Voters Approve Most Tax Initiatives in Southern California

Four of the five local tax measures found throughout Southern California were, according to unofficial results, approved by wide margins Tuesday night, possibly a sign that voters understand the cash-strapped nature of their local governments.

Two successful measures -- Measure L in Kern County's Ridgecrest and Measure U in Santa Maria of Santa Barbara County -- were sales tax initiatives to help preserve city services.

A similar proposal, Measure J in Stanton of Orange County, failed. Should that have passed, how the money would have been used was asked in Measure K, an advisory measure, which was approved by 42-point margin. City officials told KCET they are still awaiting the final tally when results becomes certified. The city of 38,000 saw a voter turnout of about 6 percent, according to preliminary results.

In L.A. County, two measures that earned approval were asked for tax extensions that didn't apply to the majority of residents. Measure H sustained the Transient Occupancy Tax, which affects travelers staying hotels, and Measure L kept a tax on gross receipts for landfill operators. Both go to " fund essential County general fund services," according to ballot language.

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