Prop. 30 | Prop. 31 | Prop. 32 | Prop. 33 | Prop. 34 | Prop. 35 | Prop. 36 | Prop. 37 | Prop. 38 | Prop. 39 | Prop. 40
Temporary Taxes to Fund State Programs

Proposition 30 temporarily increases the state sales tax rate and the personal income tax rates for taxpayers with incomes above a certain level. The revenues generated would be used to fund schools and public safety programs. The state’s 2012-13 budget plan—approved by the Governor and the Legislature in June 2012—assumes passage of this measure.

Official Election Results:

Yes: 7,014,114 [55.4%]
No: 5,653,637 [44.6%]

Pro / Con


Proponents of Proposition 30 believe that the measure will prevent billions in school cuts this year. They claim that Prop. 30 will establish a constitutional guarantee for public safety funding which can be altered only with voter approval. Proponents claim that Prop. 30 is essential in balancing the budget.


Yes on Prop. 30 [Website archived in Internet Archive]


Opponents of Proposition 30 claim that the measure's tax hikes will not guarantee additional money for education. They advocate reforming schools and the public pension system instead of raising taxes.


No New Taxes [Website archived in Internet Archive]

Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association



Field Poll #2431, November 1, 2012
“California's competing tax initiatives while support for Prop. 30 is below 50% it continues to lead. Prop. 38 now trailing by a double digit margin.”

USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences/Los Angeles Times Frequency Questionnaire, October 15-21, 2012
“If the election were held today, would you vote yes to support or no to oppose Proposition 30?”

PPIC Statewide Survey: Californians and their Government, October, 2012 
"When read the ballot title and label for Proposition 30, 48 percent of likely voters say they would vote yes, 44 percent would vote no, and 8 percent are undecided."

SurveyUSA Election Poll #19645 - 09/12/2012 (pg.4)
"On Proposition 30, which would raise the sales tax to pay for education and public safety, are you ...? Certain to vote yes? Certain to vote no? Or not certain?"

Reason-Rupe Public Opinion Survey, October 11th-15th, 2012 (pg. 3)
"Proposition 30 is called the “Temporary Taxes to Fund Education, Guaranteed Local Public Safety Funding Initiative.” It increases personal income taxes on households making more than $250,000 a year for seven years and increases sales taxes by a quarter percent on all Californians for four years. This would raise about $6 billion in annual tax revenue and would allocate it primarily toward K-12 education and community colleges. If the election were today, would you vote yes or no on Prop. 30?"

USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences/Los Angeles Times Frequency Questionnaire, September 17-23, 2012
“If the election were held today, would you vote yes to support or no to oppose Proposition 30?”

PPIC Statewide Survey: Californians and their Government, September, 2012 
"When read the Proposition 30 ballot title and label, 52 percent of likely voters say they would vote yes, 40 percent would vote no, and 8 percent are undecided."

Field Poll # 2425, September 20, 2012
“California’s tax initiatives: Prop. 30 (Brown) leads, but support dips to 51% as undecided increase.”

USC Education Survey August 2012 – Proposition 30 (pg.6)
Do you support or oppose this ballot initiative?

USC Education Survey,August 2012
“Do you support or oppose this ballot initiative?”

PPIC Statewide Survey: Californians and their Government, April 3-10, 2012  (pg. 8)
"Governor Brown and others have proposed a tax initiative to deal with the state’s multibillion dollar budget gap. The initiative calls for a temporary increase in both the state sales tax and the state personal income tax on wealthy Californians. When read the ballot title and a brief summary, 54 percent of likely voters say they would vote yes on the initiative, 39 percent say no, and 6 percent say they are undecided."

PPIC Statewide Survey: Californians and their Government, March 14-20, 2012 
"A majority (56%) say they would vote yes on Brown’s tax initiative, with 38 percent saying they would vote no and 7 percent undecided."

Field Poll # 2413, June 9, 2012 
“Voters favor Governor Brown's tax initiative 52% to 35%, but evenly divided on munger plan. Seven in ten hold similar voting preferences toward both measures.”.




The state's general fund is funded by several revenue sources, including sales tax and personal income tax. Currently, the average sales tax rate is around 8 percent. Typically, a portion of the sales tax revenues goes to the general fund while the rest is allocated to local governments. The personal income tax rates in California range from 1 percent to 9.3%. The sales tax Money

and personal income tax contributed $76.4 billion during the 2010-11 fiscal year. Proposition 30 would increase the sales tax rate for four full years, from January 1, 2013 to December 31, 2016. The rate would be increased by one-quarter cent for every dollar of products purchased. The personal income tax rate would be increased from 2012 through 2018. As taxable income increases, the tax rate would increase.


