Californians favour emergency funds ballot measure: Media

SAN FRANCISCO - California voters were on track to approve a ballot measure on Tuesday that was designed to strengthen how the state shores up emergency funds, local media reported.

The so-called Rainy Day Fund act requires the state to save surplus revenues to be used during emergencies, budget deficits, or to pay down debt.

With 35 per cent of precincts reporting, the California Secretary of State's office reported that over 70 per cent of voters supported the measure. The Los Angeles Times and local television stations projected that the measure would pass.

Credit rating agencies are likely to look favourably on the measure's passage. Fitch Ratings called Proposition 2, otherwise known as the Rainy Day Budget Stabilization Fund Act, "an important measure for the state" that "could help smooth the volatile tax revenues that have dogged the state budget in recent years."

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services predicted the proposal would be "a positive credit development," that would set "aside windfall revenue" for use when state forecasts fall short.

Roughly half of voters favoured the rainy day fund measure as of late-October, according to the Public Policy Institute of California.