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California proposition 1 results and what the 2024 ballot measure would do if approved

What is Prop 1?
What is California Proposition 1 on the 2024 ballot? 03:12

A statewide ballot measure that would overhaul California's mental health care system, primarily through the issuance of nearly $6.4 billion in bonds, remained too close to call as ballot counting continued from Tuesday's election. 

As of Wednesday morning, 50.2% voted yes and 49.8% voted no. Officials will be giving another ballot counting update between 4 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Proposition 1 might be the most consequential proposition on the ballot. If passed, the state would redirect billions in homeless crisis funding to create drug and mental health treatment beds. Gov. Gavin Newsom, Mayor Karen Bass and Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna have all thrown their support behind the bill. 

However, there is also vocal opposition, with critics claiming it will only take away much-needed money from effective health services. 

What does California proposition 1 advocate for?

California proposition 1, also known as the Behavioral Health Services Program and Bond Measure, offers voters a chance to shape the state's approach to mental health and homelessness. It aims to expand access to mental health addiction treatment, create supportive housing, reduce reliance on incarceration and support homeless veterans.

According to the California Voter Guide, proposition 1 "would authorize $6.4 billion in bonds and directs billions more annually to finally fix our broken mental health system and move people permanently off the streets, out of tents and into treatment."

What will happen if proposition 1 passes in California?

Proposition 1 is a bond measure so if voters approve it, there would be no new taxes right away, but the state would have to take on new debt and have to pay it back with interest. Counties would need to change some of their mental health care and drug or alcohol treatment services to focus more on housing and personalized support services.

What are the pros the measure's supporters are highlighting?

Proposition 1 will refocus billions of dollars to expand mental health and addiction services for tens of thousands of Californians each year. It will create housing settings where over 11,000 Californians with the severest mental health needs can live, recover, and stabilize. It will also provide $1 billion to ensure veterans experiencing homelessness, mental health and substance abuse issues are given care.

What are some of the cons the measure's critics are highlighting?

Critics claim that proposition 1 would divert billions of dollars away from other mental health services that are already working. 

"What is going to... we don't agree with all of it, but go get your own money. Don't take it away from the Mental Health Services to do these vague housing interventions," said Paul Simmons, Executive Director of the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance of California. "One of the key issues by the way, is that talking about housing and getting people housing, but the bulk of what's going in is going to be to build facilities to warehouse hospital beds. Hospital beds are not homes."

It will be expensive and cost over $10 billion, but still won't be the "solution" to homelessness.  

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