News Article | September 15, 2023
Proposed Constitutional Amendments for 2023
During the 2023 regular session, the Texas Legislature proposed 13 amendments to the Texas Constitution and added another during the second called special session, providing voters with a total of 14 amendments to consider on the Nov. 7 statewide ballot. These 14 proposed amendments follow 700 previously offered by the Legislature since the Texas Constitution was adopted in 1876. Of those, 517 have passed to become part of the second-longest state constitution, after Alabama's, in the nation.
Lawmakers entered the 88th session of the Texas Legislature with a record $32.7 billion surplus. It is noteworthy that many of the proposed constitutional amendments have funding set aside in the 2024-25 state budget, House Bill 1 by Rep. Greg Bonnen (R-Galveston), that will become available to fund the programs if approved by voters.
The Texas Secretary of State's office recently conducted a drawing to determine the ballot order for the propositions, as listed and summarized below. Explanatory statements for each proposition can be found here.
Proposition 1 (HJR 126): Protects the right to engage in agricultural, timber and wildlife management practices on privately owned or leased land, while allowing the Legislature to regulate such practices when necessary for public safety, animal health, crop production or conservation purposes.
Proposition 2 (SJR 64): Authorizes counties and municipalities to exempt from ad valorem taxation all or part of the appraised value of real property used for child-care facilities.
Proposition 3 (HJR 132): Prohibits the Legislature from imposing a tax on individual wealth or net worth.
Proposition 4 (HJR 2, second special session): Allows the Legislature to limit until December 2026 the maximum appraised value of real property for ad valorem tax purposes and increases the residence homestead exemption from $40,000 to $100,000, or $110,000 for residents over 65 or who are disabled.
Proposition 5 (HJR 3): Sets aside a portion of the Economic Stabilization Fund and redesignates existing national research university funds to create the Texas University Fund to support selected higher education institutions in becoming major research universities.
Proposition 6 (SJR 75): Authorizes the creation of the Texas Water Fund to finance water projects, to be administered by the Texas Water Development Board.
Proposition 7 (SJR 93): Establishes the Texas Energy Fund to provide loans and grants to support electric generating facilities, to be administered by the Public Utility Commission.
Proposition 8 (HJR 125): Creates the Broadband Infrastructure Fund to expand high-speed internet access, to be administered by the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts.
Proposition 9 (HJR 2): Authorizes the Legislature to provide cost-of-living adjustments to eligible annuitants of the Teacher Retirement System of Texas.
Proposition 10 (SJR 87): Allows the Legislature to exempt equipment or inventory of medical or biomedical manufacturers from property taxation.
Proposition 11 (SJR 32): Permits El Paso County to issue bonds supported by ad valorem taxes for conservation and reclamation districts to fund park and recreational facilities.
Proposition 12 (HJR 134): Abolishes the office of county treasurer in Galveston County. Takes effect if approved by a majority statewide and by a majority of the voters of Galveston County.
Proposition 13 (HJR 107): Increases the mandatory retirement age for state justices and judges from 75 to 79.
Proposition 14 (SJR 74): Establishes the Centennial Parks Conservation Fund for the creation and improvement of state parks.
For more information about this article, please contact Elizabeth Choate.