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A polling station at Richmond High. Photo by Angeline Bernabe.

Final results: RPA sweeps City Council race, Measure L passes

on November 9, 2016

With all 53 precincts reported and each ballot counted, the divisive 2016 Richmond election has drawn to a close.

The city elected two new City Councilmembers in Ben Choi and Melvin Willis, and re-elected another, Jael Myrick. Choi and Willis are members of the Richmond Progressive Alliance. The group now has five members—a majority—on the Council.

Willis and Choi garnered 15 and 13.5 percent of the vote, respectively, leading the field of nine candidates. Myrick collected 12.9 percent.

The three winners edged out Richmond’s longest-serving councilmember, incumbent Nat Bates, who lost his seat by just over 500 votes.

Richmond voters also approved Measure L, instituting rent control and just cause for eviction. Measure L was this election’s flashpoint, the object of raucous debates and an influx of campaign contributions from a real estate industry that strongly opposed it.

Despite the hundreds of thousands spent to defeat it, Measure L passed with 64 percent of the vote.

However, Measure M, a new property transfer tax, did not pass. Seventy percent of voters said ‘No’ to the little-discussed ballot measure.

Voter turnout in Contra Costa County was slightly more than 50 percent, just one percent greater than turnout in 2014.

Full reports to come throughout the day on Wednesday.


  1. Sal Nahshal on November 10, 2016 at 6:54 am

    Measure L Passed ! Well now people are all very happy in Richmond? Ok lets just see how thats going to benefit a city thats torn and ripped with Crime corruption and everything else that has to do with Bad, And now add Rent control and this city will get worst.

    • Confidential Commenter on November 10, 2016 at 7:56 am

      Unfortunately Sal, ‘the people’ sometimes react emotionally rather than rationally and make unwise choices on election day. Just look at who going to be president and run the Congress in January if you do not believe what I say. The more educated voters in Alameda rejected their extremist Measure L type rent control ordinance and instead chose the more rational one.
      Unfortunately Richmond voters will have to learn the hard way they didn’t choose so wisely. That’s the way it goes.

    • Eddie Percoats on November 10, 2016 at 8:07 am

      All Richmond owners of these rental units running around here going up on the rent when they want to and not fixing a damn thing in their units thank you Richmond voters measure L is what we need thank God

      • Confidential Commenter on November 10, 2016 at 8:55 am

        And Measure L is what you’ll get, along with higher rents to pay for the higher costs.
        Glad your happy with your choice, it’s your money after all.

  2. Rigzin Namgyal on November 18, 2016 at 7:05 pm

    Congratulation to Richmond city council and all richmond renters. Measure L is the right blessing at most crucial time because we dont want to be victims of greedy landlords like in san Francisco. Thank God Measure L is passed for Richmond with 64% yes vote. We are breathing a sigh of relief.

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