2016 California Ballot Propositions: Where Does OCMA/CMA Stand? October 13, 2016 Alert, General OCMA/CMA Positions on 2016 Ballot Initiatives 0 CMA’s Board of Trustees: Positions on November 2016 Ballot Measures http://www.cmanet.org/issues-and-advocacy/cmas-top-issues/2016-ballot-propositions/ Prop. 52: California Medi-Cal Hospital Reimbursement Initiative Position: CMA Supports (YesProp52.org) Prop. 52 would lock in hospital fees to allow the state to draw down federal health care funds. It would add language to the California Constitution requiring voter approval of changes to the hospital fee program. This will prevent diversion of the funds from the original intended purpose of supporting hospital care to Medi-Cal patients and paying for health care for low-income children. Prop. 53: California Public Vote on Bonds Initiative Position: CMA Opposes (NoOnProp53.com) Prop. 53 would require voter approval before the state could issue more than $2 billion in public infrastructure bonds that would require an increase in taxes or fees for repayment. This initiative could impact medical care by curtailing the ability of the State of California and local government entities to build or rebuild major infrastructure projects. Prop. 55: California Children’s Education and Health Care Protection Act of 2016 Position: CMA Supports (YesOn55.com) Prop. 55 would extend the current income tax rates on the wealthiest two percent of Californians – singles earning more than $250,000 and couples earning more than $500,000 a year – for 12 years. Funding would provide local school districts the money needed to hire teachers and reduce class sizes and improve access to health care services for low-income children so they can stay healthy and thrive. Prop. 56: California Healthcare, Research and Prevention Tobacco Tax Act of 2016 Position: CMA Supports (YesOn56.org) Prop. 56 – supported by a broad alliance of physicians, health care advocates, educators and others – would raise California’s tobacco tax, which is currently among the lowest in the country, to $2.87 a pack. Designed as a user fee on cigarettes and other tobacco products, the majority of the money would be used for existing health programs and research into cures for cancer and other illnesses caused by smoking and tobacco products. Prop. 58: The Language Education Acquisition and Readiness Now (LEARN) Initiative Position: CMA Supports (SupportProp58.com) Prop. 58 would give local school districts and their academic staff the option of providing bilingual education. California needs a well-prepared and educated health care workforce that reflects our diverse society. Prop. 58 would break down barriers by removing outdated mandates, helping physicians provide the best patient care for all Californians. Prop. 61: Drug Price Standards Initiative Position: CMA Opposes (NoOnProp61.org) Prop. 61 would prevent certain state agencies from entering into contracts for the purchase of prescription drugs unless the price paid is the same as or lower than the special discounts provided to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The measure could result in the invalidation of existing agreements between the state and pharmaceutical companies that already provide significant discounts to the state. Prop. 63: Safety for All Act of 2016 Position: CMA Supports (SafetyForAll.com) Prop. 63 would prohibit the possession of large-capacity ammunition magazines and would require most individuals to pass a background check and obtain authorization from the California Department of Justice to purchase ammunition. CMA supports Prop. 63 to ensure our communities are safe and healthy places to live. Prop. 64: Adult Use of Marijuana Act Position: CMA Supports (YesOn64.org) Prop. 64 would regulate and control the cultivation and use of non-medical cannabis. The proposal would generate up to $1 billion in taxes for state and local governments, according to a fiscal analysis of the proposal. CMA believes that the most effective way to protect public health is to tightly control, track and regulate cannabis, as well as comprehensively research and educate the public on its health impacts. Prop. 56: CA Healthcare, Research and Prevention Tobacco Tax Act of 2016 The California Healthcare, Research and Prevention Tobacco Tax Act of 2016 – supported by a broad alliance of physicians, health care advocates, educators and others – would raise California’s tobacco tax, which is currently among the lowest in the country, to $2.87 a pack. The majority of the money from the initiative’s user fee on cigarettes and other tobacco products, including e-cigarettes containing nicotine, will be used for existing health programs and research into cures for cancer and other illnesses caused by smoking and tobacco products. “Sadly, we see tobacco’s deadly and costly toll every day in our hospitals and clinics. Cancer and other tobacco-related diseases kill more people than car accidents, murder, suicide, alcohol, illegal drugs and AIDS combined,” said Steven Larson, M.D., MPH, president of the California Medical Association (CMA). “The heart of this initiative is simple: Taxing tobacco saves lives by getting people to quit or never start smoking. The only people who will pay are those who smoke. If you don’t smoke, you don’t pay.” California taxpayers pay $3.5 billion annually to treat cancer and other tobacco-related diseases through Medi-Cal. A user fee on cigarettes is a matter of fairness – it shifts the fiscal burden to smokers for these medical programs, smoking prevention and research. The tobacco tax will also prevent a new generation of kids from taking up a deadly, addictive habit. Despite years of progress in education and research about the dangers of tobacco, nearly 17,000 California kids get hooked on smoking every year; one-third of them will eventually die from tobacco-related illnesses. Prop. 56 is backed by a coalition that includes CMA, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, American Lung Association in California, American Heart Association, California Dental Association, the California Hospital Association, SEIU California, Blue Shield of California and philanthropist Tom Steyer. Connect with the campaign Visit the campaign website at www.yeson56.org Join the conversation on Twitter with @YesOn56 and #YesOn56 Follow on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Yeson56 Download Spanish-language resources at www.yeson56.org/espanol Prop 55: CA Children’s Education and Health Care Protection Act of 2016 The California Children’s Education and Health Care Protection Act of 2016 will extend the temporary income tax provisions of Proposition 30 for 12 years. Prop. 55 will extend the current income tax rates on the wealthiest two percent of Californians – singles earning more than $250,000 and couples earning more than $500,000 a year. This initiative will maintain the current tax rates on the wealthiest Californians to prevent billions of dollars in funding cuts for public education and vital health care services. This measure will generate $8 -11 billion per year, and provide up to $2 billion annually to improve access to health care for low-income children and their families. California Governor Jerry Brown supported and campaigned for the passage of Proposition 30 in 2012 to increase taxes to prevent $6 billion cuts to the education budget for California state schools. The measure was approved by California voters by a margin of 55 to 45 percent. Funding from this vital measure will provide local school districts the money they need to hire good teachers and reduce class sizes for our students. And it will improve access to health care services for the low-income children so they can stay healthy and thrive. Budget forecasts show that unless we extend these taxes on the wealthy, in the first year alone our public schools will face nearly $5 billion in cuts, and our state budget will face a nearly $3 billion deficit. “Doctors and other health care providers across the state are supporting this initiative because it will provide critical funds to improve access to health care for low-income children and their families,” said CMA President-Elect Ruth Haskins, M.D. “This initiative will help our state provide the care vulnerable kids need to stay healthy and thrive.” The initiative also ensures strict accountability and transparency so that all the money goes where it matters the most – directly to the classroom, not towards administrative costs. Prop. 55 is backed by a coalition that includes CMA, the California Hospital Association, Association of California Health Districts, California Academy of Family Physicians, California Dental Association, Health Access California and Blue Shield of California. Connect with the campaign Visit the campaign website at www.yeson55.com Join the conversation on Twitter with @YesOn55 and #Prop55 Follow on Facebook at www.facebook.com/yeson55 Comments are closed.