Chargers stadium plans, other local issues before voters

SAN DIEGO -- San Diego voters will be confronted Tuesday with a dozen ballot measures that will determine the fate of a proposed downtown football stadium, election scheduling, San Diego High School and funding for improvements at regional parks, among other things.

Since it could impact whether the Chargers remain in San Diego, Measure C has received by far the most publicity.

The proposal advanced by the team calls for a combination football stadium and convention facility to be built in the East Village near Petco Park.

Read More: Chargers file court documents aiming for simple majority passage of Measure C

Construction and operations would be funded, in part, by an increase in the city's hotel room tax. The levy is currently 10.5 percent of room bills, with an extra 2 percent fee that pays for tourism promotions. Under Measure C, the tourism fee would be eliminated, but the room tax would rise to 16.5 percent.

Because of the tax increase, Measure C needs to receive more than 66 percent of the vote to pass.

Read More: Spanos talks about Chargers’ future if voters reject downtown stadium

The Chargers and NFL would kick in a combined $650 million toward the project. Team executives said the combined facility would not only result in a state-of-the-art football stadium, but space that could be used for around 300 days a year.

Mayor Kevin Faulconer endorsed Measure C early last month after reaching a deal with Chargers Chairman Dean Spanos on a series of protections for the city coffers.

"Like a lot of San Diegans, I had a lot of questions about Measure C," Faulconer said at a recent news conference.

Read More: Guide to Nov. 8 Ballot Initiatives

"The Chargers have agreed to terms that provide greater certainty," said Faulconer, the only municipal elected official to publicly favor the initiative. "They've agreed to safeguards that better protect taxpayers and our economy."

He said the project includes tenants to cap costs from tax revenues, which guarantees money will be available for tourism marketing, and the city won't provide subsidies from its operating budget.

The Chargers plans have also received backing from the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce and Downtown San Diego Partnership. However, the San Diego Taxpayers Association, organizers of Comic-Con International and tourism industry are opposed.

"Dean Spanos has spent more than $5 million trying to convince voters to raise taxes so he can build himself a rent-free stadium and a convention center annex Comic-Con is telling us not to build," said Tony Manolatos, a spokesman for the No on C Coalition. "He's Goliath. We're David. So we're not taking anything for granted."

The other ballot questions are:

-- Measure D, which would, among other things, raise the hotel room tax to 15.5 percent and redirect use of the funds, bar the use of public money on a stadium project, prohibit an onsite expansion of the San Diego Convention Center without a public vote and set aside the Qualcomm Stadium site for education use and parkland, should it become available. There is a dispute over whether the measure requires a two-thirds vote for approval or a simple majority.;

-- Measure E, an outgrowth of former Mayor Bob Filner's scandals that would provide procedures for removing wayward elected officials and add conditions in which an office is determined to be vacant;

-- Measure F, which lowers the probationary period for deputy city attorneys from two years to one year;

-- Measure G, which would provide some basic reforms for the Citizens Review Board on Police Practices;

-- Measure H, which would consolidate City Charter provisions on purchasing and contracting;

-- Measure I, which will decide whether San Diego High School will be allowed to remain operating on city-owned parkland after its lease expires in eight years;

-- Measure J, which would amend a City Charter section on Mission Bay Park lease revenue to provide a greater portion for improvements at other regional parks;

-- Measure K, which would require November runoff elections for city offices;

-- Measure L, which would place citizens initiatives and referendums on general election ballots only, unless the City Council chose to place them before voters earlier;

-- Measure M, which would authorize an increase in the number of affordable housing units the city can be involved in developing or acquiring by nearly 39,000; and

-- Measure N, which would establish a levy on marijuana dispensaries if a state proposition allowing recreational use passes, but not impact the drug when sold for medical purposes.

The 35 ballot measures around the county also include 10 school district bond issues, proposed sales tax hikes in Chula Vista and Del Mar, repeals of medical marijuana dispensary bans in La Mesa and Lemon Grove, and a move to City Council elections by district in El Cajon.