NOVEMBER BALLOT WILL INCLUDE CITY-RELATED PROPOSITIONS

The November 3, 2009, constitutional amendment ballot will include five city-related propositions. Each was placed on the ballot by the passage of a joint resolution by the 81st Texas Legislature. The propositions are described below.

Proposition 1 (H.J.R. 132) - passage of this proposition will allow cities and counties to finance the acquisition of buffer areas around military installations for the prevention of encroachment or for the construction of roads, utilities, or other infrastructure to protect the military installation’s mission.

Proposition 2 (H.J.R. 36) - if passed, this proposition will provide that the ad valorem taxation of a residence homestead must be based solely on the property’s value as a residence homestead, regardless of the otherwise “highest and best use” of the property.

(Note: passage of this proposition will mean that Section 2 of H.B. 3613, passed by the 81st Legislature and signed by the governor, will go into effect on January 1, 2010.)

Proposition 3 (H.J.R. 36) - this proposition, if passed by the voters, will provide for “uniform standards and procedures for the appraisal of property for ad valorem tax purposes,” meaning that two or more adjoining appraisal districts may consolidate appraisal review board operations by interlocal contract.

(Note: passage of this proposition will mean that H.B. 3611, passed by the 81st Legislature and signed into law, will go into effect on January 1, 2010.)

Proposition 5 (H.J.R. 36) - passage of this proposition will amend the Texas Constitution to provide that administrative and judicial enforcement of uniform standards and procedures for appraisal of property for property tax purposes “shall be prescribed by general law” and shall not originate in individual counties, as the constitution currently provides.

Proposition 11 (H.J.R. 14) - if passed, this proposition will amend the Texas Constitution to provide that no person’s property shall be taken, damaged, or destroyed for or applied to a “public use” without adequate compensation being made, unless by the consent of such person, and only if the taking, damage, or destruction is necessary for: (1) the ownership, use, and enjoyment of the property, notwithstanding an incidental use, by the state, a political subdivision of the state, or the public at large or an entity granted the power of eminent domain under law; or (2) the elimination of urban blight on a particular parcel of property. The proposition also provides that a “public use” does not include the taking of property for transfer to a private entity for the primary purpose of economic development or the enhancement of tax revenues, and that on or after January 1, 2010, the legislature may enact a law granting the power of eminent domain to an entity only with a two-thirds vote of all members elected to each house.

Six additional propositions aren’t directly city-related. They are the following:

Proposition 4 - establishing a “national research university fund.”

Proposition 6 - authorizing the Veterans’ Land Board to issue bonds.

Proposition 7 - allowing a member of the Texas State Guard to hold another office.

Proposition 8 - authorizing the state to contribute money and other resources for veterans’ hospitals.

Proposition 9 - protecting the right of the public to access and use public beaches.

Proposition 10 - relating to the terms of governing boards of emergency services districts.

TML member cities may use the material herein for any purpose.
No other person or entity may reproduce, duplicate, or distribute any part of this document without the written authorization of the
Texas Municipal League.

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