Poll: Long Beach Divided On Local Ballot Measures, Pot Tax and Vet Proposition Poised to Pass

9:45am | Long Beach voters are divided on the four local measures that will appear on the November 2, 2010 ballot according to our new LBPOST.com/Probolsky Research poll among likely Long Beach voters. The poll found that both Measure GG, the reorganization of the Civil Service Commission and Measure D, relating to the Harbor Department and Oil Properties are not popular among Long Beach voters. Measure B, the marijuana tax, and Measure C the veterans hiring preference both have wide support among voters.
 
“Voters seem to have made their minds up on Measure B and C,” explained Adam Probolsky, poll director and Chairman and CEO of Probolsky Research. “Measure GG and D are clearly not popular among Long Beach voters. But, the percentage of undecided voters on both measures says that many voters are still searching for information on the measures,” Probolsky continued.
 
The high undecided numbers on both Measure GG and D could be related to the limited media coverage and campaign information available for both measures.  In the last week, media coverage has intensified and numbers could begin to shift.
 
Measure GG
 
Measure GG will amend the Long Beach City Charter to transfer certain powers from the Civil Service Commission to the City Manager including examination and certification for employment, classification creation, maintenance of eligibility lists, and the appointment and management of a professional staff. The poll found that 30.8% support the measure, 42.5% oppose the measure with 28.6% undecided. 
 
Opponents of Measure GG argue that the Civil Service Commission’s role in upholding the merit system will be diminished, if not all together eliminated, when it comes to the hiring, promoting and retention of City employees. Proponents of Measure GG state that the passage of the measure will allow the City of Long Beach to merge two similar City departments which will save the Long Beach taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars each year. By merging the two departments it will eliminate duplication and cut excess bureaucracy in City’s hiring system and save approximately $400,000 each year
 
Measure GG was proposed by Long Beach City Manager Pat West and is being supported by Long Beach City Auditor Laura Doud.  Those in opposition include former Vice-Mayor Doris Topsy-Elvord and retired Police Commander Charles Parks.
 
Measure B
 
California voters will consider Proposition 19 on the November 2 statewide ballot which seeks to legalize marijuana-related activities, allows local governments to regulate these activities, permits local governments to impose and collect marijuana-related fees and taxes, and authorizes various criminal and civil penalties. The Long Beach City Council placed Measure B on the ballot which if approved will impose a 15% tax on recreational marijuana businesses if legalized by Proposition 19 and a $25 tax on cultivation sites per square foot. The poll found that Likely Long Beach voters support Measure B 67.1% and oppose it by 24.6%.
 
The poll on Measure B also found:
 
- More men vote yes (71.9%) than women (62.8%). 
- 76.2% of those aged 18-34 and 77.1% of those aged 35-54 vote yes, while this proportion drops to 56.3% of those aged 55-64.
- More men aged 18-54 vote yes (77.9%) than those aged 55+ (67.1%). 
- More women aged 18-54 vote yes (75.9%) than those aged 55+ (50.6%). 
 
Measure C
 
Measure C is a Long Beach Charter Amendment that if approved will increase the credits given to disabled veterans in the hiring process with the City.  It also lowers the disability threshold so that more veterans wounded in service receive the hiring preference.
 
65.2% of likely Long Beach voters support Measure C and 19.4% oppose the measure. The poll also found that 71.8% of those aged 65+ vote yes.
 
Councilmember Robert Garcia proposed Measure C, and the measure is being supported by USVETS – Long Beach.
 
Measure D
 
Measure D is the most divided proposition among Long Beach voters. The measure, if approved, will amend the Long Beach City Charter by changing the formula from 10% of net income to 5% of gross operating revenues in order to clarify the formula for the transfer of funds from Harbor Department revenues to the Tidelands Operating Fund, and clarify that the management of the City’s oil properties and operations will be under the exclusive control of the City Council. 27.7% of likely Long Beach voters support Measure D and 36.6% oppose with over 35.7% of voters undecided.  
 
The poll on Measure D also found that more Republicans (41.8%) and Democratic voters (35.5%) vote no than DTS voters (28.9%). More Republicans men vote no (48.9%) than Republican women (35.8%). And, more Democratic men vote yes (37.8%) than Democratic women (36.8% - a plurality – vote no).
 
Supporting Measure D is Mayor Bob Foster, City Auditor Laura Doud and Councilmember Gary DeLong.

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Publisher’s Note: In a February 2010 message to our readers we highlighted our role as a local leader in the changing world of news delivery. We remain committed to providing new ways for you to obtain the information you want. This week we launched our first comprehensive research poll in partnership with Probolsky Research and we encourage you to form an opinion and debate the results in the comments section below.
  

About the LBPOST.com/Probolsky Research Poll

Click here for the detailed polling results.

LBPOST.com is a daily, online media publication providing news, politics, business, life and sports coverage on issues impacting our city. Newport Beach-based Probolsky Research specializes in opinion research, with government, corporate and political practice areas. The poll was conducted October 6 – October 7, 2010 with 325 likely Long Beach voters with a +/- 5.4 margin of error. Likely November 2010 Long Beach voters included those who voted in any of the November 2008, May 2009, June 2010 elections and voted at least in three of the November 2006, February 2008, June 2008, November 2008, May 2009 and June 2010 elections or if they registered after February 2008 and voted in any of the June 2008, May 2009, and June 2010 elections or registered after November 2008 and voted in either the May 2009 or June 2010 elections or registered after June 2010.

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