The Alameda Transportation Commission has called off the partial recount of votes on Measure B1, which lost in the squeakiest of squeakers this election. The measure, which needed a two-thirds majority, fell just 0.14 percent shy -- about 700 votes out of 350,000 cast. B1 would have doubled the county's transportation sales tax to one cent in order to raise almost $8 billion for transportation projects over 30 years.
Arthur Dao, executive director of the ATC, told us today that the partial recount focussed on precincts that had shown both the highest level of support and also a high number of undervotes for B1, all in Berkeley. Yesterday's recount examined about 28,000 ballots, with just seven additional yes votes found, Dao said. "That's a very small number statistically to get us to the 750-800 yes ballot we'd need to get us to the two-thirds threshold."
Dao said the cost of the recount was under $8,000.
Plans are in the works for another measure, he said. "We will be regrouping, remobilizing, and rethinking with the objective of going back to the voters."
The county's current half-cent transportation sales tax expires in 2022. Last week, Dao cited inadequately paved streets, cuts in AC Transit bus service, and increased demand for transportation in the face of requirements to reduce greenhouse gas emissions as pressing projects that need to be addressed by the county.