Vote on Referenda/Propositions etc

Discussion in 'West Mall' started by Chop, Oct 21, 2019.

  1. Chop

    Chop 1,000+ Posts

    Early voting started today. There are a number of propositions on the ballot.

    IMHO, the most important is number 4 which prohibits the imposition of a state income tax. When it comes to states that don’t tack on a state income tax (on top of federal income taxes), it’s down to just us, Florida, Washington, Nevada, Wyoming, South Dakota, and maybe a few others.

    If the day ever comes when most Texans want a state income tax, this will make it much more difficult to get a state income tax passed. So don’t ignore this ‘minor’ election. Much is at stake for the State’s future.


    Proposition 4 (HJR 38) “The constitutional amendment prohibiting the imposition of an individual income tax, including a tax on an individual’s share of partnership and unincorporated association income.”
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2019
  2. Chop

    Chop 1,000+ Posts

    More Prop 4 info:

    Proposition 4 (HJR 38) “The constitutional amendment prohibiting the imposition of an individual income tax, including a tax on an individual’s share of partnership and unincorporated association income.”

    Explanation
    Proposition 4 would prohibit the Texas Legislature from establishing a personal state income tax.

    Arguments For
    • A 2019 poll by the University of Texas at Austin and the Texas Tribune found 71% of respondents oppose an individual state income tax. *
    • Texas has a low-tax, pro-growth approach to economic expansion, and that is dependent on having no personal income tax.
    • This amendment could support population growth in Texas, as families and businesses may move to Texas because there is no state income tax.
    • An income tax would also increase the size of government by requiring a large bureaucracy to administer it.
    Arguments Against
    • This amendment is not necessary because the Texas Constitution now prohibits the Legislature from imposing an income tax without a statewide referendum (Art. 8, Sec. 24, adopted in 1993). In addition, any net revenue from that tax must be used for the support of education.
    • Revenue from an income tax could reduce the tax burden on businesses, which pay a higher proportion of taxes in Texas than in other states.
    • The current Legislature and today’s voters should not make taxation decisions for future Texans. The needs of Texans change over time, so future Texans should make their own choices on taxation.
    • One reason Texans pay high property and sales taxes may be because Texas has no income tax. If Proposition 4 passed, these taxes would likely continue to increase, so Proposition 4 would not necessarily decrease the size of state government.




    FW STAR TELEGRAM (quoted below, with emphasis added) opines in favor of Prop. 4:

    "PROPOSITION 4: YES
    Texas doesn’t have an income tax, and that won’t change based on what happens with this amendment. Currently, lawmakers would have to approve such a tax with a simple majority and ask voters to do the same in a statewide election. This amendment would boost the needed vote in each house of the Legislature to two-thirds.

    The bar to a major new tax should be high. But Texans aggrieved by high property and sales taxes should recognize that it’ll be difficult to ever substantially reduce those without a major new source of revenue."

    (Well, there's at least one big city paper left in this State that is certainly not a Marxist rag.)
     
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    Last edited: Oct 21, 2019
  3. Mr. Deez

    Mr. Deez 10,000+ Posts

    I'm all for Prop. 4, but it's a little like the gay marriage pile-on. Texas common law didn't recognize gay marriage. However, we passed a statute prohibiting gay marriage. Then we came back and passed a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. And of course, there was no reason to do any of it. We just did it to make sure the "damn queers" knew we meant business.

    The same thing is happening with the income tax. We don't have an income tax, and our constitution makes it extremely difficult to have one. But we may as well take the next step and make the extremely difficult damn near impossible.
     
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  4. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada Liquor Man

    Agreed.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
  5. Chop

    Chop 1,000+ Posts

    Future legislatures might be able to muster a simple majority in both houses in favor of a state income tax. 2/3 in each house—very highly unlikely. Future increases in spending will have to be paid for with property, sales, petroleum extraction, ‘sin’, and gas taxes, etc.

    Casinos and legalized sports betting wouldn’t hurt either. Most of these incoming new Texans don’t seem to have hang ups about that stuff.
     
  6. theiioftx

    theiioftx 2,500+ Posts

    So I really like Tennessee. No income tax, much lower property taxes compared to Texas, and a slightly higher sales tax which seems to apply to everything.

    My property taxes here are 1/3rd of my property taxes in Houston for a home that has a value $300,000 more. I honestly do not notice the sales tax.

    I would probably still support the income tax prohibition, but I would prefer a stronger limit on property taxes. And with sales tax, everyone pays the same.
     
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  7. nashhorn

    nashhorn 2,500+ Posts

    I agree Theo but I admit to sometimes ‘noticing’ the sales tax.
     
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  8. Chop

    Chop 1,000+ Posts

    Interesting. Would you say the level of state and local government services in Tenn is roughly equivalent to Texas? Infrastructure, schools, sewers, police and fire, etc.?
     
  9. theiioftx

    theiioftx 2,500+ Posts

    I live in Williamson County south of Nashville. Infrastructure and all services much better.

    The state runs a surplus every year.
     
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  10. Mr. Deez

    Mr. Deez 10,000+ Posts

    You are correct, but the fact that the Legislature passed this amendment should tell you something. The GOP doesn't think it'll have a majority for the long term. It's planning for that "future legislature," and that is worrisome.

