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Polls open for constitutional amendment election

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Clay County voters will go to the polls today to decide the fate of 10 proposed amendments to the state constitution. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Due to a historically low turnout for constitutional amendment elections, several voter precincts have been consolidated.

Consolidated precincts are as follows:

1, 8, 9, 15 – Combined to Precinct 8, box located at Henrietta ISD Administration Building, 1801 Crafton, Henrietta.

11, 12 – Combined to Precinct 11, box located at Dean City Hall, 6913 St. Hwy. 79 N, Dean.

13, 14 – Combined to Precinct 13, box located at Thornberry Community Center, 14318 FM 171 West, Thornberry.

17, 32 – Combined to Precinct 17, box located at Christ Community Church, 11403 Nakomis Trail, Arrowhead Ranch Estates.

10, 24, 26 – Combined to Precinct 24, box located at Bellevue City Hall, 136 4th St., Bellevue.

6, 27 – Combined to Precinct 27, Petrolia Volunteer Fire Department, 124 S. Central St., Petrolia.

A description of each proposition is as follows:

Proposition Number 1 (SJR 14) – Would amend the constitution to authorize the legislature to provide the surviving spouse of a 100 percent or totally disabled veteran with an exemption from ad valorem taxation of all or part of the market value of the surviving spouse’s residence homestead as long as the surviving spouse has not remarried, the property was the residence homestead of the surviving spouse when the qualifying veteran died, and the property remains the residence homestead of the surviving spouse.

Proposition Number 2 (SJR 4) – Would amend the constitution to authorize the Texas Water Development Board to issue additional general obligation bonds on a continuing basis for one or more accounts of the Texas Water Development Fund II, with the restriction that the total amount of bonds outstanding at any time does not exceed $6 billion.

Proposition Number 3 (SJR 50) – Would amend the constitution to authorize the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board or its successors to issue and sell general obligation bonds on a continuing basis for the purpose of financing educational loans for students, subject to certain constitutional restrictions, including a restriction as to the maximum principal amount of bonds outstanding at any one time.

Proposition Number 4 (HJR 63) – Would amend the constitution to authorize the legislature to permit a county to issue bonds or notes to finance the development or redevelopment of an unproductive, underdeveloped, or blighted area within the county, and to pledge increases in ad valorem tax revenues imposed on property in the area by the county for repayment of such bonds or notes.  The amendment does not provide independent authority for increasing ad valorem tax rates.

Proposition Number 5 (SJR 26) – Would amend the constitution to authorize the legislature to allow cities and counties to enter into interlocal contracts with other cities and counties without having to assess an ad valorem tax and set aside a specified amount of funds for the payment of costs under the interlocal contract.

The proposed amendment would appear on the ballot as follows: “The constitutional amendment authorizing the legislature to allow cities or counties to enter into interlocal contracts with other cities or counties without the imposition of a tax or the provision of a sinking fund.”

Proposition Number 6 (HJR 109) – Would amend the constitution to increase the amount of principal that is available for withdrawal from the permanent school fund each year and would also clarify certain references to that fund in the constitution.  Increased access to the principal of the state public education trust fund would be based upon HJR 109 granting the authority to consider alternative market calculations when determining the amount of principal that is available for distribution to the available school fund.  HJR 109 would also provide authority to distribute to the available school fund annual revenue from school fund land or other properties up to $300 million per year.

Proposition Number 7 (SJR 28) – Would amend the constitution by adding El Paso County to the list of counties authorized to create conservation and reclamation districts to develop parks and recreational facilities financed by taxes.

The proposed amendment would appear on the ballot as follows:

Proposition Number 8 (SJR 16) – Would amend the constitution by requiring the legislature to provide for taxation of open space land devoted to water stewardship purposes on the basis of its productive capacity.

Proposition Number 9 (SJR 9) – Would amend the constitution to authorize the governor, on the written recommendation and advice of the Board of Pardons and Paroles, to grant a pardon, reprieve, or commutation of punishment to a person who successfully completes a term of deferred adjudication community supervision.

Proposition Number 10 (SJR 37) – Would amend the constitution by extending the length of the unexpired term that causes the automatic resignation of certain local elected officeholders if they announce candidacy or become candidates for another office from one year to one year and 30 days.

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The Pioneer Sentinel is an online newspaper designed to deliver the news of Clay County, Texas, in a concise and community-friendly format.

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