Prop 30: Why the mayors of SJ, Oakland and Newsom are on opposing sides of the EV ballot measure


SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) — The mayor of San Jose is the latest local politician to speak out in favor of Proposition 30, pitting him and many other Democratic Party members against Governor Newsom who opposes it.

The proposal aims to raise taxes on the wealthy to fund wildfire management and electric vehicle infrastructure.

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“I’m surprised the governor doesn’t support this,” Oakland Mayor Libby Schaff said in an interview last Wednesday, “I respect him so much, we disagree on this one.”

Proposition 30 would provide funds for electric vehicles and charging infrastructure

It would also provide funds for wildfire prevention by raising taxes by 1.75% on people earning more than $2 million a year.

“20% of Proposition 30, or approximately $20 billion, will go directly to CAL FIRE for staffing, suppression and fire prevention,” said John Byrne representing CAL FIRE Local 2881.

One of the biggest financial contributors to Prop 30 is ride-sharing company Lyft, which has donated millions to it.

Although Prop 30 has received support from the California Democratic Party, it is also opposed by the California Republican Party and other groups.

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They say Lyft is trying to get taxpayers to help them fulfill a state mandate to eventually electrify their fleet.

During his CARE Court bill signing on Wednesday, ABC7 News asked Newsom about his opposition to Prop 30.

“It’s a big tax hike that disproportionately benefits a few large corporations,” Newsom said. “There was a great company, a wonderful company, that will be a major beneficiary of everyone else’s tax hike to direct the money to an area where we just passed the biggest credit and largest budget in US history.”

On Tuesday in San Jose, another campaign for Prop 30 was launched at the headquarters of IBEW Local 322.

This time by local labor, environmental, fire safety leaders and another typical Newsom supporter, San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo, who this time differs from the governor.

ABC7 asked the mayor about Newsom’s claims that this only benefits big companies like Lyft.

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He responded by pointing out that no Lyft representative was present at the press conference.

“I just wanted to ask, is there anyone from Lyft here?” The mayor asked the crowd behind him sarcastically, “I don’t think so.”

Liccardo claims that 60% of the city of San Jose’s emissions come from vehicles.

Although he says he recognizes that part of the proposal would benefit companies like Lyft.

“The fact that about 1% of the profits might go back to them doesn’t worry me too much if that means we can all breathe cleaner air, we have fewer forest fires,” Liccardo said.

If you’re on the ABC7 News app, click here to watch live

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