Proposed constitutional amendments to go before voters

Voters will consider 10 propositions to amend the Texas Constitution in the election on Tuesday, November 5. The propositions were approved for the ballot by the 86th Legislature earlier this year.

Among the issues to be considered by voters are proposals to:

  • allow municipal judges to hold office in more than one municipality;
  • allow the Texas Water Development Board to issue more project bonds;
  • allow temporary property tax exemptions after a disaster;
  • prohibit a state individual income tax;
  • dedicate sporting goods sales tax revenue for parks and historic sites;
  • increase the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute’s bond authority;
  • allow increased distributions to the Available School Fund;
  • create the Flood Infrastructure Fund;
  • exempt precious metals held in Texas depositories from property taxes; and
  • allow retired law enforcement animal transfer without a fee.

The Texas Legislature proposes amendments to the state constitution in joint resolutions, which must be approved by at least a two-thirds vote of the membership of each house. A joint resolution includes the ballot wording of the proposed amendment and a specific election date. The Texas secretary of state conducted a random drawing to assign a number to each proposition for this year’s election.

Constitutional amendments take effect when the official vote canvass confirms statewide majority approval unless a later date is specified. Some amendments are self-enacting, and others required the Legislature to enact “enabling” legislation. If voters reject the amendment, any enabling legislation dependent on it does not take effect.

More information about the proposed amendments for the upcoming election, including ballot language and arguments for and against each measure, can be found in the HRO’s focus report, Constitutional amendments proposed for November 2019 ballot.

By Janet Elliott

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