This section of our blog provides information about the citizen-led effort to incorporate Arden Arcade that culminated in a measure being placed before local voters in 2010. See Sacramento LAFCO's pages for more details.
There was a proposal (Measure D) on the November 2010 ballot for Arden Arcade to become a city. Measure D was accompanied by candidates for the City Council if the voters approved the city's formation. The Measure failed by a margin of 3-1, largely because of a well-organized, well-funded opposition campaign called "Stay Sacramento" built around the falsehood that taxes would skyrocket if the County's municipal role was instead to be carried out by the new city. The opposition campaign was spearheaded by now-convicted felon/voyeur Michael Lyon and now-former member of the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District Board, Michael Duveneck (an Arden Park resident). The Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 447 (apparently at the behest of then-Mayor Kevin Johnson of Sacramento) paid for a hit-piece mailer sent to voters just before the election. The CHP Union joined in the opposition - they were said to be afraid of losing control over our local traffic "enforcement" activity. Supporters of Measure D were a group of ordinary citizens - local residents who sought a more responsive municipal government. The firefighter's union at the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District was on the side of the proponents. It was said they feared the City of Sacramento Fire Department would seek an incursion into their territory.
The 2010 ballot was long, with a US Senate seat, Congressional seats, all the state's constitutional offices and 10 ballot measures up for election, along with a lot of local offices. Measure D was buried at the back end of the ballot. It had been difficult for local voters to discover much about the proposal, given that local TV was full of ads for the US Senate (Barbara Boxer vs Carly Fiorina) and Governor's (Jerry Brown vs Meg Whitman) contests and in light of the well-funded "Stay Sacramento" campaign. When all the votes were counted, the attempt for local self-determination had been soundly defeated. The County remained in control of Arden Arcade's municipal affairs. Instead of our 92,186-resident community having a 5-member city council (1 electee per 18,437 residents) we were left as a minority (less than 1/3) of the District 3 Supervisor's fiefdom of 284,200 residents.
Some people in the community took the results to mean that incorporation, having been rejected in 2010, should never, ever be considered again. Others pointed out that proposed new cities typically need multiple ballot measures before they can incorporate. Do you think nothing ever changes and things are just hunky-dory as they are? Or, if you were here in 2010, are you comfortable with how things are going nowadays? Or, maybe you are one of the by-now majority of voters did not get to cast a vote on the incorporation measure because you either did not live here then or you were a resident then who was not old enough to vote. How would you feel if municipal incorporation was on the ballot again?