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PORT HUENEME | West Ventura County Focus

Meeting to Address 3 Ballot Measures

November 01, 1996|NICK GREEN

No organized opposition against the three local ballot measures in Port Hueneme has translated into little publicity for them, something two council members hope to change Saturday.

Jon Sharkey and Toni Young will hold a discussion on measures A, B and C at 9 a.m. at the Orvene S. Carpenter Community Center, 550 Park Ave.

Measure A would approve a city charter. Measures B and C would approve an existing utility tax.

"I've been going door to door on these issues and I've heard people comment, 'Gee, I haven't heard anything about these issues,' " Sharkey said.

The lack of opposition meant Sharkey could not find anyone willing to publicly argue against the measures on Saturday.

But an unsigned flier is making the rounds alleging Measure A would abridge property owners' Proposition 13 rights.

That charge is false, Sharkey said, adding that Proposition 13 is part of the state Constitution and Port Hueneme cannot ignore the law if the measure is approved.

The ballot argument in favor of Measure A notes passage would provide greater control over local affairs and prevent state raids on the municipal treasury, raids that the argument says have resulted in recurring city budget crises. Moreover, residents will have more political power, said Sharkey.

Measures B and C would preserve a 4% utility tax the council enacted in 1994 and used largely to fund the municipal Police Department. The city put the pair on the ballot because recent court decisions have thrown into doubt the legality of taxes instituted without a vote of the electorate.

One measure endorses the tax retroactively, the other takes effect once the results are made official.

"This is a straight-up vote for the voters to determine whether they want to keep the Port Hueneme Police Department as an independent agency," Sharkey said.

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