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California Ballot Propositions

Proposition 19: Property Tax Transfers, Exemptions, and Revenue for Wildfire Agencies and Counties Amendment

Prop19

The ballot measure would allow eligible homeowners to transfer their tax assessments anywhere within the state and allow tax assessments to be transferred to a more expensive home with an upward adjustment. The number of times that a tax assessment can be transferred would increase from one to three for persons over 55 years old or with severe disabilities (disaster and contamination victims would continue to be allowed one transfer.)

  • Permits homeowners who are 55, severely disabled, or whose homes were destroyed by wildfire or disaster, to transfer their primary residence’s property tax base value to a replacement residence of any value, anywhere in the state.
  • Limits tax benefits for certain transfers of real property between family members.
  • Expands tax benefits for transfers of family farms.
  • Allocates most resulting state revenues and savings (if any) to fire protection services and reimbursing local governments for taxation-related changes

Text of Initiative

Support

Support website: Yes on 19

"Proposition 19 provides a path for homeowners to transfer their base to their new principal residence up to three times. That’s a huge advantage for homeowners 55 and older. Currently, if you used your transfer when you turn 55, and life changes for you when you’re 70 or 80, you cannot use it again. I don’t know about you, but life does change. Homeowners should be able to retain their principal residence tax basis without being penalized because situations in their life changed, and subsequently, their housing needs changed."

-California Association of Realtors

Opposition

"But Prop. 19 is best understood for what it is: an attempt by real estate interests to accomplish what they couldn’t accomplish two years ago by pandering to the state’s firefighters union. This is a special-interest measure that seeks to raise hundreds of millions of new tax revenues to appease yet another special interest. Prop. 19 has one good feature — portability. Counties ought to enable it forthwith, as a few already have done. But Prop. 19 is a cash grab, not tax reform; it’s not fair to property heirs, and it buys off a union so it has a better chance of passing. Vote it down."

-The Orange County Register Editorial Board

Lisa Sturgis

Lisa Sturgis recently returned to KYMA as its Digital Content Director, but she has a long history with the Desert Southwest.

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