Ballot measures’ war chests swell 

Politically charged measures for the November ballot are drawing hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations.

As voters head to the polls on Nov. 2, they will decide the fate of 15 ballot measures, including one of the most talked about: Proposition B, a measure placed on the ballot by Public Defender Jeff Adachi that would force city workers to pay more into their pensions and for their health benefits. Prop. B, which is attracting the most political contributions, has sparked a fundraising race as supporters have raised $720,867 and opponents $618,296, according to campaign finance filings with the Ethics Commission that were due Tuesday. It covers contributions raised as of Sept. 30.

Contributions in support of the measure included $10,000 from Stephen Bechtel Jr. and $50,000 from millionaire financier Warren Hellman, who announced Wednesday that he was withdrawing his support of the measure. Contributions opposing the measure come from labor unions, including $190,000 from Service Employees International Union Local 1021, a labor group representing the most city workers. The six-figure fundraising also comes as voters head to the polls to determine the outcomes of five races for seats on the Board of Supervisors. The stakes are high as moderates look to shake up the board’s progressive majority bloc.

Other ballot measures are also attracting big money.

One political committee opposing two ballot measures related to the hotel tax has raised $276,000, including $100,000 from the Hotel Council of San Francisco and another $100,000 from the political action committee of the Building Owners and Managers Association of San Francisco.

Nearly $200,000 in political contributions has been raised by one group in support of the heated proposal to ban sitting and lying on San Francisco sidewalks.

Supporters of the measure that would eliminate the pay level of Muni operators from the city charter have raised in excess of $317,000 as of July 15. A Tuesday filing had yet been received by the commission. 

Political contributions are expected to keep pouring in as campaigning nears the home stretch.

jsabatini@sfexaminer.com

 

 

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