The Prop. 90 Debate
|Evan Halper at the LA Times takes a look at Proposition 90, the eminent-domain measure.|
Backers of the $37 billion in public works bonds on the November ballot are anxious about how Californians are going to vote — but not on their own proposals.
A measure that will appear a few notches down the ballot threatens to undermine the package hatched by the governor and Legislature to shore up levees, repair and expand freeways, and build schools and affordable housing.
Even if voters approve the borrowing measures — Propositions 1A through 1E — proponents say infrastructure improvements could be stymied if Proposition 90 also passed. That measure, sponsored by property rights advocates, would restrict the government's ability to seize homes and businesses for development.
Local governments, school districts, water agencies, transportation authorities and housing groups have been studying the potential effect the property rights measure would have on their ability to move ahead with projects envisioned in the public works package. Many have concluded that it would throw their plans into disarray.
Interestingly, Prop. 90 is the only ballot measure Gov. Schwarzenegger has yet to take a public stand on, even as interest groups are saying the measure could torpedo much of his signature bond package.