Local Election Results: Measure Q Passes, Measure G Trails, Provenza Could Be Heading for Runoff in November

One big question after Tuesday night is how many votes remain to be counted in Yolo County.  Just under 12,000 votes were counted in the city of Davis for Measure Q and just under 13,000 in the DJUSD race in Measure G.  Looking back at the 2016 primary, the actual number voted was just under 23,000.  That either means there could be around 10,000 more votes to be counted, or turnout was lower than four years ago.

For Measure Q that won’t matter.  The sales tax renewal passed by a whopping 9449 to 2322, or 80-20 percent.  That will make the sales tax permanent.

It may ignite questions about whether they undershot with the tax, but Dan Carson in an election evening interview told the Vanguard that they could not afford to risk the tax, and that they put forth a professional campaign effort.

Meanwhile, in the county supervisor race for the 4th Supervisorial District, three-term incumbent Jim Provenza has a healthy lead over second place Linda Deos, but the Election Day tally has brought his overall total to less than the 50 percent threshold—down from just over 51 percent with the pre-election day votes.

If that holds, he would have to face Linda Deos in a November run off.  David Abramson pulled in 984 votes, good for 13.79 and just enough to force the runoff, potentially.

The 5th Supervisorial Race up in Woodland and rural parts of the county proved very interesting and is clearly too close to call.  At the end of the night, longtime incumbent Duane Chamberlain was ahead of Woodland Councilmember and former Mayor Angel Barajas by a scant 93 votes, as his challenge has proven much more robust than Art Pimentel’s from four years ago.

We will have to see what happens with the late vote count, as that one is close enough to swing on such numbers.

Finally, the DJUSD parcel tax received 65 percent of the vote so far.  That is shy of the two-thirds needed for passage.  It also ends up being right at what the measure polled at last year, despite what has been described as a large effort to mobilize their vote.

ANALYSIS

If that vote holds, it could mean that the district either has to forgo teacher salary increases or has to make large across-the-board cuts.  It is a strong message potentially to the school district that they may have reached the end of the community’s willingness to support parcel taxes at a two-thirds votes.

The key question is whether that result will hold up.

Our back-of-the-envelope calculations suggest that, more likely than not, the final vote will fall just short.

The initial numbers were that yes had just 63.9 percent in the early voting.  By the end of the election night, the percentage rose slightly to 65.1 percent, and still probably 1.6 points short of the two-thirds needed.

The good news for those supporting the measure is that the election day ballots came in at 66.9 percent or just over the two-thirds threshold.  The bad news is that looks like it will be insufficient to put the measure over the top.

Generally, the late vote-by-mail ballots resemble election day figures rather than the early ballots.  Assuming that there are 10,000 votes left and that they come in at the same 66.9 percent, that would push the vote to 65.9 percent—just shy of the two-thirds needed.

In fact, if that is the final vote result, it would have taken only an additional 188 yes votes to clear the two-thirds threshold.

Assuming again 10,000 remaining votes, by our calculation, it would take a 68.8 percent yes vote percentage in those, in order to push the ballot measure to victory.

Our view is that is not exactly impossible—other tax measures have cleared that number.  But we view it as unlikely.  That would be two full percentage points higher than the election day vote percentage.  While not impossible, it seems like a lot of ground to make up.

Stay tuned.

—David M. Greenwald reporting


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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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34 Comments

  1. Alan Miller

    The sales tax renewal passed by a whopping 9449 to 2322, or 80-20 percent.

    Davis – always willing to whop itself with a sales tax.

    David Abramson pulled in 984 votes, good for 13.79 and just enough to force the runoff, potentially.

    Actually what is forcing a runoff is the lack of a choice voting system in America, and the dual forces of voter stupidity and party power that hold our so-called, and not, democratic process in place.

    Our view is that is not exactly impossible—

    The ground-squirrel that just ran past my kitchen window wholly agrees, and has the same level of insight.

  2. Dave Hart

    The problem is the absolutely ridiculous requirement for a 2/3 vote on taxes.  Why is it in anybody’s general interest to allow 34% of the voters to decide anything?  Voter turnout is always lower in a primary than during the general, especially presidential, elections. I”m sure the DJUSD Board knew that and there were reasons they felt they couldn’t wait, but it’s a thing.

