Though I support the concept of a tax for public safety, I do not support this tax.
Unfortunately this is a good idea gone bad. If passed, the revenue becomes discretionary as “a locally controlled source of funds for essential services.” The city’s website explains how this money will be used as “the city’s intent to allocate.” The key words in both of these quotes being “locally controlled” and “intent.” Neither statement is specific about how the funds will be spent.
We can do better than this and we should. It would be wise to defeat Measure X and replace it with a restricted fund initiative to be voted on next year. We need this as long as the money goes directly to public safety and has a very short sunset (two years vs. six years of unrestricted spending).
Our first responders and citizens deserve an initiative that addresses our safety issues specifically. Measure X does not have any specific direction other than to “address crime, gangs, drugs ... and expanding programs to attract new businesses and create jobs.”