Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Shasta County Grand Jury issues statement in regards to the City of Anderson 2014 Measures A and B

An investigation by the 2017-2018 Shasta County Grand Jury into the City of Anderson’s Measure A (a sales tax increase), and Measure B (a tax spending advisory), showed the City of Anderson’s City Council has fulfilled its promise to spend 50% of the tax revenues generated from Measure A on the Police Department. The Grand Jury decided to study this issue in order to hold government accountable and inform citizens whether their Measure B advisory vote was being followed.
The Grand Jury found the elected officials of the City of Anderson had honored the voters’advisory measure by spending over 50% of sales tax dollars on the Police Department. They also designated additional tax monies to support parks, to increase the General Fund Reserves and to support other general City services. The Grand Jury commends the City of Anderson’s elected officials for keeping the promise they made to the voters.
This investigative report provides Shasta County citizens with information as to how the City officials have used the funds in a way that reflects accountability, transparency, and the promise made.
The Shasta County Grand Jury (Grand Jury) investigated the City of Anderson (Anderson) to determine whether the funds generated from Measure A have been allocated as specified in Measure B. Measure A was a one-half cent sales tax for essential general City services. As stated in the argument in favor of Measure A, “Measure A is intended to prevent significant cuts to general City services…this sales tax would be a ’general tax’ meaning that revenues raised from the tax would go into the City’s general fund to fund any lawful City program, improvement, or service”. The Anderson City Council (City Council) recognized that in order for Measure A to pass, the City voters needed assurance that the sales tax collected from Measure A would be expended as promised. Therefore, a spending advisory was placed on the ballot. Measure B advised that 50 percent of the sales tax dollars collected would be expended on the Anderson Police Department (APD) and the remainder would be used to “support parks, code enforcement, restore general fund reserves, and on other general city services.” This spending advisory measure is an opinion expressed by the voters and not a legally binding decision.
In June of 2014, both Measures A and B successfully passed. Those ballot results are shown in Table A (below).
TABLE A: Election Results for Measures A and B, June 10, 2014
Measure A — YES = 638 votes or 53% NO = 558 votes or 47%
Measure B — YES = 776 votes or 66.72%  NO = 387 votes or 33.28%
Measure A tax passed by a 6% margin, while Measure B advisory passed by a 34% margin, showing strong support for Measure A money being used primarily for the APD.
May 15, 2018
East Valley Times
By Judy LaRussa

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