Water, water everywhere
Of the 9 proposed constitutional amendments, 3 are relatively non-controversial.
If you are a disabled veteran, or the surviving spouse of a vet who was killed in action, propositions 1 and 4 would give the legislature the power to exempt you from property taxes on your home.
Proposition 5 would allow the use of so-called reverse mortgages for the purchase of a new home, not just the refinancing of a current one.
It would allow seniors particularly to save money when they move to a new homestead.
But the most controversial one and the one where big money is being spent, is Proposition 6.
This amendment would create two funds for the financing of future water projects in the state.
It would use $2-billion from the Rainy Day fund for seed money, and the need is great.
Given the population growth of the state, the need for water is becoming critical.
And there just isn’t enough money right now to meet that need.
In fact, water supplies are actually shrinking.
“We don’t have enough water to meet current needs in the event of severe drought conditions,” says Dr. Dan Hardin, Director of Water Resources Planning for the Texas Water Development Board “Based on our projections, we expect the population of the state to increase by nearly 80% between 2010 and 2060. We expect the demand for water in the state to increase by 22%. But the existing supply of water over that time, we expect to decline by 10%.”
“The anti-Prop 6 demonstrations have been very sparsely attended,” says Harvey Kronberg of the Quorum Report newsletter. “The arguments against prop 6 are fairly insubstantial. One is that there is probably going to be cronyism involved. Texas government without cronyism wouldn’t be Texas government.”
There is some grassroots opposition, but there’s lots of money behind the proposition.
Turnout is everything.