Voters passed a sentencing reform initiative in Tuesday's election, but rejected three propositions related to health care insurance rate changes, medical negligence and Indian gaming compacts.
Proposition 47, which requires misdemeanor rather than felony sentences for certain theft and drug-possession crimes, passed with 57.5 percent of the vote with 18 percent of precincts reporting. Proponents of the measure argued the softer sentencing will reduce the prison population and give drug addicts a chance to avoid prison time in favor of treatment.
Voters rejected Proposition 48, which would have approved millions of dollars in tribal gaming compacts between the state and the North Fork Rancheria of Mono Indians and the Wiyot tribe to address costs related to the operation of a new casino.
Proposition 45 also failed, by a gap of more than 20 percent with 18 percent of precincts reporting. The measure would have required health insurance companies to publicly disclose rate changes and allowed California’s insurance commissioner to control rates for health insurance. Supporters said the initiative would stem skyrocketing healthcare costs.
Proposition 46, a wide-ranging initiative that included raising the limit on pain and suffering damages in medical malpractice lawsuits, was also defeated Tuesday. Supporters had said the proposition would have detected and deterred medical negligence, over-prescribing of prescription drugs and drug and alcohol abuse by doctors and promoted justice for people who don't have an income -- including retirees, children and stay-at-home parents -- who are victims of medical malpractice.
Prop 46 would've also required random drug and alcohol testing of doctors, and mandated health care practitioners consult the state prescription drug history database before prescribing certain controlled substances.
City News Service contributed to this report.