    Second, as much as we brag about not having a state income tax, it's a bit of a joke, because our property taxes are such a butt-slam.
     
  11. huisache

    huisache 2,500+ Posts

    I vote NO on amendments to our Constitution as a rule but this morning I made an exception as to one. I voted FOR the one allowing law enforcement to give away narc dogs in some cases. This is a serious power I trust will not be abused. It is important stuff like this that merits amending our dear old sacred document
     
  12. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada Liquor Man

    Educate me, huisache. What is a narc dog? Is that a narcotics sniffing police dog that has maybe gotten too old for the job, or is it a dog that belonged to narcotics dealers who are going away for a while?
     
  13. Chop

    Chop 1,000+ Posts

    So how do they do it? More and better for less. Texas should study other places to see how they do it.
     
  14. huisache

    huisache 2,500+ Posts

    Proposal 10 allows law enforcement to give away retired drug sniffing dogs to qualified recipients for free. They don't have to pay a fee to get the dog

    Our legislature cannot pass a statute allowing the gifting of surplus property for fear they would abuse the power

    Really
     
  15. nashhorn

    nashhorn 2,500+ Posts

    Hey Theo I’m Williamson Co property owner too, over in once lowly Nolensville. We are there whenever not here in Katy. I have to say I hate what our councilmen have allowed to happen with our once calm quiet community. Mostly Ca imports have created a traffic jam so bad I have spent 15-20 minutes getting out of my driveway (among the last on Nolensville Rd).
     
  16. theiioftx

    theiioftx 2,500+ Posts

    No doubt traffic is becoming an issue due to growth. I hate that some people are selling property to allow neighborhood development, but not sure much can be done.

    The public schools are amongst the best in the country. I know three of the high schools produce 20 or more national merit scholars each year.

    https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/rankings/fiscal-stability
     
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  17. Sangre Naranjada

    Sangre Naranjada Liquor Man

    Thank you!
     
  18. Chop

    Chop 1,000+ Posts

    Our Texas Constitution is a Byzantine mix of both 'normal' constitutional provisions and numerous 'super statutes.' It all goes back to history, and it's rooted in the aftermath and memories of the reconstruction-era Governor Davis administration.
     
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  19. nashhorn

    nashhorn 2,500+ Posts

    I will say that except for Megs and HumFog, Wmson Co schools stand alone among the public schools in Tenn, certainly in the Nash area. Don’t think anything else in State compares but really do not know about the Germantown area in Memphis.
     
  20. Mr. Deez

    Mr. Deez 10,000+ Posts

    Tennessee spends less per capita on public education than Texas does. It also wouldn't shock me if their prison and health budgets are smaller.
     
  21. Chop

    Chop 1,000+ Posts

    If Tennessee’s overall public education results are better than ours, and for a lot less money, that should be examined. If, on the other hand, these particular Williamson County, Tennessee schools are high-performing outliers, we could easily find scores of the same in Texas.
     
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  22. mchammer

    mchammer 5,000+ Posts

    Tennessee is not a border state. Also, the weather is more temperate. Also, I suspect no one moves to Tennessee unless they have a job (thus, positive immigration).
     
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  23. nashhorn

    nashhorn 2,500+ Posts

    I’m not going to look it up but my comparison would be Williamson Co in Tenn to for: example Katy ISD. Not an outlier necessarily but definitely of higher quality compared to the standard. No way would I consider the total public education in Tenn superior to that of Tx, no way at all.
     
  24. Mr. Deez

    Mr. Deez 10,000+ Posts

    There is no causation between education spending and academic performance. We talk about it as though there is, but it's as mythological Goldilocks and the 3 bears.
     
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  25. mchammer

    mchammer 5,000+ Posts

    The causation is this: high performing wealthy families live in a district, the tax base is bigger thus bigger school budgets, the kids outperform other districts. Which is it? The funding, or the families that produce that funding. Remember you can’t have a middle class without middle class values. Everything else is cargo cult science.
     
  26. Monahorns

    Monahorns 2,500+ Posts

    It is the culture not the $. Performance has gone down in many cases as more $s are spent. The issues is the quality of the teachers and school admin and the expectations parents have of their children's academic performance. Anything else is window dressing.
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
  27. theiioftx

    theiioftx 2,500+ Posts

    I agree. But Williamson County far exceeds anything I experienced in Texas.
     
  28. theiioftx

    theiioftx 2,500+ Posts

    During orientation at my daughter’s high school, the principal warned that they do not allow drop outs. She clarified that they do not allow parents to drop out. It was expected that you actively attend, support and remain engaged with your kid and the school.
     
  29. Mr. Deez

    Mr. Deez 10,000+ Posts

    It's the families. The evidence overwhelmingly supports that.
     
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  30. Chop

    Chop 1,000+ Posts

    I hear all the above and at least partially buy into much of it. But, the implication arises that, as a whole, Texas families suck in comparison to Tennessee families. I don't buy that part.

    If George H.W. Bush-style "family values" was the most important factor, then I would expect Idaho and Utah to have the best schools. I'm not LDS, but I think most would admit that, as a group, the LDS folks excel at family values.

    Perhaps if we changed the phrases: "It's the families" and "middle class values" to "really care about education" that would add some weight to what is being said in this thread.
     

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