Tucson CitizenTucson Citizen

Home Rule (Prop. 400) losing; city could lose $20 million

With all but one precinct yet to report as of midnight, it looks like Ricahrd Fimbres will be the new face on the Tucson City Council for Ward 5.

And the public safety initiative Prop. 200, was crushed, losing by more than 2 to 1.

But everything else in the city election is too close to call. While no one at county elections picked up when I called a few minutes ago, it’s a safe bet that there are still ballots to count – any early ballots turned in Tuesday and any provisional  ballots cast. How many of those there are I don’t know but if last year’s presidential election and the 2006 state election are any indicator there are likely hundreds if not thousands of votes still to count.

If it’s just hundreds, incumbent Democrat Karin Uhlich in Ward 3 may be safe, as she had a roughly 600-vote lead over Republican challenger Ben Buehler-Garcia. Uhlich certainly could have used the nearly 4,000 votes Green Party candidate Mary Decamp likely siphoned off.

In Ward 6, incumbent Democrat Nina Trasoff trails Republican Steve Kozachik by 1,200 votes. Trasoff had a razor-thin edge over Kozachik most of the night, but late returns, likely from the East Side Republican stronghold (the only one in the city), put the Republican ahead. Depending on how many ballots were cast in the remaining voting area still to report and the uncounted balance, Trasoff may be done.

But the big news (I know, I buried the lede) may be Prop. 400 losing by about 600 votes. If this goes down, it will cost the city millions. The vote was for Home Rule, which lets municipalities exceed state spending caps with locally generated revenue. The rule has to be reauthorized by voters every four years.

It has always passed. But the anti-incumbent, anti-tax voting trend of this election may have led voters to vote against it thinking it would save them tax money. It doesn’t, it just screws the city out of money it can’t afford to be screwed out of.

See ya’ll when the sun rises.

City election results as of Midnight from Pima County elections web site:

Ward 3

UHLICH, KARIN DEM 29,769  47.32%

BUEHLER-GARCIA, BEN REP 29,197  46.41%

DeCAMP, MARY GRN 3,855  6.13%

Ward 5

FIMBRES, RICHARD DEM 33,200 53.36%

McCLUSKY, SHAUN REP 28,862 46.39%

Ward 6

TRASOFF, NINA DEM 30,506 48.86%

KOZACHIK, STEVE REP 31,706 50.78%

Prop 200

YES 19,129 29.77%

NO 45,121 70.23%

Prop 400

YES 31,053 49.50%

NO 31,676 50.50%

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