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Prop 19

a YES vote supports this constitutional amendment to: • 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; • increase the number of times that persons over 55 years old or with severe disabilities can transfer their tax assessments from one to three; • require that inherited homes that are not used as principal residences, such as second homes or rentals, be reassessed at market value when transferred; and • allocate additional revenue or net savings resulting from the ballot measure to wildfire agencies and counties.

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a NO vote opposes this constitutional amendment, therefore continuing to: • allow eligible homeowners to transfer their tax assessments within counties and to homes of equal or lesser market value; • keep the number of times that persons over 55 years old or with severe disabilities can transfer their tax assessments at one; • allow the tax assessments on inherited homes, including those not used as principal residences, to be transferred from parent to child or grandparent to grandchild.

Official Arguments (click ▸ to expand)

✅ Support
🚫 Opposition

🚫 San Francisco Chronicle

"But it’s still a flawed package, designed to rev up home sales that benefit real estate agents who could reap more in commissions. It favors one narrow segment of the tax-paying public but does nothing for the rest of the state’s home buyers. The measure shows the convoluted extremes that California’s tangled property tax system produces."

✅ The San Diego Union-Tribune

"While critics see this as a gift to the wealthy elderly, the great majority of older homeowners are middle-income, not rich. Allowing them (as well as disabled homeowners and wildfire or disaster victims) to downsize without suffering a huge property tax hit is a humane policy that helps people retire with much less financial stress. It would also promote fluidity in home sales, increasing the availability of larger homes for families with children and easing the phenomenon of Proposition 13 depressing the real estate free market by trapping empty nesters in homes bigger than they need. So vote yes on Proposition 19. It’s not perfect, but it is good."

🚫 American Civil Liberties Union SoCal

"Vote to prevent another tax break that benefits only the wealthy.

Prop 19 creates another tax break for already wealthy property owners by allowing homeowners over age 55, living with disabilities or displaced by wildfires to carry their existing property tax rates to new homes anywhere in the state up to three times. Prop 19 does nothing to address California’s unaffordable housing crisis and may threaten funding for schools and essential services in some counties. Voters rejected a similar proposition in 2018. Vote NO on Prop 19 to stop a tax break that would increase inequity and widen the wealth gap."

🚫 Los Angeles Times

"But Proposition 19 would just expand the inequities in California’s property tax system. It would grossly benefit those who were lucky enough to buy a home years ago and hold onto it as values skyrocketed. It would give them a huge tax break and greater buying power in an already expensive real estate market. It would skew tax breaks further away from people who don’t own a home or who may be struggling to buy one."

🚫 The Mercury News

"Prop. 19 merely plugs one hole in the state’s porous property tax laws while creating another. It’s time for holistic reform that simplifies the system and makes it more equitable. This isn’t it. [...] The longer a person had owned their current home, and already benefited from inordinately low tax bills due to Prop. 13, the greater the tax break on the new property. And those who downsize would often be competing with first-time buyers for more-affordable smaller homes. The real reform would be to abolish the tax-transfer program, not expand it. Vote no on Prop. 19."

🚫 Orange County Register

"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 Desert Sun

"What seems clear is that the main backers of this measure — Realtors and the firefighters union — stand to gain greatly in the forms of expected increased home sales and related sales commissions and the measure’s dedication of some of the state’s ultimate new tax proceeds specifically to firefighting efforts. Firefighting must be a priority of state and local governments. Budgeting for anything so vital by this type of special interest ballot measure is the worst way to do so. Lawmakers should be making such key spending decisions in their regular budget work."

✅ California Democratic Party

"Helps seniors, disabled homeowners, and wildfire victims; closes tax loopholes on out-of-state trust fund heirs."

🤷 Republican Party

"Make an Informed Decision

Prop 19 is an important measure that may have significant tax implications for many California homeowners. The California Republican Party has not taken a position on Prop 19, but we encourage all voters to learn more about this measure and make an informed decision this November."