subject to the same independent annual audit requirements as other general fund revenue. The audit report would be a matter of public record.

A "Yes" vote is a vote in favor of the tax. A "No" vote is a vote against the tax. This measure would be approved if it receives a simple majority of "Yes" votes.

/s/ Russell S. Gans City Attorney for the City of Rio Dell

The above statement is an impartial analysis of Measure "U". The measure is printed in full in this sample ballot pamphlet. Additional copies of the sample ballot pamphlet may be obtained from the City Clerk's Office or by visiting

This election is archived. Any links to sources outside of Smart Voter may no longer be active. No further links will be added to this page.
Links to sources outside of Smart Voter are provided for information only and do not imply endorsement.

Arguments For Measure U Arguments Against Measure U
VOTE YES on Measure "U" to protect what we all want in Rio Dell: safe neighborhoods, responsive law enforcement, decent roads, economic prosperity, public transportation, improved property values and a VIBRANT future for our city. This is the goal of Measure "U".

The City of Rio Dell has struggled to maintain essential community services. Traditional revenues have remained flat while costs have increased steadily. Over the last 4 years city staff has been reduced by 30%, including 3 Police officers and 3 Public Works Utility Workers who maintain streets and grounds and the water and sewer piping systems. Even after these cuts, the General Fund Reserve was drawn down $144,000 in 2014-15 to maintain baseline community services. Measure "U" cannot solve all of the problems, but we can restore to a limited degree the priority services that have been lost by authorizing a temporary 1% local sales tax.

All Measure "U" funds (100%) will stay locally controlled in Rio Dell for Rio Dell. By law, the State CANNOT take this funding away.

A YES vote on Measure "U" also applies to non-residents and visitors who will pay their fair share for transactions within the city. Basic necessities like groceries and prescriptions WON'T be taxed.

Measure "U" is a smart investment, lasting only 5 years. It cannot be extended without a new vote.

A YES vote on Measure "U" will help the city to focus over next five years on economic development. Let's spend the next five years working to improve Rio Dell rather than the next 5 years watching city services diminish. This is our opportunity to capture the momentum from recent positive developments in the city.

Please join this broad community effort to keep our community moving forward.


/s/ Jack Thompson, Mayor, City of Rio Dell

No arguments against Measure U were submitted.

Humboldt Home Page || Statewide Links || About Smart Voter || Feedback
Created: July 23, 2015 14:56 PDT
Smart Voter <>
Copyright © League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
The League of Women Voters neither supports nor opposes candidates for public office or political parties.