Voters in Sacramento were recently given an extraordinary opportunity – they went to the polls on Tuesday, June 7, to determine the future of the local Rancho Seco nuclear power station. By a vote of 53.4% to 46.6%, voters decided to shut it down. This marked the first time voters have ordered the closure of an operating nuclear power station.
Plant operators said they would start shutting down the plant on Wednesday, June 8. The activist group Public Citizen released a statement saying that the vote "marks the beginning of the end for nuclear power" in the U.S.
More extraordinary still, the vote was not binding on the Sacramento Municipal Utility District, which owns the plant. And yet a majority of the District’s Board members (who are themselves elected officials) had promised to abide by the will of the people.
From an Associated Press report in the Christian Science Monitor, 6/8/89.