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November 6, 2018 — California General Election
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City of Carson
Measure CA - Majority Approval Required

To learn more about measures, follow the links for each tab in this section. For most screenreaders, you can hit Return or Enter to enter a tab and read the content within.

Election Results


15,390 votes yes (56.69%)

11,759 votes no (43.31%)

100% of precincts reporting (54/54).

Shall the measure, to adopt a CITY CHARTER to provide the People of Carson with greater local control, through provisions such as: limiting council authority to levy taxes, prohibiting favoritism and nepotism, banning marijuana dispensaries, regulations for redevelopment of contaminated sites, promoting economic development, regulating impacts of truck intensive business, prohibiting conflicts of interest or financial interests in City contracts, modifying methodology of compensation for council, imposing term limits on city council members, be adopted?

What is this proposal?

Measure Details — Official information about this measure

Impartial analysis / Proposal

A proposed Charter for Carson is on the November 6, 2018 General Municipal Election Ballot in compliance with state law.

There are two types of cities in California, about 350 general-law and about 120 charter-law cities. Carson is currently a general law city. Residents of a charter city have greater local authority over their city than residents of a general law city. A charter can both limit and increase control over certain local issues, but a charter city must still comply with all laws considered matters of statewide concern. Examples of charter cities are Culver City, Long Beach, Signal Hill and Torrance. Carson’s proposed Charter imposes a number of limits and obligations on the Mayor and Council, while providing for more local control for residents.

Under the Charter, the Council’s ability to levy taxes on residents and businesses is more limited than under state law. The Charter imposes strict term limits on the Mayor and all Councilmembers. The Charter removes the City Clerk’s and City Treasurer’s term limits. If the population of Carson exceeds 100,000, by resolution, the Council may be enlarged from five to seven. The Charter prohibits conflicts of interest or financial interests by City-officials in City contracts. The Charter prohibits nepotism and favoritism.

The Charter authorizes formation of a Civil-Service Commission to process employment matters at City Hall. The Charter bans marijuana dispensaries in Carson. The Charter prohibits eminent domain of property currently zoned and used for residential purposes. The Charter provides for imposing mitigation fees on truck-intensive businesses. The Charter requires the City to consider the votes of mobilehome park residents regarding park closures and conversions. The Charter prohibits selling City-owned real-property valued over $2,500,000 without a two-thirds vote of the Council. Compensation for Councilmembers will be set at the “Low Income Limits” for a family of four as set forth in 2018 by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for the Los Angeles area. The Charter prohibits the appropriation of funds in excess of $20,000,000 for capital projects unless approved by a two-thirds vote of the Council. The Charter requires Project Labor Agreements for projects larger than $500,000, mandates a local hiring preference program for Carson residents and paying of prevailing wages.

The Charter sets a goal for Carson to be a balanced environmentally responsible community, providing employment opportunities, retail services, recreational activities, and quality neighborhoods, while pursuing economic development. Specific goals include eliminating blight, encouraging private investment, improving public infrastructure, and causing the remediation and redevelopment of contaminated property.

Before the Charter was placed on the ballot, public input was received at 6 Council public hearings and at 11 public meetings of the Carson Charter Committee composed of varied Carson stakeholders, including residents, local businesses and three former Carson elected officials. The proposed Charter was placed on the ballot by the City Council.

The proposed Charter for the City of Carson requires approval by a majority of voters. A “Yes” vote approves the Charter. A “No” vote disapproves the Charter.

Published Arguments — Arguments for and against the ballot measure

Arguments FOR

As we celebrate our 50th Anniversary, we are at a critical stage in Carson’s history. Carson has come a long way, but to continue our progress we need to position Carson for maximum effectiveness. Just as neighboring cities benefit from the economic development tools afforded them in their respective charters, e.g., Torrance, Carson residents too deserve the best from our City government. This Charter provides Carson with the tools needed to eliminate blight and promote private investment in an environmentally-friendly, economically sustainable and fiscally-sound manner, and establishes rules for fairer, more transparent city government.

Please read the Charter and you too will support Carson becoming a Charter City.

Here are noteworthy Charter Sections:
- Sections 206-208 empower City with necessary economic development tools.
- Section 304 sets council compensation at the federal low-income level for family of four.
- Section 305 re-imposes voter approved Term Limits on Mayor and City Council.
- Sections 308-319 guarantee transparency, accountability and open public meetings.
- Section 505 bans Nepotism and Favoritism at City Hall.
- Section 705 authorizes creation of a Civil Service Commission for fairness in City employment process.
- Section 907 establishes limits on City’s taxing authority to protect residents and businesses.
- Section 915 requires Project Labor Agreements and Prevailing Wages for City projects, and a local hiring preference for Carson residents.

By approving this Charter, these provisions would no longer be subject to the political whims of the City Council as only Carson residents could change the Charter through another election. This establishes the stability and consistency necessary to move Carson towards our “Future Unlimited!”

