Austin

The Texas State Capitol in Austin.

The eight proposed amendments to the Texas Constitution, as approved by the two-thirds of the members of the Texas Senate and the Texas House of Representatives during the 2021 regular legislative session. On Nov. 2, Texas voters can ratify the following with a majority vote:

Proposition 1 — “The constitutional amendment authorizing the professional sports team charitable foundations of organizations sanctioned by the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association or the Women’s Professional Rodeo Association to conduct charitable raffles at rodeo venues.”

  • Under current law, only professional sports team charitable foundations can conduct raffles. Because raffles have become an integral fundraiser for non-profits, this law seeks to expand that opportunity to include rodeo charitable foundations.

Proposition 2 — “The constitutional amendment authorizing a county to finance the development or redevelopment of transportation or infrastructure in unproductive, underdeveloped, or blighted areas in the county.”

  • It grants counties authority to issue bonds or notes, financed by property tax increases, for infrastructure and transportation developments in unincorporated areas. Although municipalities currently have this authority, counties do not.

Proposition 3 — “The constitutional amendment to prohibit this state or a political subdivision of this state from prohibiting or limiting religious services of religious organizations.”

  • Stemming from stay-at-home orders and capacity limits on businesses issued during the COVID-19 pandemic, it bans state and local officials from prohibiting or imposing occupancy limits on religious

services during natural disasters or pandemics.

Proposition 4 — “The constitutional amendment changing the eligibility requirements for a justice of the supreme court, a judge of the court of criminal appeals, a justice of a court of appeals, and a district judge.”

  • Clarifies qualifications of selections as chief justice or associate justice to the Texas Supreme Court by stating at the time of election, the candidate must be a citizen of the United States and the state of Texas, rather than separate residency citizenship distinctions as being from the United States and Texas; have served as a lawyer licensed in Texas for at least 10 years; is licensed and practiced law in the state or served as judge of a state or county court for a combined total of 10 years, and have not had a law license revoked, suspended or subjected to a probated suspension.
  • It requires district judges to hold dual distinctions as U.S. citizens and Texas residents,, have served as a practicing lawyer or court judge in Texas or a combination of both for at least eight years, and also not had a law license revoked, suspended or subjected to a probated suspension.

Proposition 5 —  “The constitutional amendment providing additional powers to the State Commission on Judicial Conduct with respect to candidates for judicial office.”

  • Allows the State Commission on Judicial Conduct (SCJC) to conduct investigations into candidates running for state judicial offices, not just current judicial officeholders.

Proposition 6 ––  “The constitutional amendment establishing a right for residents of certain facilities to designate an essential caregiver for in-person visitation.”

  • Allows certain nursing-home and assisted-living center residents to designate one person to serve as their caregiver and eligible for in-person visitation privileges.

Proposition 7 —  “The constitutional amendment to allow the surviving spouse of a person who is disabled to receive a limitation on school district ad valorem taxes on the spouse’s residence homestead if the spouse is 55 years of age or older at the time of the person’s death.”

  • Allows a surviving spouse to continue receiving limitations on school district property taxes if the deceased spouse was 55 or older when they died.

Proposition 8 —  “The constitutional amendment authorizing the legislature to provide for an exemption from ad valorem taxation of all or part of the market value of the residence homestead of the surviving spouse of a member of the armed services of the United States who is killed or fatally injured in the line of duty.”

  • It grants a property tax exemption to the surviving spouse of an armed service member killed or injured in the line of duty. Currently the law applies only to service members killed or injured while in combat, making the surviving spouse ineligible to receive the exemption.

For more information and resources for voting in Texas, visit VoteTexas.gov.

 

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