Meanwhile, in this year’s election, vote against Proposition 4

Early voting for the Nov. 5 constitutional amendments election will continue through Nov. 1. TSTA urges you to vote against Proposition 4 because it could have a devastating effect on future education funding.

Proposition 4 would make it more difficult for a future Legislature to recommend a state income tax to voters. But it would wipe out an existing constitutional provision that already prohibits an income tax unless a majority of Texas voters approve one.

And more importantly for public schools, students and educators, it also would repeal a provision, adopted in 1993, that provides that at least two-thirds of the revenue from an income tax be dedicated to reducing school property taxes and the remainder to increasing education funding.

“Proposition 4 is bad for public education,” TSTA President Noel Candelaria said. “If adopted, it would remove from the state constitution a guarantee that any revenue raised by an income tax be dedicated to improving education funding.”

Because of the way Proposition 4 is worded, business groups also could seek court rulings exempting corporations from having to pay billions in state franchise taxes, which are an important source of current funding for education and other state needs. Here is an Austin American-Statesman editorial explaining that problem.

Other newspapers opposing Proposition 4 include the Houston Chronicle, The Dallas Morning News, the San Antonio Express-News, the Waco Tribune-Herald and the Austin Chronicle.

TSTA supports Proposition 7, which would allow the General Land Office to double from $300 million to $600 million the amount of revenue it could donate each year from state-owned land or properties to the Available School Fund for distribution among school districts. This would be an important new boost to public education funding.

Here is more information on both propositions.