We respectfully request you support Carson becoming a Charter City. Join your neighbors, local businesses, community representatives, current and former elected officials and friends from throughout Carson - North, South, East and West and vote Yes.

Carson Mayor

Carson Councilmember

Carson City Treasurer (Retired)

Carson Senior Activist

Carson Planning Commission Chairperson

Arguments AGAINST

Carson has been a General Law City for over 50 years. Why do we need to change to a Charter City? Who will benefit?

- Council’s salary will more than double. Estimated to exceed $80k for the mayor and $77k for council members, for these part-time positions
- Proposed Charter does not address the concerns of the Unions and how it will affect the rights of employees
- Proposed Charter allows Council to enter into contracts for services traditionally performed by city employees
- Proposed Charter will overturn your vote to have “term limits” for ALL elected officials
- Proposed Charter allows Council by resolution to add two additional council members, should the City’s population exceed 100,000
- Proposed Charter allows for modification/suspension of zoning and other land use restrictions
- Proposed Charter allows amendments to current comprehensive oil and gas code.

Proposed Charter was rushed, forced to the voters without proper direction, research, vetting and understanding. Under Carson’s current General Law, many of the items in this charter can be implemented through an ordinance, but not the INCREASE IN SALARIES that the current majority of the City Council; Mayor Albert Robles, Councilmen Jawane Hilton, and Elito Santarina voted to place in this measure. This proposed Charter would bypass the salary limits imposed by STATE LAW.

Let’s not forget what happened to the City of Bell with their corruption and increased salaries as a charter city. Don’t let this happen to Carson!

Councilmembers Lula Davis-Holmes and Cedric Hicks voted NO on this measure. Please Vote NO on Measure CA, Thank you!



Proposed City Charter Committee Member

Carousel HOA President

Carson Coalition Inc CEO/President

Replies to Arguments FOR

With over 400 cities in California, less than 130 are charter cities. According to research, over 58% of Carson residents throughout the city (north, south, east and west), said if the charter were unnecessary that would be one of the most convincing reasons to oppose the Charter.

The proposed charter will:
– Provide land use and zone changes that may allow truck increases and warehouses in our community
– Increase the Mayor and city council’s salary by 72%
– Not address or define the potential cost of the new Civil Service Commission relative to the duties and responsibilities
– Allow for the commercial cultivation and wholesale of marijuana.

The Proposed Charter was rushed and is contradictory, thus allowing for loopholes that can be challenged.

The Charter Committee did not vote on the proposed Charter as presented.

A vote for the charter is a vote for the entire document not just particular sections.

Over 63% of Carson residents polled said a statement about corruption was a convincing argument to oppose the charter! Don’t forget the city of Bell!

Proposed Charter may impose elections using vote-by-mail ballots only.

Beware! The “impartial analysis” by the city attorney may not be so impartial!

Current council majority; Mayor Robles, Councilmen Hilton and Santarina voted to increase the council salaries. Please stop the money grab! Councilmembers Davis-Holmes and Hicks, some former elected officials, some of the Charter Committee members and residents are Voting NO on Measure CA. Please, VOTE NO on MEASURE CA. Thank you.






Replies to Arguments AGAINST

Who benefits from the Charter?

Carson residents - read it yourself and learn the truth. Don’t believe Councilmembers Lula Davis-Holmes and Cedric Hicks as they put their self-interests before you and Carson’s interests.

Both Councilmembers Lula Davis-Holmes and Cedric Hicks oppose the CHARTER BECAUSE IT BANS NEPOTISM AND FAVORITISM in the hiring and commission-appointment processes in Carson. Of the five elected officials on City Council, ONLY Councilmembers Davis-Holmes and Hicks have had relatives working for Carson. Additionally, both their spouses and children have been appointed to paid Carson Commissions! This is not right!

The Charter bans this corrupt practice of Councilmembers’ spouses, children and/or relatives being appointed as city commissioners or working for Carson. Everyone knows that this corrupt practice of nepotism and favoritism must stop.

In addition, the Charter limits councilmembers ability to interfere in the employment process at City Hall with the creation of a Civil Service Commission that brings fairness and integrity to the employment process by stopping councilmembers meddling in the workforce - but Councilmembers Davis-Holmes and Hicks oppose this because it undermines their influence to help their relatives during the employment process.

To ban nepotism and favoritism, to bring integrity and fairness to the employment process at City Hall, vote YES on the Charter. Charter cities like Torrance, Long Beach, and Culver City have already made the smart choice: Now it’s our turn, vote Yes on MEASURE CA.

Read the Charter or the Impartial City Attorney Analysis for the facts and DON’T be deceived.

Carson Mayor

Carson Councilmember

Carson City Treasurer (Retired)

Carson Senior Activist

Carson Planning Commission Chairperson

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