CalNonprofits Articles

CalNonprofits board announces positions on ballot propositions

“‘Advocate for sufficient public investment in our communities,’ is the very first principle in our Policy Framework,” comments CalNonprofits Policy Chair Cindy Duenas. “This election we are focusing our attention on two propositions that set important precedents for public funding.”

Proposition 2: No Place Like Home Act of 2018 

CalNonprofits position: VOTE YES

In 2004, seeing a desperate need to fund mental health services, California voters approved the Mental Health Services Act (MHSA) (Prop 63). Nicknamed the “Millionaire’s Tax,” this law added 1% in taxes on incomes of $1 million or greater per year, generating $1.5 billion to $2.5 billion per year for mental health. Now in 2018, Proposition 2 affirms that up to $140 million in MHSA funds each year can be used to finance supportive housing for those with mental illness.

CalNonprofits spoke with nonprofits in mental health about Prop 2, asking for their input, with many of them explaining that they were supporting Prop 2 because connecting people to mental health services and housing is more effective in meeting their mental health service needs. CalNonprofits urges you to vote YES on Proposition 2 to make sure these funds can be used to help address the housing needs of people suffering from mental illness.

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Proposition 5: Changes Requirements for Certain Property Owners to Transfer Their Property Tax Base to Replacement Property.

CalNonprofits position: VOTE NO

Under Proposition 13 (passed in 1978), older and disabled individual homeowners can keep their longstanding property tax rate if they downsize to a less expensive house. Prop 5 would allow them to keep their property tax rate even if they buy a more expensive home. This measure would decrease state revenue by $100 million per year at first, growing to $1 billion per year. The Legislative Analyst’s Office notes that most of this funding currently goes to schools and local government, meaning the state would likely need to replace these lost funds with comparable amounts. This measure would not create the new housing we sorely need, and it would benefit a very small group of people to the serious detriment of local governments and schools — both of which are important funders and partners to the nonprofit community. Proposition 5 would hurt the missions of nearly all California nonprofits. We cannot afford to allow such a limited benefit to wreak such widespread damage.

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Is your nonprofit Voting with Your Mission? We can help!

Join our free Vote with Your Mission webinar next Tuesday, Sept. 25th at 11AM.

During this fast-paced presentation, Jan Masaoka and Nancy Berlin will talk through easy-to-implement strategies at your nonprofit to engage your colleagues, volunteers, board, and community in voting.

Want to help spread the word about your nonprofit engaging in voting?
Check out our free materials you can download, including our new guide: 12 Quick Tips for Helping People Vote, “I Work at a Nonprofit and I vote” stickers, a poster you can put up at your office reminding people to vote, and much more.

Think about it: If everyone who worked or volunteered in the environment voted, we’d have better environmental policies. If everyone who worked or volunteered in the arts voted, we’d have better arts funding. Nonprofits: which ballot propositions would support your mission and which would create obstacles to your mission? Let your employees, board members, volunteers and constituents know!

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