Proposed Constitutional Amendments6 of 22 Amendments Address Property Taxes
On Saturday, September 13, Texas voters will decide on 22 constitutional amendments proposed by the 78th Texas Legislature. Of these 22, the six amendments below address some area of property taxation.
Proposition 2 is from House Joint Resolution (H.J.R.) 51 and would amend the Texas Constitution to allow the redemption period for a mineral interest to be two years, for a purchaser’s deed filed for record on or after January 1, 2004.
If passed, it would implement House Bill (H.B.) 1125 to extend the redemption period for a mineral interest sold for unpaid taxes at a tax sale. The owner of a mineral interest could redeem from the purchaser (other that a taxing unit) the mineral interest on or before the second anniversary of the date that the purchaser’s deed was recorded.
Currently, such an owner has six months to redeem the mineral interest. The change would treat a mineral interest the same as a residence homestead or qualified agricultural land.
The ballot reads: "The constitutional amendment to establish a two-year period for the redemption of a mineral interest sold for unpaid ad valorem taxes at a tax sale."
Proposition 3 is H.J.R 55 and addresses religious organization property leased to a school or land used for expansion of a religious facility.
Its enabling legislation is H.B. 1278 which grants property owned by a religious organization an exemption if the property is leased for use as a school or land that is owned with the intent of expanding or constructing a religious facility. If the land (or a part of it) is sold or otherwise transferred to another person, then a rollback tax is imposed for the five years preceding the year of the sale, plus seven percent interest, for each year the land received the exemption.
The ballot reads: "The constitutional amendment to authorize the legislature to exempt from ad valorem taxation property owned by a religious organization that is leased for use as a school or that is owned with the intent of expanding or constructing a religious facility."
Senate Joint Resolution (S.J.R) 25 addresses Proposition 5, exempting travel trailers from school taxes.
If it passes, then Senate Bill (S.B.) 510 amends Property Tax Code Section 11.14 to exempt personal property not held for the production of income, except for "a structure that a person owns which is substantially affixed to real estate and is used or occupied as a residential dwelling."
S.J.R. 25 includes a "temporary provision" to permit the retroactive application of the law to January 1, 2002. The law states that it applies to 2002 taxes, if the amendment passes.
The ballot reads: "The constitutional amendment to authorize the legislature to exempt from ad valorem taxation travel trailers not held or used for the production of income."
Proposition 13 is from H.J.R 16 and would allow a county, city, or special district to limit taxes for homeowners disabled or 65 years of age or older.
H.B. 136 is the enabling legislation. It allows a county, city, or junior college district to place a tax limitation on the homesteads of senior citizens and disabled homeowners. The taxing unit’s governing body or its voters, by petition and election, may adopt the tax limitation.
Currently, only homeowners 65 or older receive a school tax limitation, also called tax ceiling or tax freeze, on their homestead taxes.
H.B. 136 also provides that the homeowners with the tax limitation may transfer the same percentage of taxes paid to another qualified homestead within the same taxing unit. It retains the tax limitation for a surviving spouse who is 55 years of age or older and resides (and continues to reside) in the residence qualified by the deceased qualified homeowner.
The ballot reads: "The constitutional amendment to permit counties, cities and towns, and junior college districts to establish an ad valorem tax freeze on residence homesteads of the disabled and of the elderly and their spouses."
Proposition 17 comes from H.J.R 21 to have a limit on school taxes of disabled homeowners.
If Texas voters approve, it would implement H.B. 217 to extend the school tax limitation to homesteads of disabled homeowners. It provides that the homeowners with the school tax limitation may transfer the same percentage of taxes paid to another qualified homestead. It also keeps the tax limitation in effect for a surviving spouse who is 55 years of age or older and resides (and continues to reside) in the residence qualified by the deceased qualified disabled homeowner.
The ballot reads: "The constitutional amendment to prohibit an increase in the total amount of school district ad valorem taxes that may be imposed on the residence homestead of a disabled person."
Proposition 19 addresses S.J.R 45 to repeal legislative authority for rural fire prevention districts.
The enabling legislation, S.B. 1021, converts all rural fire prevention districts to emergency service districts.
The ballot reads: "The constitutional amendment to repeal the authority of the legislature to provide for the creation of rural fire prevention districts."