Measure A is a bond that would help fund housing for homeless people and improve mental health facilities and public parks. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)

Measure A is a bond that would help fund housing for homeless people and improve mental health facilities and public parks. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)

SF voters favor Measure A, providing funding for homeless and mental health services

San Francisco voters are in favor of a $487.7 million bond to pay for some of the most pressing needs facing The City, including mental health facilities, housing for the homeless and upgrades to public parks. In election returns released early Wednesday morning, Proposition A results show 233,931 voters (71.07 percent) are in favor, and 95,215 (28.93 percent) are against the proposal.

Prop. A, the San Francisco’s Health and Recovery Bond, was supported by Mayor London Breed and the Board of Supervisors to generate $487.7 million from property taxes to fund housing for homelessness and mental health facilities, parks and street work.

The bond is timed for property owners not to experience an increase in the amount of taxes owed and 50 percent of the cost can be passed on to tenants.

When it was placed on the ballot, Breed said the bond “comes at a critical time for our city.”

“COVID-19 has shown us just how important it is to have safe and accessible outdoor spaces and recreation opportunities, and has underscored the need to create more permanent supportive housing, while improving our behavioral health resources,” she said then.

The bond requires two-thirds of the vote to pass.

Of the total bond amount, $207 million would go toward public facilities and housing for those who are homeless and who need help for mental health and substance use disorders.

About $239 million would go toward parks and open spaces including $54 million for the renovation of Chinatown’s Portsmouth Square, $30 million for Gene Friend Recreation Center in SoMa, and $29 million for India Basin in the Bayview for a waterfront park.

And $41.5 million would go toward street resurfacing and other repairs.

The bond would result in an annual property tax cost of about $8.13 for an $600,000 home, according to the City Controller’s analysis.

With interest on the general obligation bonds, the total cost is estimated at $960 million.

One paid argument against the bond came from retired judge Quentin Kopp, a former supervisor and Ethics Commissioners, who said voters should “break the cycle of dependency on our hard-earned tax dollars.”

jsabatini@sfexaminer.com

Bay Area NewsElection 2020homelessnessPoliticssan francisco news

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