June 7 Primary: Races to Watch

Hillary, Trump and Bernie aren’t the only ones worth keeping an eye on Tuesday. There are more than 160 ballot initiatives and scores of politicians facing off across California during the June 7 primary. Here are just a few worth mentioning:

The minimum wage wars are in full swing in San Diego. A wage increase ordinance vetoed by the mayor in 2014 could soon make a comeback. If Measure I passes, the city’s minimum wage would jump to $11.50 per hour by January 2017. It also provides for up to 5 earned sick days for most employees.

On the San Diego City Council, five of the nine seats are up for grabs and Mayor Kevin Faulconer is seeking his first full term. There is also a race on for the District 3 county supervisor seat, with embattled incumbent Dave Roberts facing a challenge from Escondido Mayor Sam Abed and Encinitas Mayor Kristin Gaspar.

Other supervisor races in the Southland to watch include Los Angeles’ and Riverside's. In L.A., the Board’s two lone Republicans, Michael Antonovich and Don Knabe, are being pushed out by term limits. In Riverside, three candidates have stepped up to challenge District 3 Supervisor and Gov. Jerry Brown appointee Chuck Washington.

Now let’s hop over to the Bay Area, where residents will be asked to protect and restore the San Francisco Bay through a $12 per year parcel tax (Measure AA). The measure would affect the nine counties surrounding the San Francisco Bay. Meanwhile, exorbitant rents and housing prices continue to be a hot button issue in San Francisco. Proposition C would attempt to mitigate the problem by requiring landlords to set aside 25% of units in new complexes for low-income residents—more than double the current requirement of 12%.

Concerns over police conduct are also taking front and center on the ballot there. In the wake of multiple police shootings and the forced resignation of the city’s police chief, Proposition D would require San Francisco’s civilian police review agency to investigate every time there is a police-involved shooting.

Now for marijuana, which continues to be all the rage ahead of a probable statewide ballot measure for full legalization in the fall:

Both Nevada County and Yuba County have controversial cultivation measures on their ballots Tuesday. The former would double down on a previous ban on outdoor marijuana growing; the latter would overturn an outdoor cultivation ban. In San Jose, voters will decide whether to allow cannabis clubs and dispensaries to operate in parts of the city where they’re currently prohibited. But here’s the kicker: The measure’s sponsor recently told voters not to vote for it, saying it’s no longer necessary or even a good idea.

Also on the herbal front are three cities considering marijuana business tax measures: Alturas, Sacramento and Davis.

$6 million in school construction bonds are at stake Tuesday as well, along with a push to repeal a city tax on electricity, water and gas rates in Glendale. You can learn more about those here.

Finally, for a run-down of the top legislative races to watch, click here.


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