July 6, 2019
Friends of Transit
The Aug. 27 Phoenix Special Election is right around the corner, with early voting going on now through Aug. 23. The ballot includes two propositions that, if passed, would dramatically affect the city’s future. The first measure, Prop. 105, pertains to light rail, and the second, Prop. 106, pertains to City of Phoenix pensions.
We urge you to get informed - by now, your ballot should have arrived. Don’t leave it on the counter!
We’re proud that Friends of Transit has helped in many ways to get the word out. Please take the time to review the available information on the Phoenix Aug. 27th Special Election and vote!
- Prop. 105 was born from opposition to light rail expansion slated for south Phoenix.
- The authors contend that the cost of light rail is too high and that the system has a negative impact on the communities it passes through.
- Since the original 20-mile light rail line opened in 2008, ridership has consistently exceeded projections and economic development along the line has been rampant.
- If passed, Prop. 105 would halt the South Central Light Rail Extension and all planned light rail lines, including Capitol West and Metro Center North. Any city money budgeted to fund light rail would be diverted to other transportation needs.
- If passed, Prop. 105 would also essentially "send back" billions of federal dollars allocated to Phoenix to bring plans of a multi-line light rail system to fruition.
- The city’s portion of the money earmarked for light rail extensions comes from a $35.1 billion, 35-year transportation plan funded by a sales tax increase that Phoenix voters approved in 2015.
- Voters have approved light rail three times: 2000, 2004, and 2015. During those election cycles 500 community meetings were held to gather input from voters.
- The City of Phoenix is on track to pay down its $4 billion in pension liability (money owed retiring employees) over the next 25 years.
- Authors of the initiative want the city to pay down the pension liability more aggressively while foregoing “unnecessary” spending.
- "Unnecessary" spending includes many city services and neighborhood amenities including libraries, cultural attractions, senior/community centers, parks, public swimming pools, and road repairs. The spending freeze would also apply to education programs, economic development initiatives, and destination enhancing services such as the city’s contract with Downtown Phoenix, Inc.
- Public safety (police/fire) is the only service exempt from the initiative’s freeze on spending.
Early voting for the August 27th City of Phoenix Special Election began on July 31st, and mail-in ballots for the election were mailed out that same day.
The election is being conducted by the Phoenix City Clerk's Office. City of Phoenix voters will have the opportunity to vote on two City propositions related to light rail and pensions. Mail-in ballots will be sent to voters on the Permanent Early Voting List (PEVL) and those who requested an early mail-in ballot. Voters who are not already scheduled to receive a ballot by mail can request an early ballot by mail by submitting a signed, written request to the City Clerk Department. Request forms are available at phoenix.gov/elections, at city public service counters and libraries, or by calling the City Clerk Department at 602-261-VOTE (8683) or by using the 7-1-1 Relay System. Early ballot requests 3 must be received by the City Clerk Department no later than 5 p.m. on Friday, August 16.
Voters can also check the status of their early ballot at phoenix.gov/elections. Voted early ballots may be returned by mail or may be delivered to Phoenix City Hall, which is also an early voting site, or to any voting center location on August 24, 26, or 27 (Election Day). To be counted, voted early ballots must be received by an election official no later than 7 p.m. on Election Day.
In-person early voting will be available weekdays from Wednesday, July 31 through Friday, August 23, during normal business hours on the 15th Floor of Phoenix City Hall, 200 W. Washington St, Phoenix, AZ 85003. If your early mail-in ballot was damaged or spoiled, you may exchange it at the early voting site or request to replace the early ballot by calling 602-261-VOTE (8683).
Accessible voting devices that permit voters with disabilities to vote independently will be available at all voting locations. Voting centers will be used for this election. For voting convenience, the voting centers will be open on Saturday, August 24; and continue on Monday, August 26 and Tuesday, August 27 (Election Day). Voting centers will be open August 24 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; August 26 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and August 27 from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Accessible voting devices that permit voters with disabilities to vote independently will be available at all voting locations.
A list and map of the voting centers are available at Phoenix.gov/Elections and in the Sample Ballot and Publicity Pamphlet (SBPP) mailed the week of July 22 to each resident's address where there is a registered voter unless all voters in the household requested to obtain the Pamphlet electronically. The SBPP contains a sample ballot insert. The sample ballot is for reference and IS NOT AN OFFICIAL BALLOT.
For more information about the upcoming election, contact the Phoenix City Clerk Department at 602- 261-VOTE (8683), visit Phoenix.gov/Elections, or use the 7-1-1 Relay System. Follow on Twitter @PHXElections.