Council Joins Blumenfield Effort to Reform Infrastructure Funding

Blumenfield ballot initiative would stimulate local economies and create jobs in California by lowering the threshold needed to pass local infrastructure bond measures.

LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles City Council today approved City Councilmember Bob Blumenfield’s resolution to support passage of ACA 8, a critically needed change to facilitate infrastructure development, which is currently working its way through the California State Senate.

ACA 8, which was authored by Councilmember Blumenfield during his time in the California State Legislature, passed the Assembly with a 2/3 majority on Blumenfield’s penultimate day as an Assemblymember. If passed by the Senate, it would place a measure on the November 2014 ballot to reduce the threshold for passage of local infrastructure bond measures to 55% from the current two-thirds, the same threshold that currently applies to school bond measures.

“Los Angeles’s infrastructure simply does not make the grade,” said Blumenfield. “Each dollar invested in infrastructure creates a seven dollar return to our economy and every $1 billion invested creates 18,000 California jobs and helps ensure our state’s competiveness. Time and again, however, infrastructure bonds have failed at the ballot box with overwhelming majorities of the electorate, while still failing to reach the two-thirds threshold,” Continued Blumenfield.

In 2012, the Los Angeles County Infrastructure Report awarded Los AngelesCounty an overall “C” grade. Much of California’s infrastructure was designed and built over 40 years ago to accommodate a population of 25 million. California’s current population of 38 million is expected to rise to 60 million by 2050.

Since 2002, 33 local bond measures throughout the state have received more than 55% of the vote, but failed at the ballot box because they fell slightly short of the 2/3 threshold.

“ACA 8 will free local communities to determine for themselves the level at which they wish to invest in infrastructure projects and enhance their quality of life,” Blumenfield concluded.

Also speaking in favor of the proposal were representatives from a unique coalition of business and labor groups supporting ACA 8.

“The Chamber has always been a strong advocate for infrastructure investment. ACA 8 will create jobs that will get to work in maintaining and expanding the infrastructure system we need to compete in the 21st century,” said Jessica Duboff, Director of Public Policy at the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce.

Speaking on behalf of the Los Angeles/Orange County Building Trades Council, Gary Cook, Business Manager at Plumbers Local 78, said, “ACA 8 is good politics and good policy. New infrastructure projects that will be made possible through the passage of ACA 8 will bring badly needed jobs back to Los Angeles. We strongly support this resolution.”

With today’s vote, the City of Los Angeles joins with the Chamber and the Building Trades as well as the Los Angeles Police Protective League, the Los Angeles County Business Federation, the Los Angeles Business Council and other groups urging passage of ACA 8.

While in the Legislature, Blumenfield authored more than 50 bills which are now law. Legislation put forward by Blumenfield has since stabilized the budget, improved the environment, and increased access to technology in our schools. Blumenfield’s record of accomplishment serves as the foundation for his ongoing efforts to improve quality of life in the San Fernando Valley and across Los Angeles.

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