ELECTION RESULTS: Marin and Contra Costa Counties
ERICA MU: Marin County residents considered dueling desalination measures yesterday. Measure S asked for voter approval before the water district builds a hundred-million dollar plant that would convert five million gallons of seawater into drinking water every day. Measure T asked for that and more – namely, voter approval on everystage of development, including planning and studying. And the voters? Well, they seemed to want both.
It came down to counting votes, and Measure S got more. So now, the Water District has the greenlight to spend a projected $700,000 on permitting and planning work. Opponents suspect it will cost a lot more. Either way, desalination plans have been on hold since spring, when the district learned water consumption in Marin County had dropped by 25%.
One bridge and alphabet letter away from Marin’s Measures S and T was Contra Costa County’s Measure U. It was essentially a glorified public poll, asking voters for their opinion on a proposed Las Vegas-style casino in Point Molate, Richmond.
Almost 60% of voters said what happens in Vegas should stay in Vegas. The “No” vote will weigh on the Richmond City Council as it considers whether the 1.2 billion dollar casino and resort would bring more crime or jobs into its neighborhoods.
Proponents of the failed measure, including The Guidiville Band of Pomo Indians and their development partner Upstream, LLC believe the destination site could help solve the city’s 18% unemployment rate.
Whether or not the city moves forward with plans for the shoreline casino, it would still need approval from the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs. That is a subcommittee of a powerful opponent of the casino – none other than Senator Dianne Feinstein.
For KALW News, I’m Erica Mu.