Both sides in the Measure K lawsuit waived their right to oral arguments before an appeals court, meaning a decision on the tax’s legality will be handed down by the court in the next 90 days, according to Yuba County Counsel Mike Ciccozzi.

The parties had until July 12 to request oral arguments after an appeals court notified both sides that it was prepared to make a ruling. With both sides waiving their right to arguments, it is expected that a decision will be announced within the next few months, maybe sooner.

Measure K passed in 2018 with a simple majority of 53 percent and raised the sales tax by 1 percentage point in unincorporated Yuba County. In December 2018, the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, along with Yuba County citizens Charlie Matthews and John Mistler, challenged the measure, arguing that it should have been classified as a special tax, which requires a two-thirds majority to pass.

A Yuba County Superior Court judge ruled that the measure should have been a special tax because the language of the measure mentioned specific uses for funds collected, such as public safety services. The county appealed the superior court’s decision. The appeals court will either confirm the superior court’s decision or overturn it.

The tax went into effect in April 2019, while the lawsuit was pending. As of July 7, the county has collected approximately $13.1 million through the tax. 

Money collected from Measure K is being placed in a trust that remains untouched until a final ruling is made.

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