08 November 2006

Election wrap

Tuesday's midterm elections didn't have any issues that directly affected the A's, but some legislation passed that impacts the market enough to make ownership notice.
  • In Sacramento, voters soundly defeated Measures Q & R, which would have raised and allocated money for a new Downtown Sac arena for the Kings. Over the last month, both items became doomed when the Kings pulled their support of the measures due to disagreements over deal terms, particularly parking agreements.
  • Propositions 1A and 1B passed by their necessary margins, paving the way for needed transportation infrastructure improvements all over the state. The Bay Area could receive up to $4.5 billion of Prop 1B's $19.9 billion total. $1.3 billion of the regional money will go towards mass transit, but let's be realistic about what that means - $1.3 billion doesn't go that far when considering the number of large projects out there. Some small but not insignificant amount will help with the BART Warm Springs extension and maybe even with planning for the San Jose extension, but the money can't pay for everything.
  • San Jose's new mayor will be Democrat Chuck Reed. A fiscal conservative, Reed is not the go-to guy if anyone's looking to facilitate a sweetheart deal for the A's in downtown San Jose. Reed did vote for the ballpark EIR study and I came away from several meetings thinking the Reed would go with the downtown site if that's all the A's wanted, but as we now know from the larger scope of the A's plans, the site itself won't be enough.
  • Proposition 90, the eminent domain compensation measure, was defeated. A similar measure passed in Oregon two years ago and resulted in billions of dollars of compensation claims against local and state governments. Prop 90 wouldn't have been relevant in the Fremont Pacific Commons situation, but should that fail and the A's look elsewhere, it could come to the forefront.
More on transportation later today.


jrbh said...

Prop 90 reminded me a lot of Prop 13. It identified a problem a Democratic legislature has failed to address -- with 13, rising property values and concomitant tax increases forcing old people out of their homes; with 90, an eminent domain court ruling that makes "due process" look like a joke -- and then tucked in some scabrous and self-interested poison pills and wrapped it in a populist "solution" to those problems. The state dodged a major bullet on this one, unlike with 13. It's up to the legislature now to get some protection for property owners through so we don't face this again.