.Half-cent Sales Tax Increase and County Rail Line Added to the June 7 Primary

When Santa Cruz voters head to the polls on the first Tuesday in June, they will decide whether to implement a half-cent sales tax (Measure F) and determine the power structure of the Santa Cruz City Council (Measure E).

The items fill out a ballot that already features the countywide vote on Santa Cruz County Greenway’s controversial “railbanking” initiative and several federal, state and local offices, including the battle for the 3rd and 4th district seats on the County Board of Supervisors vacated by Ryan Coonerty and Greg Caput, respectively.

On June 7, Santa Cruz residents will decide whether the city should create six city council districts, each represented by its own councilmember, and if voters should be able to directly elect an at-large mayor. The alternative, which would take effect in November if voters reject Measure E, would mean the city would be diced into seven council districts and the mayor would be determined on a rotating basis. 

Santa Cruz residents will also be asked if the city should raise its sales tax in hopes of stabilizing the municipality’s financial footing. The increase, known now as Measure F, from 9.25% to 9.75% on purchases—excluding groceries, prescription medicine, diapers and feminine hygiene products—would generate an estimated $6 million in additional revenue for the City at a time when it faces a looming budget deficit as a result of the pandemic and CZU Lightning Complex fires.


  1. Re: Sales tax Measure FL Don’t be fooled. This is a farce and invented. City should stop funding the “homeless” services as this is the county’s job. Scare tactics: less city services, police, parks, maintenance. The city and county received plenty of relief from Federal COVID and State “homeless” money. Regressive and hurts already hurt poor people. This didn’t pass muster last time with a favorable targeted population polled at 69%, now 59%. The state limit was 9.5%, just got raised to 10.5% unless the city gets further state dispensation for higher rate. Buckle your seatbealts….There will be more hands sticking out for more of your money in the near future. BTW: The city already admitted the major portion will go to keep up their failed pension plan.


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Tony Nuñez
Tony Nuñez is a longtime member of the Watsonville community who served as Sports Editor of The Pajaronian for five years and three years as Managing Editor. He is a Watsonville High, Cabrillo College and San Jose State University alumnus.
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