• Simple Majority Not Enough: Measure G Goes Down

    by Marge Ann Jameson

    Measure G, the unique “tech bond” which would have provided money for Pacific Grove schools to purchase much-needed technology for students, gained a simple majority from the outset of vote-counting on Election Night, Tues., Nov. 5.

    But though it remained in the forefront throughout the evening, it never gained the 55 percent needed to pass. Of 3,941 votes cast, 2,030 were in favor of the bond for a percentage of 51.51% according to the Monterey County Elections Department “Semi-Final official Report 4 issued on election night.

    “That’s 140 votes,” said Pacific Grove Unified School District President John Thibeau, who said he was “disappointed.”

    “If there are 2,000 students in the district and each has two parents, that would account for 4,000 votes. We have an informed, intelligent community. Why did they vote against it? Were they just sitting on the sidelines?” he asked.

    Assistant Superintendent of Schools Rick Miller concurred. “This is a big disappointment for the kids of the district,” he said. “Did the voters not understand the measure? Could it be that they don’t understand that if we don’t target funds with a bond measure, the money will have to come from somewhere else – salaries, for example?”

    The last two bond measures were parcel taxes and required a two-third majority, but each garnered more than enough votes to have passed had they been bond measures as this one was.

    Thibeau and Miller both indicated that there will be another try at passing the bond measure. A board decision will be forthcoming in the near future, said Miller.

    According to Elections Department figures, it may well be that Pacific Grove voters didn’t necessarily vote against Measure G: They just plain didn’t vote. There are 9,417 voters registered in Pacific Grove, meaning turnout was only 41.85 percent.

    Turnout countywide was equally poor. “We had a beautiful day weather-wise,” said Monterey county’s Acting Registrar of Voters Claudio Valenzuela. “We have well-trained poll workers. Voters had the ballots for 29 days, with an extra five days or so to look over the voter guide. We take the ballots at any number of places; we have outreach to hospitals and even inmates. Why don’t people vote?”

    Countywide, there are still 8,000 votes outstanding, which the Elections Department is counting as we go to press. A final count is expected late Friday evening, though Valenzuela did not expect it to make a difference in he Pacific Grove outcome.

    posted to Cedar Street Times on November 7, 2013

    Topics: Front PG News

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