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California Supreme Court removes tax measure from November ballot

SACRAMENTO, California — The California Supreme Court on Thursday struck down a measure from the November ballot that would have made it harder to raise taxes, siding with Gov. Gavin Newsom and his Democratic allies in the state Legislature.

The measure would require voter approval for tax increases passed by the state Legislature. It would also have increased the threshold required for voter approval of certain local government tax increases to a two-thirds vote at the ballot box. Currently, these tax increases can take effect if a simple majority of voters approve them.

The measure would have applied retroactively to most tax increases approved since January 1, 2022. Local governments warned that this would mean they could have lost billions of dollars in revenue previously approved by voters.

Newsom has opposed many tax increases during his time in office. But he sued to block the measure, saying it would hurt local governments and take away the Legislature’s ability to raise taxes.

Supporters of the ballot measure argued that California has become too expensive and that voters need more control over taxes.

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