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SAN JOSE-The president of the San Jose Convention and Visitors Bureau says that supporters of expanding the city’s convention center are seriously considering another ballot measure in two years.

Measure F, which would have raised the city’s hotel tax from 10% to 14% in order to fund a $370 million expansion of the convention center, was approved by 65% of city voters Tuesday, just short of the two-thirds majority needed for passage.

“When you get this close it really shows there is a lot of support for this,” says San Jose Convention and Visitors Bureau President Daniel Fenton. While it is only one day after the election, supporters of expanding the convention center are already thinking about another ballot measure in two years, according to Fenton. “There is a lot of thought about it,” Fenton says.

A spokesman for San Jose Mayor Ron Gonzales, a major supporter of the convention center expansion, says that everyone involved in Measure F realized it would be difficult to win during a recession.

“We knew all along getting two-thirds would be tough in this economy,” says mayoral spokesman David Vossbrink, adding that Gonzales is not ready to commit to another ballot measure at this point.”We’ll be taking a step back to assess what happened.”

The current convention center, located on San Carlos between Market and Almaden streets, has 143,000-sf of exhibit space. According to the city, it is smaller than those in Cincinnati and Rapid City, S.D. Expanding the convention center would have made San Jose’s facility comparable to those in Baltimore and Seattle.

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