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Transportation Reinvestment Zones


    'No on Prop 2' campaign warns voters to beware of property tax increases

    Deceptive ballot language removed 'ad valorem tax increases' from ballot

    (October 25, 2021 — San Antonio, Texas) Texans Uniting for Reform and Freedom (TURF) and Texans for Toll-free Highways PAC, issued a warning to voters that the constitutional amendment known as Proposition 2 on the ballot November 2 (with early voting already underway) guarantees property tax increases to pay for Transportation Reinvestment Zones (TRZs), if voters approve the measure.

    "Voters beware! Your already sky high property tax bills will go up even more if voters give counties the authority to create TRZs, which are backed by property tax increases," warns Terri Hall, Founder/Director or Texans Uniting for Reform and Freedom (TURF) and Texans for Toll-free Highways, PAC. "Prop 2 guarantees more property tax increases are coming."
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    Link to article here.

    Challenge to 'Misleading' 2021 Texas Ballot Proposition Continues on Appeal

    Grassroots groups have challenged the validity of the ballot language.

    A challenge to a 2021 Texas constitutional amendment ballot proposition was heard by the 7th Court of Appeals in Amarillo last week.

    Proposition 2 allowed counties to create transportation reinvestment zones (TRZ), a power they did not previously have. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, a TRZ is a kind of tax increment financing district where a “zone is created, a base year is established, and the incremental increase in property tax revenue collected inside the zone is used to finance a project in the zone.”

    Several conservative grassroots groups — including Texans Uniting for Reform and Freedom (TURF), Grassroots America, We the People, and True Texas Project (TTP) — sued the Texas Secretary of State to have the 2021 approval of Proposition 2 declared void by Gov. Greg Abbott.

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    Watch the video interview here.

    Grassroots Fight Back Against Debt-Raising Constitutional Amendment

    A lawsuit alleges misleading ballot language for a constitutional amendment authorizing additional debt.

     Texas Scorecard

    Grassroots organizations are continuing their fight to strike down a constitutional amendment passed in 2021 that would allow counties to issue more taxpayer-backed debt. 

    Proposition 2, which passed with 63 percent of the vote, authorizes counties to issue bonds (debt) to fund infrastructure and transportation projects in underdeveloped, unproductive, or blighted areas.

    A lawsuit alleges that the ballot language that was put before voters failed to comply with common law requirements and was substantially misleading due to an omission of the phrase “ad valorem tax increases.”

    Courts have previously ruled that ballot propositions be described with “such definiteness and certainty that the voters are not misled.”

    In 2011, the same ballot proposition was put before voters with language noting the tax implications and failed to pass.

  • Link to Op/Ed here.

    ‘No’ on Prop 2 campaign urges voters to reject property tax increases

    Amendment will guarantee rising property taxes
    By Terri Hall
    Texas Scorecard
    October 7, 2021

    Texas voters beware! Proposition 2 contains misleading ballot wording to hide the fact that this proposition uses local property tax increases to pay for transportation projects that should be funded by the state using your existing taxes. Prop 2 is the result of House Joint Resolution 99 (authored by Rep. Terry Canales, D - Edinburg) to give counties the ability to issue new road debt using an unpopular method backed by property tax increases called Transportation Reinvestment Zones (TRZs).

    Lawmakers already tried to pass this in 2011 (then known as Prop 4), but voters rejected it. Now they think they can get it past voters this November by removing the phrase ‘ad valorem tax increases,’ and include ‘transportation’ (since ballot initiatives for transportation tend to pass with over 80% of the vote). In fact, Prop 2 would authorize counties to divert up to 65% of your property tax increases to projects the state should be funding with your existing road taxes.