Measure to split California into 3 states qualifies for November ballot

Sergio Conner
June 14, 2018

There were 419,362 signatures verified by the Secretary of State's Office.

The initiative was spearheaded by a venture capitalist who says regional communities would function better. According to the state's constitution, the ballot initiative needs 365,880 signatures in order to qualify for the November ballot.

California: This will be considered the new state which includes Los Angeles, Ventura, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey and San Benito counties.

-California would have approximately 12.3 million residents and would be centered around Los Angeles County.

"These three states", Draper told the Mercury News last month, "create hope and opportunity for Californians". Those changes address numerous concerns that were raised about the fate of less prosperous states in the six-state model. The upper portion of the state, which would include San Francisco and the state capital Sacramento, would become Northern California. But opponents say creating three states will do nothing to solve California's economic and political problems.

Venture capitalist Tim Draper delivers signatures to push for a vote in 2014
Camera Icon Venture capitalist Tim Draper delivers signatures to push for a vote in 2014

Cal3 noted that if the ballot is passed, Congress would have to approve the state's division. The massive wealth generated by Silicon Valley has driven median household income in Northern California to $63,000.

"Three states will get us better infrastructure, better education and lower taxes", Draper told the Times in an email. "Californians deserve a better future". It could easily be bankrolled by some of the state's most powerful forces, especially those aligned with Democratic leaders. That prospect has been enough to realistically thwart any long-term efforts to add Puerto Rico or the District of Columbia as new states.

"The California state government isn't too big to fail, because it is already failing its citizens in so many crucial ways", Citizens for Cal 3 campaign spokeswoman Peggy Grande said in a statement, according to CNN. A poll by Survey USA in April found that only 17 percent of voters approved of the split, while 72 percent were against.

If it passes, Draper's initiative would instruct the state legislature to begin a likely lengthy and messy process to create three new states of roughly equal population: Northern California, Southern California, and California.

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