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Oaklanders have six days left to vote for or against Measure I, a tax increase for homeowners that would be used to compensate budget deficits in various city departments, specially the Oakland Police. Mayor Jean Quan’s proposal has incited a heated debate among councilmembers and residents on whether the tax increase will truly help alleviate the city’s financial crisis.

Oakland North has put together this overview of Measure I for Oakland residents who haven’t yet mailed their ballots.

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Oakland voters began mailing in ballots this week to decide the fate of a controversial $80 parcel tax that is being promoted as vital to help Oakland’s budget crisis and assailed as an unnecessary burden on homeowners, with no binding resolution to determine where it would be spent. Measure I would raise $60 million for the city over a five-year period.

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Amidst accusations of electioneering, the Oakland City Council approved legislation that would determine how funds from a proposed $80 parcel tax would be spent if Measure I passes next month. The legislation, authored by Councilmember At-Large Rebecca Kaplan, Councilmember Pat Kernighan (District 2) and Council President Larry Reid (District 7), determines how the $60 million collected from the tax under Measure I would be spent over the next five years, and allocates a majority of the funds toward public safety items.

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