Close races involving tax and bond measures remain to be decided around Fresno County, with the two tightest involving law enforcement services.
In Parlier, Measure Q is 14 votes shy of getting the two-thirds plus one, 66.67 percent, necessary to win. The measure would allow a hike in the parcel tax for home and apartment owners to add more police officers.
Because it’s a parcel tax, the money will be doled out by the county for the first time in January 2018, officials say.
“For 14 votes, we might be able to pull it off,” said Drew Bessinger, a former Parlier police chief and leader of the committee to get the measure passed.
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Measure Q is expected to raise between $300,000 and $495,000 annually for police services.
Selma’s measure to approve $4 million in general obligation bonds for a new police station also is falling short. The measure was behind by 20 votes on Wednesday.
14The number of yes votes needed to pass parcel tax measure in Parlier
The city’s police station was built in 1960 when the police department had 13 employees. Today, about 100 police, staff, reserves and volunteers work in the 3,000- to 4,000-square foot station. The city has about $4 million in state funding and is seeking a matching amount in a bond to pay the remaining cost, said Chief Greg Garner.
The cost, he said, is about $16.38 for every $100,000 in assessed value. As the city’s population increases, that amount will drop, he said.
Measure M in Kerman has a little bigger deficit to make up, down 165 votes at 63.87 percent. It was proposed to pay for a new senior center, animal shelter, park grounds and a police station with a three-quarters-of-a-cent sales tax increase for 15 years.
If Measure M fails, it is likely to come back in two years, said City Council Member Gary Yep, who was the lone council member who opposed putting it on the ballot because he thought it needed additional refinement.
“If it doesn’t go through this time, that means we will have more time to work on it,” he said.
One measure on the positive side of the ledger is a bond for new park facilities and repair and renovation in the Coalinga-Huron Recreation and Park District. The measure would authorize the district board to sell $14. 9 million in bonds. Measure N was leading by 140 votes on Wednesday.
The Fresno County Elections Office reported Wednesday that it has 111,000 unprocessed ballots. Brandi Orth, county clerk, said those ballots haven’t been broken out by community.