Texas Constitutional Amendments: The Rest of The Ballot

Here’s a look at the remaining issues on the November 3rd ballot.

Proposition 4

The constitutional amendment establishing the national research university fund to enable emerging research universities in this state to achieve national prominence as major research universities and transferring the balance of the higher education fund to the national research university fund.

If passed, the following universities would get funding to further research programs: Texas Tech University, University of Texas-Arlington, University of Texas-Dallas, University of Texas-El Paso, University of Texas-San Antonio, University of Houston and University of North Texas.


Austin Chronicle: “A valiant attempt to provide potential research funding to institutions other than the University of Texas at Austin and Texas A&M, in the hopes of eventually expanding the number of major research universities statewide. Good luck, since we don’t fund the ones we have.”

Houston Chronicle: “Every year Texas loses thousands more freshmen to out-of-state top-tier universities than it attracts. We can’t afford that brain drain.But we can afford Prop. 4, even during this miserable recession. That’s because the $500 million would come from a defunct education fund that Texas scraped together years ago. That means no new taxes.”

Austin American-Statesman: “Having more tier-one research schools would relieve enrollment pressure on UT-Austin and boost the state’s economy.”


Well, I had a hard time finding someone who’s against this. So if you have a reason, drop it in the comments section.

Proposition 9

The constitutional amendment to protect the right of the public individually and collectively, to access and use the public beaches bordering the seaward shore of the Gulf of Mexico.

This would make the 1959 Open Beaches Act part of the state’s constitution.


Corpus Christi Caller-Times: “It allows the Legislature to enact laws to further protect the public’s right to access the beach, and protect the public easement from interference and encroachments.”

Houston Chronicle: “As Texas Gulf Coast residents know all too well, Mother Nature can change the landscape of beaches abruptly. That is one of the acknowledged risks of building a vacation home on the sand. Granting a permanent public easement onto our beaches seems likely to avoid confrontation and confusion while ensuring the broadest possible access.”


El Paso Times: “This proposition involves public access to beaches and doesn’t need to be in the Constitution. The Legislature should handle this. Also, opponents say it could restrict the rights of private-property owners.”

Proposition 10

The constitutional amendment to provide that elected members of the governing boards of emergency service districts may serve terms not to exceed four years.

This might be the most simply worded amendment on the ballot.


Dallas Morning News: “These emergency services commissioners should serve four-year terms so they can gain valuable experience and be more effective at a crucial job that directly affects people’s lives and property.”

San Antonio Express-News: “Elections cost time and money. Extending the term of office for these public servants makes fiscal sense for taxpayers.”


Fort Worth Star-Telegram: “Prop 10 would allow the elected board members in some of those districts in and around Houston to serve terms of four years rather than two.This is goofy. There’s no good reason why board members of obscure districts in Harris County should have longer terms than members of the Texas House.”

The Texas League of Women Voters has put together this helpful brochure in English and Spanish.

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2 Comments on “Texas Constitutional Amendments: The Rest of The Ballot”

  1. Nicole Weaver Says:

    I am the marketing director for Hill Country Restaurants and was wondering how I could be involved in the Friday Freebies. Please let me know via email.

    Niki Weaver

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