Memo to Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa: The voters
of California do not want to change Proposition 13. The mayor put a spotlight
on the subject in an August speech to the Sacramento Press Club. He said it was
time to revisit Proposition 13, emphasizing the idea that commercial property
should pay more in property taxes. His speech generated a lot of follow-up

In response, the voters said, No.  Today’s Field Poll reported Prop 13 favored
by a 63% to 29% margin – a greater spread than when the measure passed 33 years
ago. Support for Prop 13 was overwhelming. Republicans, Democrats and
Independents all strongly supported the measure, with Democrats supporting it
by a 13% margin, and the important independent voting block by more than two to

Of the 60 or so subcategories of voters identified in the
poll only two opposed Prop 13 – those self identified Strong Liberals, and
those who think the initiative process is a bad idea. All other categories
supported Prop 13 by wide margins.

Voters also turned thumbs down on the split roll propsal of
assessing commercial property differently than residential property. 41% liked
that idea, 50% said no. The San Francisco Bay area was more inclined to support
a split roll while other areas of the state opposed the idea. Democrats were in
favor of a split roll, Republicans and Independents opposed. 

The Field Poll reported this was the strongest opposition it
ever recorded to the plan of charging commercial property higher property taxes
than residential property.

The poll also tested the suggestion of overturning the
Proposition 13 provision that requires a two-thirds vote to raise taxes. The
poll tested both a proposal to lower the vote requirement to 50% and one that
would demand a 55% vote to raise taxes. Neither fared well with poll

Voters opposed the idea of a 50% vote to raise taxes in the
legislature by 65% to 29%.

Likewise, voters turned thumbs down on the 55% tax increase
proposal by 63% to 30%. 

Whatever tax plans the taxing interests in Sacramento are
cooking up they will most likely avoid Prop 13.

You can find the Field Poll results on Proposition 13 here.