Read our lips: No new taxes

County voters match state trend in rejecting Props 1A-1E

Reflecting statewide sentiment almost to the percentage point, Butte County voters overwhelmingly rejected a series of ballot measures designed to mitigate California’s budget crisis, approving only the initiative that will prevent elected officials from getting pay raises during deficit years.

Propositions 1A-1E all received less than 39 percent of the vote locally and 38 percent statewide in Tuesday’s special election. Prop 1F got 81 percent local approval, 74 percent overall. Exit polling statewide indicated voters opposed the funding mechanisms in the package: tax increases, reallocation of program-specific funds and borrowing against future lottery income.

So, it’s back to the drawing board for state officials to solve an estimated $21.3 billion budget gap. Leading up to May 19, Gov. Schwarzenegger said deep cuts would be the result if the propositions failed. He’s also likely to raid city and county coffers.