Voters decide fate of gas tax, rent control in California

A woman prepares to vote at Mountainview Elementary School in the 2018 election. Dan Watson/The Signal

Alongside the rest of the state, Santa Clarita voters have decided on 11 statewide propositions in this year’s midterm elections that range from dialysis treatment cost controls to reconsidering daylight savings time.

With traffic congestion and housing among the most talked-about topics in the Santa Clarita Valley, two November ballot initiatives have garnered significant attention: Prop. 6 and 10.

This is what votes cast by press time depicted:  

Prop. 6:

At 60.43 percent of the vote, voters said “no” to the proposal to repeal last year’s gas and car tax increase, according to Secretary of State tallies as of 10:50 p.m.

This means Prop. 6 would kill a 12-cent-per-gallon tax, a 20-cent-per-gallon increase on diesel fuel and new vehicle registration fees, which make up Senate Bill 1.

With a “no” vote in the lead, the state Legislature would continue to impose the fuel taxes and vehicle fees through a two-thirds majority of each chamber and will not require voter approval.

If Prop. 6 passed, a report by the Office of the Chief Administrative Officer showed L.A. County could lose more than $1 billion in funding for transportation projects this fiscal year.

Prop 10:

Votes showed opposition for local governments from adopting rent control on any rental housing in the state, which would keep the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act in place.

By 11 p.m. the “no” vote had tallied 56.04 percent with nearly 17 percent of the precincts reporting.

This means counties and cities would not be allowed to regulate how much landlords can charge tenants for housing. City ordinances would not be able to prevent a fair return for landlords as well.  

Prop. 10 had one of the most expensive campaigns in this election cycle, with supporters and opponents contributing more than $100 million.

To keep up with the housing demand, data from the California Department of Housing and Community Development found that the state needs 180,000 new homes every year.

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