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Here's what happens if Measure C passes

Posted at 1:38 PM, Feb 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-19 16:38:11-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- A measure that would increase San Diego's hotel tax is heading to the ballot on March 3 and a recent poll shows how San Diegans feel about Measure C.

Measure C would increase San Diego’s hotel visitor tax from 10.5 percent to 11.75, 12.75 and 13.75 percent depending on hotel location through at least 2061.

The money would go toward expanding the convention center, funding homelessness programs and fixing San Diego roads.

According to the “Yes on C” campaign, the measure would create $147 million for homeless programs in the first five years of the initiative.

The campaign also says the measure would create 7,000 jobs.

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As far as roads, the measure includes “dedicated finding for fixing our streets.” If passed, money would go toward repaving an additional 150 miles of city streets every year.

The measure also includes criminal penalties if politicians misuse the funds, according to the campaign.

A new poll shows how San Diegans are feeling about the measure. The measure requires two-thirds supermajority to pass. A 10News-San Diego Union-Tribune poll shows that, as of February, 61 percent support the measure while 21 percent are opposed and 18 percent are undecided.

“A majority of San Diegans are uniting behind Measure C because it is straight forward in its approach to tackling the city’s most pressing issues with a tax on tourists, not San Diegans," said Greg Block, a spokesman for the Measure C campaign. "People already know Measure C will help with homelessness, street repair and job creation by expanding of the Convention Center."

Michael McConnell, an advocate for the homeless, is leading the opposition and warns the measure has “loopholes and risks.”

"They are hiding up to $2 Billion in bonds with no guarantee that money will be spent the right way," he said in a statement. "It does not even guarantee any housing and services for homeless families, seniors or veterans. We can’t trust the supporters who have taken money from a private prison company and been exposed for paying for support."

Below is a breakdown of how the money would be spent:

From the date the tax takes effect through the city’s fiscal year 2023-2024, the revenue from the tax would be allocated as follows:

  • 59% to Convention Center purposes;
  • and 41% to homelessness programs and services.

After Fiscal Year 2023-2024, revenue from the increase would be allocated:

  • 59% to Convention Center purposes;
  • 31% to homelessness programs and services; and
  • 10% for street repairs.