By Tommy Hough
San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action recently sent a letter to all 160-plus members of the San Diego County Democratic Party Central Committee to present our club's concerns and case against the current SANDAG ballot proposal on the November ballot (Measure A), and ask that the committee take a NO position and vote against a county party endorsement of the measure.
August 17, 2016
Dear Central Committee Member,
As you're aware, you'll have an opportunity to vote on a county party endorsement of the SANDAG tax increase ballot measure at the upcoming San Diego Democratic County Central Committee meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 23.
At our July 13 meeting, San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action held a forum on the SANDAG tax increase ballot measure. Both sides of the measure were in attendance to present their case before club members and to take questions. Following a debate among club members, the club voted by a 2-1 margin to oppose the measure, and we have since joined with the San Diego Quality of Life Coalition in opposition to it.
The coalition includes IBEW Local 569, HVAC Local 230, the Climate Action Campaign, National Nurses United, Sierra Club San Diego, San Diego 350.org, the San Diego Chapter of the League of Conservation Voters, the San Diego County Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation and a number of other area organizations.
Our members opted to oppose the measure for a variety of reasons, including:
In two years, communities will have the opportunity to "go back to the drawing board" with voters in much the same manner Governor Brown is planning to do so in order to codify the state's climate-related executive orders. Cities in the county also have the option of utilizing a different approach than SANDAG — including using MTS, which covers more urban areas.
In a plan where there are no line-items, we as a club want to support the best policy — and the right policy. At this time, notwithstanding the laudable volume of work put into the measure and the benefits it may bring to some county residents, the SANDAG plan remains something San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action members oppose by a 2-1 margin.
We ask that you consider your support for the measure, and entertain a "no" vote against the tax increase ballot measure this Tuesday evening.
Thank you for your consideration.
San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action
Tommy Hough is a San Diego broadcast personality, wilderness and parks advocate, California Democratic Party delegate, and the co-founder and former president of San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action. He was a candidate for San Diego City Council in the 2018 election cycle.