California Proposition 69, Mandatory Reporting of AIDS as a Communicable Disease (June 1988)

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California Proposition 69, of the AIDS Act of 1988, was on the June 7, 1988 statewide primary ballot in California as an initiated state statute where it was defeated.

Proposition 69 would have declared that AIDS -- and the "condition of being a carrier" of any virus that causes AIDS -- are communicable diseases. It also would have required the State Department of Health Services to add these conditions to the list of diseases that must be reported. Proposition 69 would have required the reporting of the names of those who are "carriers of the AIDS virus," in addition to those who have the disease.

Election results

Proposition 69
ResultVotesPercentage
Defeatedd No3,718,77668.64%
Yes 1,746,780 31.96%

Text of measure

Title

The ballot title was:

Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome--AIDS. Initiative Statute.

Summary

The official summary said:

"Declares that AIDS is an infectious, contagious and communicable disease and that the condition of being a carrier of the HTLV-III virus or other AIDS-causing viral agent is an infectious, contagious and communicable condition. Requires each be placed on the list of reportable diseases and conditions maintained by the Department of Health Services. Provides each is subject to quarantine and isolation statutes and regulations. Provides that Health Services Department personnel and all health officers shall fulfill the duties and obligations set forth in specified statutory provisions to preserve the public health from AIDS."

Fiscal impact

See also: Fiscal impact statement

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

"The net fiscal impact of this measure is unknown -- and could vary greatly, depending on what actions are taken by health officers and the courts to implement it. If current practices used for the control of AIDS are continued, there would be no substantial change in direct costs. If the measure were interpreted to require changes in AIDS control measures by state local health officers, depending upon the level of activity, the cost of implementing it could range from millions to hundreds of millions of dollars."

They elaborated on the fiscal impact as follows:

  • "The fiscal effect of this measure could vary greatly, depending on how it would be interpreted by state and local health officers and the courts. If current practices used for the control of AIDS are continued, there would be no substantial net change in state and local costs as a direct result of this measure. Under this circumstance, if the AIDS antibody test is interpreted as demonstrating that a person is a carrier of AIDS, the primary effect of this measure would be to require the reporting of persons who are carriers of the virus that causes AIDS."
  • "The fiscal impact could be very substantial, however, if the measure were interpreted to require changes in AIDS control measures by state and local health officers, either voluntarily or as a result of a change in medical knowledge on how the disease is spread, or as a result of court decisions that mandate certain control measures. Ultimately, the fiscal impact would depend on the level of activity that state and local health officers might undertake with respect to (1) identifying, isolating, and quarantining persons infected with the virus, or having the disease, and (2) excluding those persons from schools or food handling positions. The cost of implementing these actions could range from millions of dollars to hundreds of millions of dollars per year."
  • "In summary, the net fiscal impact of this measure is unknown -- and could vary greatly, depending on what actions are taken by health officers and the courts to implement this measure."
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