Editorial

18 October 2021

Capitol Update: Constitutional Amendments 6-8

The Texas Legislature is moving quickly as we work to conclude the Third Called Session of the 87th Legislature. Recently, the House approved its version of a redistricting map, but work still remains as that bill heads to the Senate for approval. In the final five days of this session, members of both Chambers still have an opportunity to disburse more than $16 billion worth of federal funds, pass meaningful legislation to help Texans with the burden of rising property taxes, and complete the redistricting process for Texas Congressional districts.

With that, here’s my final update Constitutional Amendments…

Capitol Update

To conclude our weekly overview of the upcoming propositions on the November 2 ballot, we will examine the remaining three propositions—Propositions 6-8.

Proposition 6 proposes a constitutional amendment that would grant residents of long-term care facilities the right to designate an essential caregiver for in-person visitation. Due to the pandemic, restrictions from some long-term care facilities left residents isolated for many months from friends and family. I support Prop 6; allowing one essential caregiver is an appropriate balance between ensuring residents receive visits from a loved one, while still providing flexibility for facilities to respond to the ongoing effects of COVID-19 or a future pandemic.

Proposition 7 proposes a constitutional amendment to provide property tax limitations for the surviving spouse of a person with a disability. Prop 7 ensures the surviving spouse of an individual with a disability will continue to receive the school district property tax limitation if the spouse is 55 years of age or older at the time of the person’s death. This is a measure I support as it would provide relief to surviving spouses on a fixed income and make certain they are not taxed out of their homes.

Proposition 8 proposes a constitutional amendment to expand homestead exemption eligibility for surviving spouses of service members killed in the line of duty. In 2013, Texans voted to provide a full property tax exemption on the homestead of spouses of members killed in action. Prop 8 corrects the term “killed in action,” as it does not include non-combat-related deaths and replaces it with “in the line of duty.” With little financial impact, this measure will provide meaningful relief for those in need. I support this measure as I believe we must do all we can to support our servicemen and women who defend our freedoms.

As always, please do not hesitate to contact my office if we can help you in any way. My district office may be reached at (936) 634-2762. Additionally, I welcome you to follow along on my Official Facebook Page, where I will be posting regular updates on what’s happening in your State Capitol and sharing information that could be useful to you and your family: https://www.facebook.com/RepTrentAshby/.

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