- This page provides an overview of Measures L and M in the City of Sausalito. You will also find information from City meetings on the subject.
- More information on the local ballot on November 6, 2018, including information on the City Council election, may be found on the webpage for the 2018 General Municipal Election.
Important Note: Because the November 2018 election will include two Sausalito ballot measures, the names of the two qualified candidates for the two open seats on the City Council, Jill James Hoffman and Susan Cleveland-Knowles, will also appear on the ballot.
A Currents article dated August 10 ("City Council Incumbents Uncontested in November Election") had previously reported that in the case of an uncontested Council race, the City Council has the option of bypassing an election and appointing the candidates to a four-year term. California Elections Code Section 10229(a) provides that when there is an uncontested election, the Council can appoint the candidates to the positions that are open instead of having to hold the election. However, Section 10229(b) specifically provides that subsection (a) is not applicable if "...a city measure has qualified and is to be submitted to the voters at that municipal election." Because the City has two measures on the ballot in November, the candidates' names will also appear.
On July 31, 2018, the Sausalito City Council voted unanimously to place Measures L and M on the 2018 November ballot. If enacted, the two measures will help ensure that visitors to Sausalito and entities doing business in our City continue to pay their fair share to support core City services like maintaining streets and roads, providing police protection, improving traffic and congestion, and maintaining storm drains.
The Sausalito City Council placed Measures L and M on the local ballot to update the City’s hotel tax rate and simplify the City’s business license ordinance to make it more equitable for businesses of all sizes.
Measure L – the City of Sausalito Hotel Tax/Tourism Mitigation Measure – would update the City’s existing hotel room tax rate from 12% to 14% (a 2% increase), bringing it in line with other nearby communities and providing a reliable source of locally controlled funds to reinvest in our community.
Measure M – Measure M – the City of Sausalito Business Tax Equity Measure – would, if enacted, simplify the existing business tax ordinance by reducing the number of categories from twenty-two to four. The rate most retail and restaurant businesses pay would be reduced by about 13%. The new categories are as follows:
- Category 1 (general retail, wholesale, restaurants, hotels, tour operators, and manufacturing): $1 per thousand of gross receipts, $125 annual minimum
- Category 2 (rental units - commercial and residential): $2 per thousand of gross receipts, $125 annual minimum
- Category 3 (service and professionals): $3 per thousand of gross receipts, $125 annual minimum
- Category 4 (contractors): $2 per thousand of gross receipts, $125 annual minimum
The City's current business license measure was last updated more than fifty years ago. If approved by voters, Measure M would make the City's outdated ordinance more transparent, easy to understand, and fair for businesses of all sizes. To find out how Measure M would affect your business rates, please read the Voter Information Presentation on Measures L and M.
If enacted, Measures L and M would generate about $1,196,750 annually for local priorities identified by the public, including:
- Maintaining streets and roads
- Providing police protection, neighborhood crime prevention, and traffic enforcement to protect pedestrians, cyclists and drivers
- Providing traffic and congestion improvements
- Reinvesting in local business
- Maintaining storm drains to prevent pollutants, garbage, and sediment from entering the Bay
Measures L and M do NOT increase taxes for Sausalito residents who are not business proprietors or hotel guests. Only those who stay in hotel rooms overnight in Sausalito will pay for Measure L and only those who conduct business in the City will pay for Measure M. Sausalito residents and homeowners will NOT be taxed.
Measures L and M require annual independent audits and regular reports back to the community to ensure that the funds are spent consistent with the City’s tradition of responsible fiscal management. All funds generated must be used in Sausalito for local services – no funds may be taken by the State.
Registration and Vote-By-Mail Information
If you are not yet registered to vote and you wish to do so, you may do so securely by visiting registertovote.ca.gov. You must register to vote by October 22, 2018 in order to participate in the election.
Ballots for Vote-By-Mail voters will be sent out starting October 8. If you have not received your ballot by October 15, please call the Marin County Elections Department at: (415) 473-6456.
If you are voting by mail, your ballot must be postmarked on or by Election Day (November 6). Your Ballot must be received by November 9 in order to be counted.
Your completed mail ballot may be returned to any Marin County Polling Place on Election Day from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
If you are not a vote-by-mail voter, and you wish to become one, you may request a vote-by-mail ballot. You must request your vote-by-mail ballot on or by October 30, 2018. For more information, please call the Marin County Elections Department at (415) 473-6456.
Voting and Polling Place Information
You may vote in person on Election Day, Tuesday, November 6 from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. For your polling place and sample ballot, contact the Marin County Elections Department at (415) 473-6456 or visit the Marin County Voter Information Portal.
- City County Council Staff Report from July 31, 2018 on Measures L and M
- Voter Information Presentation on Measures L and M
- City Council Resolution Placing Measure L (Hotel Tax/Tourism Mitigation Measure) on Ballot
- City Council Resolution Placing Measure M (Business Tax Equity Measure) on Ballot
- Frequently Asked Questions on Measure L and M