After weeks of teetering on the edge, the final election results show Measure A, an indefinite extension of the sales tax, winning by 16 votes.
The results are scheduled to be certified today.
According to a county clerk spokesman, there is no specific amount of votes that would trigger a recount for an election. The California Elections Code allows that a recount can be called by the county “if there is reasonable cause to believe ballots have been miscounted.”
Otherwise, in order to get a recount, a person or group of people must request it and pay for it within five days of the certification of the election results. According to the Long Beach City Clerk’s office, it would cost an estimated $63,000 to $84,000.
Measure A was originally approved by voters in 2016 under the assumption that it would be phased out after 10 years. The 1% increase to the city’s sales tax, which put Long Beach at the state maximum, was sold as a way to address a backlog of infrastructure projects and maintenance as well as bolstering staffing levels of the city’s first responders.
It was set to sunset in January 2027.
However, last year the City Council voted to place the measure back on the ballot, this time asking Long Beach voters to extend it indefinitely. The rationale used by civic leaders and Mayor Robert Garcia, who served as the face of the campaign, was that if the city did not extend Measure A it would likely be replaced by another county or regional tax.
Garcia said in a statement Friday that the city is “incredibly grateful to all who voted.”
“Now that the results are final and certified, I want to thank Long Beach voters for passing both Measures A & B,” he said, referring to the sales tax and the transient occupancy tax increase, Measure B, which also passed. “These measures will be critical in the years ahead to support our police officers, firefighters, and the arts and tourism.”
Other local races
The results for the city council elections remain relatively the same, with Robert Fox and Cindy Allen moving on to a District 2 runoff, Suely Saro and incumbent Dee Andrews facing off in a District 6 runoff and Tunua Thrash-Ntuk and incumbent Al Austin vying for the District 8 seat in November.
Tonia Reyes-Uranga and Erik Miller will face each other in a run-off for the District 2 seat on the Long Beach Unified School District Board of Education.
Doug Otto won the District 4 LBUSD seat with 51% of the vote.
Measure B passed with 59% of the vote.