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  • Legislation Proposes to Increase Property Taxes with Just 55% Vote of Approval

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    August 29, 2019

    Action Alert:

    Hundreds of local special districts could gain the ability to increase property taxes with just a 55% majority vote if a proposed constitutional amendment becomes law.

    The proposal, ACA 1 (Aguiar-Curry; D-Winters), is opposed by the California Chamber of Commerce and fell short of passing the Assembly last week. The author requested that the bill be reconsidered.

    If ACA 1 is approved, voters will be asked to decide whether property tax increases for affordable housing and infrastructure can be approved by just a 55% vote instead of two-thirds.

    When the lower vote requirements outlined in ACA 1 take effect, local taxpayers could face property tax increases—by a 55% vote—from numerous overlapping jurisdictions, including a city, county, school district, community college district and one or more special districts.

    California has an estimated 2,071 independent special districts, many with the power to collect property taxes, according to the Little Hoover Commission.

    The Senate Local Government Committee found that about three-quarters of all special districts are supported in whole or in part by property taxes. These special districts provide services such as fire protection, flood control, cemeteries, and road maintenance.

    ACA 1 undermines the protections of Proposition 13 and permits discrimination against certain classes of taxpayers.  Read More