California Proposition 50, Bonds for Water Projects (2002)

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California Proposition 50, or the Water Quality, Supply and Safe Drinking Water Projects Act, was on the November 5, 2002 statewide ballot in California as an initiated state statute, where it was approved.

Proposition 50 approved issuing $3.4 billion in general obligation bonds for water projects.

Election results

Proposition 50
Approveda Yes 3,882,118 55.3%

Text of measure

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The ballot title was:

Water Quality, Supply and Safe Drinking Water Projects. Coastal Wetlands Purchase and Protection. Bonds. Initiative Statute.


Proposition 50 asked the question:

"Should the state borrow three billion four hundred forty million dollars ($3,440,000,000) through the sale of general obligation bonds for a variety of water projects including coastal protection, the CALFED Bay-Delta Program, integrated regional water management, safe drinking water, and water quality?"


The ballot summary said:

"Authorizes $3,440,000,000 general obligation bonds, to be repaid from state's General Fund, to fund a variety of water projects including: specified CALFED Bay-Delta Program projects including urban and agricultural water use efficiency projects; grants and loans to reduce Colorado River water use; purchasing, protecting and restoring coastal wetlands near urban areas; competitive grants for water management and water quality improvement projects; development of river parkways; improved security for state, local and regional water systems; and grants for desalination and drinking water disinfecting projects."

Fiscal impact

See also: Fiscal impact statement

The fiscal estimate provided by the California Legislative Analyst's Office said:

  • State costs to repay the bonds, which, if the bonds were issued with a maturity of 25 years, would equal approximately $5.7 billion to pay principal ($3.44 billion) and interest ($2.24 billion), with payments of approximately $227 million per year.
  • Reduction in local property tax revenues, ranging from a few million dollars to roughly $10 million annually, about one-half of which would be offset by state payments to schools to make up their revenue loss.
  • Unknown costs to state and local governments to operate or maintain properties or projects purchased or developed with these bond funds.

See also

External links