2011 Texas Constitution Amendments

Empower Texans have released a voter guide for the 2011 Texas Constitution Amendments. 

Below is their overview of the proposed amendments and links for more information.


You can find our complete listing of the amendments, our take and recommendation, by visiting our website. There, you can also find a handy sample ballot noting our recommended positions.

The Bad
The worst of the amendments are Propositions 2, 3, 4 and 6.

Propositions 2 and 3 would set in place permanent debt – allowing government agencies to issue bonds over and over without ever having to approach the citizens again for a vote. That’s an incredibly irresponsible way for government to treat debt.

Proposition 4, meanwhile, would open the door to Texas’ counties taking private property for the same kind of “economic development” reasons that has sparked so much outrage in cities across the country. We should be curtailing the ability of government to take private property, not increasing it.

Meanwhile, Proposition 7 would allow an El Paso County entity to start levying property taxes. We should be moving away from property taxes, not getting more governments hooked on them.

Finally, Proposition 6 would endanger the long-term viability of the state’s Permanent School Fund. It would allow a larger portion of the fund to be tapped for expenditure in the short-term, meaning fewer dollars would be available to grow the corpus and keep the fund viable into the future.

We are neutral on Propositions 8, 9 and 10, but do offer a summary on our website of what supporters and opponents are saying about them.

The Good
Finally, we are supporting Propositions 1 and 5.

Proposition 1 would recognize the sacrifice made by our 100% disabled veterans by granting a property tax exemption to them and their surviving spouses. The fine men and women who serve our nation by defending our liberties, and then find themselves fully disabled as a result, all too often find federal services difficult to access. Providing some property tax relief through Proposition 1 can at least allow Texas to step in where Uncle Sam too often has failed.

Proposition 5 will allow cities and counties to enter into cost-savings interlocal agreements of a year or longer without having to classify them as expenses if they are not. In the past, such agreements had been counted as debt and have a portion of their tax revenues set aside to cover it. But for those agreements that result in cost-savings, the old state of the law got in the way.

Hopefully, Proposition 5 will result in more local government seeking sensible agreements that save money and improve services.

All of us at Texans for Fiscal Responsibility encourage you to utilize the resources of various organizations to study these propositions and their impact on the Lone Star State. And, most importantly, we encourage you to participate in the Nov. 8 constitutional amendment election.

For Texas,
Michael Quinn Sullivan
& the EmpowerTexans.com Team


  1. Thank You very much. I agree with y’all…. Except

    on # 1, some concern about if a surviving spouce does not remarry, just shacks up with a Sugar Daddy or Momma???
    I don’t think that they should then get it/ So I Wonder????

    Thanks, Joe

  2. Joe,

    Human nature says that such a “live-in” wouldn’t be a Sugar Momma or Daddy, but rather a mooch. More’s the pity for the surviving spouse in such a situation. There will always be those that play the game, but in the long run, those that play the game will be beat. While moral principles are dismissed with the intensity of an organ transplant rejection, the principles remain true regardless.

    However, in light of the fallen soldiers of Iraq and Afghanistan and their disabled wounded brothers and sisters who pass away, doing the right thing for a surviving spouse should never be regretted.

    At least that’s my own humble opinion.

  3. Bruce Fuller says:

    The correct vote should be NO to all amendments. Every amendment is an attempt to further inflict the pain of big government on individual Texans. JUST VOTE NO. Mr. Sullivan, you are not a conservative and should be ashamed for representing yourself as one.

  4. Nancy Coppock says:

    Mr. Fuller,

    You may well be right. Mark and I had a discussion last night about Joe’s earlier comment to this post. I am now questioning my previous comment.

    If we are to recognize the preferential treatment that various factions receive, then my personal compassion for the widow of a disabled vet must be viewed according to the endowed rights of liberty and personal property of all citizens.

    Even further, shouldn’t we begin to view such government sponsored compassion as the establishment of a state religion complete with a legislated collection plate?

    I have often called for a separation of state and church to end the practice of taxing citizens in the supposed effort of preventing cultural decline.

    So, mea culpa on my initial thoughts on proposed Amendment 1. Charity and compassion belong to the realm of the church, family, and community, not the government. The purpose of government is to ensure and defend the liberty and private property of all citizens.

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