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Major Threats to Prop. 13 and Homeowners

MAJOR THREATS to Proposition 13 and homeowners

Bills That Threaten Homeowners and Small Businesses Are Currently Moving Through the Legislature!

The new Legislature is dominated by pro-tax politicians, and bills, that undermine the taxpayer protections in Proposition 13, have been introduced and are being heard in committees. If approved, these bills could cost every property owner thousands of dollars.

Currently, five of these bills that directly undercut various provisions of Proposition 13 (Senate Constitutional Amendments 4, 7, 8, 9 and 11) have been heard in two policy committees. Despite strong testimony from HJTA, these were approved on a party-line vote (Democrats in favor). These bills now sit in the Senate Rules Committee, where they will likely remain until January 2014. At that point, however, they could be taken up at any time with as little as 24 hours’ notice. We will continue to alert you promptly regarding these and other threats to Proposition 13.

An additional two bills, Assembly Constitutional Amendments 3 and 8, also diminish Proposition 13’s protections. ACA 3 has not yet been set for a hearing, but what occurred with ACA 8 in 2013 illustrates how quickly the Legislature can move one of these bills forward if they choose to do so. In June, Democrat leadership moved ACA 8 directly from the Assembly Rules Committee to the Assembly Floor with 24 hours’ notice. The bill received no legislative policy hearings, meaning HJTA’s lobbyist could not voice public opposition to the measure. It also left the public with little time to weigh in. ACA 8 was approved on a party-line vote in the Assembly on a Saturday morning with few people paying attention. It is now camped in the Senate, but because it has already cleared the Assembly it represents a deeper threat than the other attacks.


Senate Constitutional Amendment 4 (SCA 4), Carol Liu (D—La Canada) and Senate Constitutional Amendment 8 (SCA 8), Ellen Corbett (D—San Leandro): Lowers the threshold for the imposition, extension or increase of local transportation special taxes from the Proposition 13-mandated two-thirds vote to 55%. Most transportation special tax increases consist of very regressive sales tax hikes. These add to the burden of California taxpayers who already pay the highest state sales tax in the nation.

Senate Constitutional Amendment 7 (SCA 7), Lois Wolk (D—Davis): Lowers the threshold from two-thirds to 55% in order to approve a bond to fund public library facilities. Lowering the threshold for school facilities to 55% has already resulted in billions of dollars of additional property tax payments that otherwise would not have been approved by voters.

Senate Constitutional Amendment 9 (SCA 9), Ellen Corbett (D—San Leandro): Lowers the threshold from two-thirds to 55% to increase special taxes to fund community and economic development projects.

Senate Constitutional Amendment 11 (SCA 11), Loni Hancock (D—Berkeley): Lowers the threshold to 55% to allow for voters representing ANY local government entity to approve a special tax for ANY purpose. This is far and away the broadest application, and thus the most egregious, of these constitutional amendments.

Assembly Constitutional Amendment 3 (ACA 3), Nora Campos (D—San Jose): Lowers the threshold to 55% for voters within cities, counties and special districts to approve EITHER a local bond measure or a special tax in order to fund emergency service facilities projects including police and fire services.

Assembly Constitutional Amendment 8 (ACA 8), Bob Blumenfield (D—Woodland Hills): Lowers the threshold to 55% for city and county voters to approve a local bond measure in order to fund emergency service facilities projects.

Click here to download a fact sheet on ACA 8.

Tell your representatives that you oppose these bills that attack your Proposition 13 protections.

Click here to contact your representative.

Click here to receive regular HJTA updates.

Check back often to see the latest threats to Proposition 13 and to learn how you can fight back.