    And while too many NO votes came from across the district, it is a fact that the El Macero/Willowbank district returned a majority of NO on G.  No coincidence when looking at the attitude they display in their relationship to the city of Davis in general.  There’s a sociology dissertation in there somewhere.

    1. Bill Marshall

      Voter turnout is always lower in a primary than during the general, especially presidential, elections.

      Not in Davis, but we don’t have the final #’s yet… ex., yesterday… about half of the voters, in the precinct I worked in, NPP’s, were there for sure to vote in the Demo primary (cross-over)… with NPP’s in Davis being a pretty high %-age, very few (less than 10) chose the NP ballot.

      Now, for a primary where one occupant has no opposition, maybe, but not likely… I suggest you work the polls sometimes, particularly primaries, and see what I mean.

    2. Matt Williams

      Dave, I’m going to respond to your comment both as an El Macero resident and as someone who voted Yes on Measure G.  I couldn’t have said the latter prior to the closing of the polls on Election Day due to my sworn obligation to remain non-partisan (since I am a Director of the League of Women Voters) and disclosing my personal vote wiould have violated that oath.

      The  data graphic provided below shows the precinct by precinct vote count on Measure G.  The sort to the left is by geography working from southeast to northwest.  The sort to the right is by percentage of Yes votes.  The color coding from red to orange to white to green to blue represents the ascending order of percentage of Yes votes from a low of 17.6% to a high of 79.5%.  Note the high concentration of red and orange in the neighborhoods on both sides of Mace Boulevard.

      That data tells me at least three stories.  First, if you want to point fingers at El Macero, as you did, I think you need to widen your perspective and look at all five of the precincts on either side of South Mace.  In aggregate those five precincts voted only 53.3% for Measure G, which was 226 votes below the 2/3 threshold.  Perhaps it was the Mace Mess that defeated Measure G.  Disaffected voters = No votes.

      To a lesser extent than the five precincts of far east Davis, the five precincts of far west Davis expressed less than enthralled opinion of Measure G.  They only voted yes 62.7% of the time, and accounted for 44 votes of the shortfall.

      The third story is told by eight of the precincts along the North Mace / East Covell corridor, which only voted yes 58.6% of the time, and accounted for 414 votes of the shortfall.

      I’ll leave it to the Vanguard readers to cogitate on those three stories.

      https://www.davisvanguard.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Screen-Shot-2020-03-04-at-2.34.28-PM.png

        1. Matt Williams

          My pleasure Hiram.  It is important to know where successes lie and where shortfalls lurk.

          If I were part of the Measure G team, I never would have proactively anticipated a Mace Mess Backlash, but with 20/20 hindsight it appears that is what we have.  A Cannery backlash to the wholly unnecessary CFD there, was much easier to predict.

      1. Dave Hart

        A careful reading of my comment does not place all the blame on El Macero and Willowbank, rather my comment acknowledged there were No votes throughout Davis, but El Macero, Willowbank and the unincorporated areas voted majority No.  That doesn’t really happen anywhere else in the DJUSD boundary with the exception of the one district that I believe is the trailer or mobile home park off Research Drive based on the map.  Not very many votes there, but people who probably feel alienated from Davis as well.  Alienation on the ends of the income scale.

      2. Dave Hart

        Matt, that precinct 100134 that I identified as the mobile home park is the one you identified as “Below Road 29 and West of F Street”.  It seems to be both of those.  That is one whacky precinct.  Where did they vote?

  3. Bill Marshall

    Not sure how correct this is, but my understanding is that the priorities for processing, moving forward:  VMB ballots will be # 1; then Conditional Ballots; then Provisional.  Same day registration has complicated the process.  But, it should still come up with appropriate results.  In my precinct we had ~ 10 same day registrations, from folk have moved to Davis in the last few weeks to 3 months… from other Counties.

