Official Ballot Argument Supporting Measure N
FIX OUR STREETS – OR LOWER OUR TAXES!
Concerned about Oxnard City Hall putting off street maintenance until it costs even more money to fix them?
Annoyed that Camarillo and Thousand Oaks can somehow repair their streets – with a significantly lower sales tax rate than Oxnard?
If yes, join more than 12,000 local residents who signed our petition – and vote Yes on Measure N!
The Oxnard City Council sued to keep Measure N off the ballot – spending taxpayer money to take away your right to vote. The Ventura County Superior Court responded – ordering the Oxnard City Council to follow the law and place Measure N on the ballot – restoring your right to vote for this good government measure.
Yes on Measure N:
- Instructs the Oxnard City Council they can no longer take our tax dollars for granted and demands better stewardship of the money we entrust with them.
- Makes clear that Oxnard City Hall must deliver the “enhanced services” they promised in exchange for adopting their most recent half-cent sales tax increase.
- Eliminates that half-cent sales tax if Oxnard’s street conditions remain inadequate, but allows the Oxnard City Council to extend that tax if street conditions markedly improve. Oxnard City Hall only gets paid if it does the work – and makes our streets and alleys a priority.
- Tells City officials that if they can’t perform a task as basic as fixing streets, they haven’t earned the extra money they’re charging us.
- Requires keeping streets at optimal levels, so that the long-term cost of road maintenance can go down. The money saved could then be used for youth programs, senior services and mental health programs to address homelessness.
The Oxnard City Council has been diverting funds from basic services, and using them to pay ever higher salary and pension costs.
Can we at least have fewer potholes?
Vote YES on Measure N.
President, Moving Oxnard Forward
Chair, Inter-Neighborhood Council Organization (INCO)
Tom Rey Garcia
Downtown Oxnard Business Owner - Tomas Cafe
Former Oxnard Planning Commissioner
Jo Ann Olivares
Perhaps the one thing worse than paying higher taxes is having so little to show for it.
In 2008, the City Council asked voters to raise the sales tax by a half-cent for each dollar we spend.
We were told this was needed to “to protect, maintain, and enhance vital city services,” such as “increasing street paving and sidewalk/pothole repair to improve traffic flow.”
Based on the language of the measure and the marketing campaign promoting it, we the voters agreed to adopt Measure O, and made Oxnard’s sales tax rate the highest in the county.
This extra tax generates in excess of $13 million each year at great cost to poor and middle-class families.
Are we getting our money’s worth? Not if the condition of our roads is any indication.
Our streets, sidewalks and alleys are in terrible condition. Not only have City leaders broken their promise to the voters, but their refusal to properly maintain city streets is a failure of their responsibilities as stewards of our tax dollars.
Oxnard's own Public Works Department has on numerous occasions told the city council that it is FAR less expensive to keep a road in good condition than to repair it once it has deteriorated. The long-term impact of this neglect of our streets is to deprive residents of other vital city services—such as public safety.
Another consequence of our poorly maintained streets is the negative impact it has on Oxnard’s ability to attract businesses and jobs.
Poorly maintained streets and sidewalks jeopardize the safety of children and senior citizens and significantly increase the danger of accidents for Oxnard motorists.
Other cities in Ventura County – which don’t charge an extra sales tax – are managing to maintain their roads. Why doesn’t Oxnard?
It’s time to tell the City Council that they cannot collect the extra tax if they don’t fix the roads.
Think of it this way. If you get a paycheck, it’s because you perform a valuable service. You got paid because you earned the money by doing work.
Now it's time to make City Hall earn its paycheck.
Measure N ("The Keeping the Promise for Oxnard Streets Act") requires the City of Oxnard to improve and then maintain our city streets in good condition – or else they will no longer have the legal authority to collect their extra sales tax.
Measure N Frequently Asked Questions
1) What does Measure N do?
Streets and alleys are measured by what's known as a Pavement Condition Index (PCI), a numerical index between 0 and 100 used to indicate the general condition of pavement. This standard is widely used in transportation civil engineering, and the surveying processes and calculation methods used have been standardized by ASTM International.
Prior to the adoption of Measure O, the City's 0.5% sales tax increase adopted by voters in 2008, Oxnard had a PCI score of 61 for its network of streets and alleys. Unfortunately, Oxnard’s PCI has not seen meaningful improvement since the tax increase, and residents continue to endure poorly maintained streets and alleys, some of which have been neglected for years.
Measure O is currently scheduled to expire on March 31, 2029. Measure N gives the City eight years to gradually improve road conditions to optimal levels. If the City refuses to do so, Measure O's tax will sunset early.
Unless an outside civil engineering consultant with expertise in developing and updating pavement management systems finds that the Pavement Condition Index of the city-owned street and alley network is:
- at least 65 on or before September 30, 2022, Measure O will sunset March 31, 2023;
- at least 70 on or before September 30, 2024, Measure O will sunset March 31, 2025;
- at least 75 on or before September 30, 2026, Measure O will sunset March 31, 2027; and
- at least 80 on or before September 30, 2028, Measure O will sunset March 31, 2029.
If the City is able to maintain a score of 80, the City Council is authorized to extend the sales tax for five-year periods.
2) Why did you target a PCI score of 80?
Because the City's own staff reports reveal that the long-term cost of maintaining roads is lowest at that score.
3) Won't it cost a lot of money to fix the roads?
When it comes to roads, our choice is either "pay me now" or "pay me a whole lot more later." City Hall refuses to spend enough resources to even maintain roads in their current poor condition. They prefer to use the money to pay themselves. That's why we have some of the worst roads in Ventura County.
4) Does Measure N require that all of Measure O's funds be spent on streets?
It doesn't require that any Measure O money be spent on streets. It simply states that if the City does not improve and maintain the streets it will no longer be authorized to collect the extra sales tax money. Of California's 482 cities, 262 of them do not have an extra sales tax. They do not spend their Measure O money on streets because they don't have a Measure O sales tax. Instead, they provide their residents better streets using their general fund.
5) Where can I see the text of the Measure?
Paid for by Starr Coalition for Moving Oxnard Forward, a committee opposing Measure E; supporting Measures F, L, M and N.
2130 Posada Drive, Oxnard, CA 93030 ID# 1379154