Supporting Points on Democratic Party Recommendations – 2018 Propositions from a Rural Perspective, by Isaac Wright, FSSG
PROP 1 / 2 (Vote Yes)
Our rural communities have fewer property rental options and more limited options to mortgage credit as bank consolidation continues, making affordable housing a key issue. Prop 1 and Prop 2 will provide crucial support rural California without raising taxes.
Prop 1 creates affordable housing for vets, working California families, seniors, the disabled, and the homeless – without raising taxes. Many Californians are spending more than 30% of their incomes, some as much as 50% of their incomes, on rent and mortgages. Escalating housing prices create a disproportionate burden on our rural communities where homeownership rates are generally higher but where rural Americans make 25-cents less on the dollar than those in urban centers. Voting yes on Prop 1 is critical to the strength of rural California communities.
Rising housing expenses are particularly hard on rural California communities. Rural Americans making $50,000—$70,000 annually spend an average of 33% of their income on housing. Those rural Americans earning $30,000 or less spend an average of 40% of their income on housing.
Prop 2 delivers housing with mental health services to alleviate chronic homelessness. Without raising taxes, Prop 2 breaks the cycle of homelessness related to mental illness that depresses our communities and local economies. Our rural communities need this support to deal with the mental health crisis in our state. Too many disparities face rural communities putting them at a disadvantage accessing mental health care services.
PROP 4 (Vote Yes)
Prop 4 provides specialized care for 2 million seriously ill or injured California children – kids suffering from life-threatening illnesses such as leukemia, sickle cell anemia, cancer, and more – all without raising taxes. Our state’s 13 regional children’s hospitals provide this care to rural and urban kids alike – at no charge to their families. Supporting Prop 4 is supporting the future of our community. The average American rural household of two spends as much as 20% of their income on health care and, in many cases, more than their urban counterparts. Providing care for our youngest and most vulnerable Californians is a moral imperative for our state.
PROP 5 (Vote No)
Prop 5 will take up to $2 billion from schools and local services to give an advantage to wealthy property owners. This prop will tilt the scale in favor of wealthy property owners at the expense of our rural schools, police forces, and firefighters. At a time when wildfires are plaguing our rural communities, we should be looking at ways to invest in our firefighters and their resources, not ways to take away from them.
PROP 6 (Vote No)
California rural communities pay a particularly high price for the lack of maintenance of our infrastructure. Safe roads and bridges connect our communities and our economy. Prop 6 would devastate bridge and road safety by eliminating more than 6,500 projects currently underway.
For example, Prop 6 would halt $117.9 million in road safety and maintenance in Shasta County alone, including revamping the Pit River Bridge Overhead on I-5, replace Moody Creek Bridge, and continuing the pavement preservation project improving 21 miles of SR-299 near the town of Shasta. Visit NoProp6.com to see the local impact in your area.
Rural California depends on reliable roads and bridges to connect our communities to the larger economy.
PROP 8 (Vote Yes)
Our rural communities have long faced challenges accessing health care. Even with dialysis clinics across the state, rural Californians deserve better care when at the dialysis facilities. We must demand dialysis clinics in California improve patient care, update equipment and provide safe and clean facilities for all our people. This propis of great importance to rural communities where in-person follow-up care may be a greater challenge should there be complications from the poor conditions at a dialysis facility.
PROP 10 (Vote Yes)
Prop 10 allows our local communities to limit skyrocketing rents. This local control is critical for our rural communities to determine their own futures as thriving localities where people can afford to live, work, and raise families. Supporting Prop 10 is of greatest importance in rural California since on average rural communities have less rental housing available (28%) compared to the rest of the country (35%).
PROP 11 (Vote No)
Prop 11 is an initiative pushed by a single company to deny having to pay back its workers what they earned. Emergency Medical Service workers owed back pay for overtime efforts would be denied it if Prop 11 passes. Stopping Prop 11 is of grave importance to rural California since rural communities across the country already face greater challenges to accessing medical care and rural Americans make 25-cents less on the dollar than their urban counterparts. Stand up for EMS workers – especially rural EMS workers – and say “no” to Prop 11.
PROP 12 (Vote Yes)
Prop 12 will improve space requirements in California for veal calves, mother pigs, and egg-laying hens so California is setting standards for California small farms, ranches, and grow-houses rather than out-of-state corporations. Producing healthier livestock produces higher quality food for consumers.