The Legislative Analyst's office estimates that Proposition 30 could bring in around $6 billion for the years in which the sales tax and personal income tax increases are in effect. The LAO estimates that smaller revenue increases are likely in years when the higher tax rates are phased in (2011-12) and when the rates are phased out (2018-19). Revenues that come from upper-income taxpayers may fluctuate year to year as upper-income taxpayers tend to invest more in the stock market and the rise and fall of the economy. Because of this, revenues raised by Proposition 30 are not easily estimated.Jerry Brown (photo: Neon Tommy, Wikimedia Commons)

School Funding

The revenues generated by Proposition 30,  when added to school funds guaranteed by California's Proposition 98 education mandate (see Proposition 98: a Primer [pdf] from the California Legislative Analysts Office, Feb. 2005) would potentially add billions of dollars each year for education. The measure requires that the new revenues would be deposited into the Education Protection Account (EPA). Of the new revenues, 89 percent would go to California schools and 11 percent to state community colleges. No school district would receive less than $200 in EPA funds per student and no community college district would receive less than $100 in EPA funds per student.

June Budget Plan

The Legislature and the Governor adopted a budget plan in June 2012 which would rely on voter approval of Proposition 30. Once the measure is approved, the budget plan allocates the resulting revenues to be spent on various state programs including a large portion allocated to pay for K-14 education expenses. The plan increases funding for schools and community colleges in 2012-13 by $6.6 billion over 2011-12. The majority of the increase would pay for educations costs from the previous year and delays in some education payments from this year. 

The June plan would also limit spending in certain health and social services programs as well as lowering the amount of state employee compensation.

If Proposition 30 does not pass, the June plan requires that spending be reduced by $6 billion. $5.4 billion in K-14 education and $500 million for public universities would make up the bulk of the reduction. Overall, the failure of Proposition 30 would mean lower state revenues from 2012-2019.

Local Government Programs

Proposition 30 adds provisions to the state Constitiution involving the 2011 transfer of some programs from state to local government control. Specifically, Prop. 30 requires the state to continue to pay revenues previously directed to local governments in 2011, for the cost of transferred program responsibilities. Local governments would not be required to implement any newly created state laws which would increase the costs of adminitering programs from the 2011 transfer, unless the state provided money for the increased cost. Similarly, Prop. 30 requires the state to pay a portion of any costs that any court actions and/or changes in federal laws might put on programs from the 2011 transfer. The state would be relieved, however, for reimbursing local governments for any state mandates placed on them, as is now the case under state law. Finally, the existing law that requires states to reimburse local governments for the cost of open meeting procedures for public meetings, would be overturned. 

What Happens if Voters Approve Both Proposition 30 and Proposition 38?

If provisions of two measures approved on the same statewide ballot conflict, the Constitution specifies that the provisions of the measure receiving more “yes” votes prevail. Proposition 30 and Proposition 38 on this statewide ballot both increase personal income tax (PIT) rates and, as such, could be viewed as conflicting. Proposition 30 and Proposition 38 both contain sections intended to clarify which provisions are to become effective if both measures pass:

• If Proposition 30 Receives More Yes Votes. Proposition 30 contains a section indicating that its provisions would prevail in their entirety and none of the provisions of any other measure increasing PIT rates—in this case Proposition 38—would go into effect.

• If Proposition 38 Receives More Yes Votes. Proposition 38 contains a section indicating that its provisions would prevail and the tax rate provisions of any other measure affecting sales or PIT rates—in this case Proposition 30—would not go into effect. Under this scenario, the spending reductions known as the “trigger cuts” would take effect as a result of Proposition 30’s tax increases not going into effect.

- California. California General Election Official Voter Information Guide. Sacramento: California Secretary of State Elections Division, 2012. Online.

Voter Resources

Voter Resources

Official CA Documents

Official Voter Information Guide

Campaign Finance Information

Cal-Access Check out how much money is being raised and spent to pass or defeat this measure, and where the money is coming from.

Cal-Access Ballot Measure Summary Data Search Select "General 06 November 2012" and "Proposition 030" from the drop-down menus. Cal-Access provides financial information supplied by state candidates, donors, lobbyists, and others.

Nonpartisan Analyses


California Initiative Review - Pacific McGeorge Capital Center for Public Law and Policy.

EdSource: Propositions 30 and 38 At a Glance

League of Women Voters: Pros and Cons

Maplight: Voter's Edge









News and Opinion
Updated: 1 sec ago

A parent’s outlook on child starting kindergarten

Wed, 2014-08-27 19:30
A parent's perspective on education, child's first day of kindergarten.

More classes at OCC make first day easier

Mon, 2014-08-25 18:51
Students hustled to classes for the first day of the fall semester at Orange Coast College on Monday morning, but unlike in previous years, most were confident a seat would be waiting for them ...

The Highest State And Local Income Taxes On A $1 Million Income: Post Election 2012

Tue, 2014-08-19 08:13
With the passage of Proposition 30 on Election Day, California boasts the top state income tax rate of 13.3% and moves up in the rankings of states taking the biggest bite out of a $1 million salary.

Fall semester starts with more courses at Valley community colleges

Mon, 2014-08-11 19:20
Thousands of students headed back to school at community colleges around the Valley Monday for the start of the fall semester.