This Week in Texas: July 29, 2009

Posted July 29, 2009 in The Mignon Memo

There will be 11 proposed constitutional amendments on the ballot in Texas on November 3rd this year. Since it was enacted in 1876, the Texas State Constitution has been amended more than 400 times. In order for an amendment to appear on the ballot, the proposal must pass by a two-thirds vote in both the Texas House and Senate. The proposals must receive a majority vote to be amended to the constitution. The last day to register to vote in November’s election is October 5. Prior to each election that has proposed constitutional amendments on the ballot, the Texas Legislative Council publishes Analyses of Proposed Constitutional Amendments. The publication, available in September, includes the text of each joint resolution, ballot language, background and analysis of the proposal, and arguments for and against passage of the measure. Once it is available, we will send you the link for your review.

Texas Secretary of State Hope Andrade held a drawing Tuesday to determine the ballot order for the propositions and to call attention to the upcoming election. Below is a complete listing of the amendments:

Proposition 1 (HJR 132)

“The constitutional amendment authorizing the financing, including through tax increment financing, of the acquisition by municipalities and counties of buffer areas or open spaces adjacent to a military installation for the prevention of encroachment or for the construction of roadways, utilities, or other infrastructure to protect or promote the mission of the military installation.”

Proposition 2 (HJR 36-1)

“The constitutional amendment authorizing the legislature to provide for the ad valorem taxation of a residence homestead solely on the basis of the property’s value as a residence homestead.”

Proposition 3 (HRJ 36-3)

“The constitutional amendment providing for uniform standards and procedures for the appraisal of property for ad valorem tax purposes.”

Proposition 4 (HJR 14-2)

“The constitutional amendment establishing the national research university fund to enable emerging research universities in this state to achieve national prominence as major research universities and transferring the balance of the higher education fund to the national research university fund.”

Proposition 5 (HJR 36-2)

“The constitutional amendment authorizing the legislature to authorize a single board of equalization for two or more adjoining appraisal entities that elect to provide for consolidated equalizations.”

Proposition 6 (HJR 116)

“The constitutional amendment authorizing the Veterans’ Land Board to issue general obligation bonds in amounts equal to or less than amounts previously authorized.”

Proposition 7 (HJR 127)

“The constitutional amendment to allow an officer or enlisted member of the Texas State Guard or other state militia or military force to hold other civil offices.”

Proposition 8 (HJR 7)

“The constitutional amendment authorizing the state to contribute money, property, and other resources for the establishment, maintenance, and operation of veterans hospitals in this state.”

Proposition 9 (HJR 102)

“The constitutional amendment to protect the right of the public, individually and collectively, to access and use the public beaches bordering the seaward shore of the Gulf of Mexico.”

Proposition 10 (HJR 85)

“The constitutional amendment to provide that elected members of the governing boards of emergency services districts may serve terms not to exceed four years.”

Proposition 11 (HJR 14-1)

“The constitutional amendment to prohibit the taking, damaging, or destroying of private property for public use unless the action is for the ownership, use, and enjoyment of the property by the State, a political subdivision of the State, the public at large, or entities granted the power of eminent domain under law or for the elimination of urban blight on a particular parcel of property, but not for certain economic development or enhancement of tax revenue purposes, and to limit the legislature’s authority to grant the power of eminent domain to an entity.”