California Proposition 53, State and Local Infrastructure Investment Act (October 2003)

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California Proposition 53, or the California Twenty-First Century Infrastructure Investment Fund Act, was on the October 7, 2003 special election ballot in California as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment, where it was defeated.

Proposition 53 would have increased the amount of California's General Fund revenue committed to pay-as-you-go capital outlay projects for both state and local governments.

Some of the specific provisions of Proposition 53 were:

  • It would have required that specified percentages of General Fund revenues to be set-aside for acquisition, construction, rehabilitation, modernization, or renovation of infrastructure.
  • Under Proposition 53, expenditures would have to be divided equally between state projects and local projects, other than school and community college district projects, including local street, transportation, water, park, and open space projects.
  • The Proposition 98 school funding guarantee would have been unchanged by Proposition 53.
  • The amount of first set-aside scheduled for 2006-07 would have been 1%; increasing 0.3% annually to 3% and then remaining fixed. Set-asides would have been subject to increase, decrease, or suspension with revenue increases and decreases.

Election results

Proposition 53
Defeatedd No5,318,06563.8%
Yes 3,020,577 36.2%

Constitutional changes

If Proposition 53 had been enacted, it would have added an entirely new article (Article XVIA) to the California Constitution.

Text of measure

Proposition 53 2003.PNG


The ballot title was:

Funds Dedicated for State and Local Infrastructure. Legislative Constitutional Amendment. .


The question on the ballot was:

"Should the state dedicate up to 3% of General Fund revenues annually to fund state and local (excluding school and community college) infrastructure projects?"


Proposition 53's ballot summary said:

"Generally dedicates up to 3% of General Fund revenues annually to fund state and local (excluding school and community college) infrastructure projects. Fiscal Impact: Dedication of General Fund revenues for state and local infrastructure. Potential transfers of $850 million in 2006-07, increasing to several billions of dollars in future years, under specified conditions."

Fiscal impact

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

"Requires dedication of state General Fund revenues for state and local "pay-as-you-go" infrastructure projects. Potential transfers of roughly $850 million in 2006-07, growing to several billions of dollars in future years. (Actual annual transfers could be less--or even zero--in some years due to various adjustments and triggers in the measure.)"

Campaign spending

The campaign over Proposition 53 did not attract a great deal of spending; less than $30,000 was spent by both sides.[1]

Path to the ballot

The California State Legislature voted to put Proposition 53 on the ballot with Assembly Constitutional Amendment 11, Resolution Chapter 185, Statutes of 2002) in accordance with the provisions of Article XVI of the California Constitution.

Votes in legislature to refer to ballot
Chamber Ayes Noes
Assembly 74 3
Senate 29 1

See also

External links