2022 Ballot Measure FAQs
Local residents value our robust City services that protect and maintain what makes San Mateo a great place to live and raise a family. The City is committed to maintaining these community services that support our quality of life, including access to parks and open space, public safety services, and well-maintained streets and sidewalks.
To protect our quality of life, the City has taken proactive steps to reduce expenditures and maintain the current level of services the community has come to expect. The City has identified a number of services we’d like to enhance and nearly $300 million in capital improvements for which we do not currently have funding.
To further support these efforts, the San Mateo City Council has placed a measure on the November 2022 ballot to increase the existing real property transfer tax so that properties sold or transferred for $10 million or more will be subject to an additional 1% on the sale price. Based on recent property sales, this is expected to only affect less than 1.0% of all properties sold or transferred in the City.
Increasing the local property transfer tax from 0.5% to 1.5% for properties valued at $10 million or more would support our General Fund and provide locally-controlled funding for our City to continue to address the community's top priorities, including:
- Maintaining parks, open spaces, and recreation facilities
- Repairing potholes and failed streets that have fallen into disrepair
- Maintaining emergency medical and fire protection services
- Providing police and crime prevention programs
- Addressing traffic issues and homelessness
- Making changes to reduce environmental impacts and reduce stormwater pollution
- Improving sidewalks, bike lanes, and roads to reduce traffic congestion and improve safety
The City of San Mateo is committed to accountability and transparency with local funds. A local funding measure would include a clear system of fiscal accountability, including:
- By law, all funds raised by the measure must stay in San Mateo for local uses only
- No funds may be taken away by the State
- Annual independent audits and public disclosure of spending are required
This tax is customarily split between the property seller and buyer. It is a one-time tax on the transaction paid only when a property is sold or transferred. Based on recent sales, an increase to the City’s existing real estate transfer tax for properties sold at $10 million or more is only expected to impact less than 1.0% of properties sold or transferred in the City.
Yes. Cities including Berkeley, Oakland, Richmond, San Jose, and San Francisco have implemented real estate transfer taxes with tiered rates based on the sale value of a property.
The San Mateo City Council has placed the measure on the November 2022 ballot.
All registered voters living in the City of San Mateo can vote on the measure. Residents can check their voter registration status and update their address at www.registertovote.ca.gov.
This is a general tax measure that would support the City’s General Fund and require a simple majority of voter approval.