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November 7, 2017 — Local Elections

City of San Mateo
Measure B Charter Amendment - Majority Approval Required

To learn more about measures, follow the links for each tab in this section. For most screenreaders, you can hit Return or Enter to enter a tab and read the content within.

Election Results


9,726 votes yes (81.4%)

2,219 votes no (18.6%)

100% of precincts reporting (53/53).

47,173 ballots counted.

Even election year charter amendment
— undefined

To conform with state law, shall the Charter amendment changing the timing of the city's general municipal elections from odd-numbered years to even-numbered years, and extending the terms of the council members elected in 2015 and 2017 for a period of one year, respectively, be adopted?

What is this proposal?

Measure Details — Official information about this measure

Published Arguments — Arguments for and against the ballot measure

Arguments FOR

Vote yes on Measure B to amend the City's charter to move regular elections from odd years to even years (statewide) elections. This is to meet Senate Bill 415 signed into law on September 1, 2015. This law requires a City's regular elections to move to even years if there is at least 25% less voter turnout from the most recent odd-year election, compared to the average of the last four even-year elections. San Mateo's voter turnout in 2015 was 33.1%. The average of the last four even year elections was 68.4% equaling a 35.3% drop in voter turnout in odd years. The intent of the law is to hold elections when voter turnout is most robust.

A charter amendment is required because the City's charter explicity calls out that regular elections are to be held in odd numbered years. In order to be compliant with state law, a charter amendment is needed to change this language to even years.

In order to make  the move to even year elections, Council terms would be adjusted one time from a four-year term to a five-year term. This means all Council members seated on December 4,2017, would have their terms extended one year. For example, the three seats up for election this November, the successful candidates would next be upon for election in November 2022, and the two incumbents currently seated would be up for election in November 2020 instead of 2019. Thereafter terms revert back to four year terms. The City's next general election would be November 2020, three years from now.

We urge you to vote Yes on Measure B to amend the City Charter to be in compliance with state law. More information can be found on the city's website:

/s/ David Lim, Mayor

/s/ Rick Bonilla, Deputy Mayor

/s/ Diane Papan, Council Member

/s/ Maureen Freschet, Council Member

/s/ Joe Goethals, Council Member 

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