    Updates on the #’s will not be quick, as in daily (need to verify signatures, etc.), but will probably happen in next 1-2 weeks, and will definitely be done during the ‘canvass’ process.  Correctly tabulating ballots, with all appropriate safeguards for integrity of the process, cannot be done in 1-2 days…

    By then (end of canvass), sure looks like there will be only two Demo prez candidates for next primary… Bloomberg out, Warren seriously considering more who to she should support, than staying in, Gabbard still in, but I’d need better than 10,000 to 1 odds to bet on her to get nomination… 10,000,000 to 1 to become next President… anyone want to bet $1 @ that level? Am thinking, not.

  4. Richard McCann

    For some reason, education-related measures had difficulty across the state. The Prop 13 state bond issue went down in flames and the Los Rios District bond issue is failing.

    1. Alan Miller

      I’m guessing that small middle draw of voters who don’t automatically vote “no more taxes” or “it’s for the children” actually got fed up with repeated monies and promises leading to an ever worsening educational system.  Goose, Egg, Golden, mix & match with goose’s life being threatened to form a metaphor.

      1. Bill Marshall

        And, perhaps a small group who had problems, philosophically, with the new “exemption”… which smelled like a gratuitous ploy to gain more Yes votes… yet it still may pass… but likely to be a “squeaker”, if it does pass…  ain’t going to be a 70% yes… might make it to ~ 66.7%, or a tad more…

        1. Bill Marshall

          We’ll never know about the ‘wisdom’ of the proposed new exemption… I thought it was bad precedent, and a gratuitous ploy (wait, I used that term before)… some DJUSD employees (voting in DJUSD boundaries) may or may not have had any worries one way or the other… so, they might ‘save’ <$200/yr vs what they stand to gain much more)…

          But we’ll never know… there is no breakdown of how the other exemption groups might have voted, one way or the other, either…

          Note that in all areas of the City, and some areas of the County, the yes was higher than the no… but not yet (awaiting the canvass) a high enough %-age of yes… think it was another thread where someone said 2/3 was too onerous… I agree… I believe it should be 60% (3/5)… which is what it takes to pass an ordinance… but Paul Gann, and others, insisted on 2/3… yet Paul Gann hated government, and taxes, unless it served his interests… he wrote in the loophole to protect commercial properties from being re-assessed, unless there was at least a 50% change in ownership, at any given time… so a 20% change, each year, would not trigger a reassessment (100% in 5 years).  He owned/controlled/was invested in, a lot of Commercial property.  That is why the concept of ‘split roll’ comes up from time to time…

          Yet, at the end of the day, or end of the canvass, it may pass… but looks like it will be a ‘squeaker’… one way or the other… and “why” will be speculation, not demonstrable ‘fact’

    2. Hiram Jackson

      I will be interested to see what things look like after late VBM ballots get counted.  I think many VBM Dems waited to the last minute to submit their ballots because of uncertainty over whom to vote for as  presidential candidate.  Maybe ultimately it doesn’t make a difference but it’s an interesting question for the moment while we wait for the counts.

      1. Bill Marshall

        I think many VBM Dems waited to the last minute to submit their ballots because of uncertainty over whom to vote for as  presidential candidate. 

        You are partly right… the smart ones did…

        But based on conversations of voters in my precinct, and my own experience, you leave out the fastest growing ‘party’ in Davis, and CA… the NPP’s… and yes, am one of them.

        Many NPP, particularly VBM, either surrendered their NP ballots to vote the Democratic ballot, or just asked for the Demo ballot.  Republicans have ignored the NPP folk, and Democrats may well learn the dangers of that.  At least the Dems allow NPP’s to “cross-over”… the Republicans do not…

        The smart folk waited until after the SC primary results, and the subsequent suspension of campaigns, so they didn’t ‘waste a vote’… now, there is another suspension, and a likely one in the not so distant future.

        So, Hiram may be right about how VBM/Conditional/Provisional votes come in… not just Demos, but NPP’s… tend to be more ‘liberal’… we’ll see in the next week or two…

        That said, everyone got the same ballot, as to Measure G….

  5. Keith Olsen

    I don’t think the 2/3’s requirement for parcel taxes is ridiculous at all.  When you consider that seniors, apartment renters, people with disabilities, people in affordable housing and now DJUSD employees all don’t have to pay the tax the scale is heavily weighted on the yes side against homeowners, the people who actually have to pay the tax.  Without the 2/3’s threshold homeowners would be like an ATM machine to the school district and the city.

    1. David Greenwald

      The problem you get is that this measure will probably get 65.9 percent of the vote, which means only 34 percent of the voters oppose it and yet they end up getting their way. That’s a high threshold.

      1. Keith Olsen

        It’s the only safeguard that homeowners have from getting totally tapped out by the system.  Since every DJUSD parcel tax has passed until now, and this one is still possible, maybe homeowners are finally saying enough is enough.  After all, they’re the ones who actually have to pay.

        1. Keith Olsen

          Hey, good to hear from you too Matt.  I decided to come back here because David kicked me off his Vanguard FB page saying that I don’t post intelligent stuff and that I don’t add to the conversation.  So I decided to share my moronic posts here instead.

          Barack Palin

        2. Keith Olsen

          “So the only safeguard is to violate one-person, one-vote”

          I don’t think homeowners would have a problem with one person, one vote if everyone had skin in the game.  I think you know yourself that parcel taxes are unfair and the only thing that levels the field to a degree is the 2/3’s threshold.

        3. Alan Miller

          Barack Palin

          OMG!  OMG!  OMG!   My favorite commenter is back.

          God, it’s been dreary around here since you wisely decided it was better anonymous than sorry.  Um, well, sorry . . .

          I decided to come back here because David kicked me off his Vanguard FB page saying that I don’t post intelligent stuff and that I don’t adds to the conversation.

          No problem, I’m here because I don’t think the Vanguard posts intelligent stuff nor adds to the conversation.

          Welcome back, and I hope you’ll bring back your old avatar!

           

        4. Keith Olsen

          Hi Alan, I’ve been reading the V since my hiatus and always enjoy your comments the most.  I love your humor even if others, cough, cough, often don’t get it.  I’m back but I don’t post intelligent stuff and won’t add to the conversation but I’ll be sarcastic as all Hell.

        5. Alan Miller

          Hi Alan, I’ve been reading the V since my hiatus and always enjoy your comments the most.  I love your humor even if others, cough, cough, often don’t get it.

          Actually, you may be enjoying your own humor, as I’ve been channeling the BP energy about 30%, and Frankly about 10%.  In the absence of a non-uber-progressive voice in this space, I’ve steered my comments a bit more in the direction of the absent alternative-voice bhuddas than I actually am, so as to keep the place from becoming a shuffleboard court of progressive ricochets.

          I don’t post intelligent stuff and won’t add to the conversation

          There’s not a lot of actual intelligence in this space or in Davis in general, so I am not concerned.

          but I’ll be sarcastic as all Hell.

          Most looking forward to the sunrise first-out-the-door BP firecracker-brick that gets the conversation started.  Better than a cup of coffee (and that’s saying a lot, coming from me).

        6. Keith Olsen

          Most looking forward to the sunrise first-out-the-door BP firecracker-brick that gets the conversation started.  Better than a cup of coffee (and that’s saying a lot, coming from me).

          Funny thing about that Alan, there are a couple of commenters on here that used to complain that I started the conversation in the morning.  One even suggested that David hold his articles and post them later in the day.

        7. Alan Miller

          Some have forgotten (or never known) that one of the most valuable things to have in life is a good adversary.  Keeps you honest, keeps you strong.  If everyone one talks to believes exactly what one believes, one starts to think one is right about everything – and in extreme cases may even start to think they are:  The One.

      2. Bill Marshall

        David… you have a problem protecting the minority from the ‘tyranny of the majority’?

        Think at least twice before answering… has constitutional, other implications…

        1. David Greenwald

          Do I have a problem protecting the minority from the tyranny of the majority? No. We have all sorts of institutions and policies. Constitutional protections. Courts. Separation of powers.

          Do I have a problem protecting the political minority in a vote by changing the vote threshold? Yes.

    1. David Greenwald

      That was my estimate, in part based on the difference between 2016 vote totals and 2020 so far. But the math is going to be hard to change the outcome.

      1. Bill Marshall

        But the math is going to be hard to change the outcome.

        Lib Arts majors!

        The outcome will not change… that ship has sailed… what we think we know about the outcome may change.

        Once a vote is taken, no room for theories, or philosophical projections… it is what it is…

        Ignore

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