Voters to Consider Tax Ballot Initiatives in Eighteen States Tomorrow

November 3, 2014

UPDATE: Results of state and local ballot initiatives have been posted here.

Tomorrow, voters in eighteen states will weigh in on state and local tax policy through ballot initiatives covering everything from taxpayer protection measures in North Dakota and Tennessee to a vote on a proposed margin tax in Nevada (see Liz Malm’s previous coverage), to proposed new taxes on gaming and marijuana.

The National Taxpayers Union has prepared a list of ballot measures dealing with economic issues more broadly. The table below enumerates state, and most local, tax policy initiatives on the ballot around the country tomorrow. We'll post a list of results on the blog as they come in.

Alaska

State

Measure 2 – Legalizing marijuana and imposing $50 / ounce excise tax (Fiscal Fact on marijuana taxes available here)

California

Local

Various – 134 local tax measures, including soda taxes, local sales taxes, special parcel taxes, and utility taxes, funding everything from schools to a zoo

Colorado

State

Amendment 68 – Legalization of limited gaming at horse racetracks, with a $25 million initial assessment per operator plus a tax of 34 percent of adjusted gross proceeds from gaming

Florida

Local

Marion County – One mill ad valorem increase for education funding

Georgia

State

Amendment A – Prohibiting legislative increases to the maximum state income tax rate above January 2015 levels

Georgia

State

Referendum 1 – Extending an ad valorem tax exemption to privately-owned dormitories and parking decks within the University of Georgia system

Georgia

Local

Cobb County – Renewing a 1 percent hike in the special purpose local option sales tax

Illinois

State

Advisory Question – Non-binding referendum on imposing a 3 percent surtax on income greater than $1 million (“millionaires tax”), to be distributed among school districts (previously covered here)

Illinois

Local

Various – 20 local measures imposing new or increased taxes, including retailers’ and service occupation taxes, property taxes, and sales taxes

Kansas

Local

Wichita – Imposing 1 percent sales tax for five years, with estimated lifetime revenue of $400 million

Louisiana

State

Amendment 3 – Allowing tax collectors’ use of authorized agents, with agents’ fees included with the costs that the collector can recover

Louisiana

State

Amendment 6 – Increasing annual millage rate levied for fire and police, to an amount not to exceed ten mills (repealing prior prohibition on increasing rate)

Louisiana

State

Amendment 7 – Expanding homestead exemption for totally disabled veterans and their spouses, exempting them from ad valorem taxation up to $150,000

Louisiana

State

Amendment 9 – Excluding totally disabled owners from the requirement to annually certify their AGI to an assessor to receive the Special Assessments Level on residences for property tax purposes (held harmless from property tax increases)

Louisiana

State

Amendment 14 – Prohibiting tax incentives, rebate, and abatement legislation from being taken up in even-numbered years (restriction already exists for legislation pertaining to exemptions, exclusions, deductions, or credits)

Massachusetts

State

Question 1 – Eliminating annual automatic gas tax indexing to inflation (previously covered here)

Nevada

State

Question 2 – Removing 5 percent cap on mining taxes and eliminating other restrictions on mines and minerals taxes

Nevada

State

Question 3 – Imposing a 2 percent margin tax on businesses gross revenue, with revenues earmarked for education, and temporarily increasing the 2 percent modified business tax on financial institutions (previously covered here and here)

New Mexico

Local

Las Cruces – Imposing 0.25 percent sales tax to fund local transit

New Mexico

Local

Bernalillo County – Non-binding advisory question on whether to impose a 0.125 percent sales tax to fund mental and behavioral health services

North Dakota

State

Measure 2 – Adopting a transfer tax ban, prohibiting the state or any political subdivision from imposing any mortgage tax or sales and transfer tax

Ohio

Local

Various – 1,150 local measures regarding taxes and levies, including 37 increasing, 19 renewing, and 1 replacing local income taxes; 2 increasing and 2 renewing local sales taxes; and 256 increasing, 695 renewing, and 138 replacing other local levies

Oklahoma

State

Question 770 – Allowing a disabled veteran to maintain property tax homestead through mid-year relocation

Oregon

State

Measure 91– Taxing marijuana at a rate of $35 per ounce on marijuana flowers, $10 per ounce on leaves, and $5 per immature plant (Fiscal Fact on marijuana taxes available here)

Tennessee

State

Amendment 3 – Prohibiting the imposition of state or local income taxes, exempting those already in place in 2011 (limited to stock dividend and interest income)

Virginia

State

Amendment – Exempting from local property taxation the primary residence of the surviving spouse (not remarried) of a soldier killed in action

Washington

State

Advisory Vote No. 8 – Nonbinding vote advising whether the legislature should repeal or maintain the prior elimination of agricultural excise tax preferences for marijuana (not currently classified as an agricultural product)

Washington

State

Advisory Vote No. 9 – Nonbinding vote advising whether the legislature should repeal or maintain the leasehold excise tax on certain leasehold interests in tribal property

District of Columbia

State/Local

Initiative 71 – Legalizing marijuana, with legislation pending to levy taxes on recreational and medical marijuana (see our legislative testimony here)

Errata: The original version of this post mistakenly referred to Georgia's "Referendum 1" dealing with tax exemptions for dormitories and parking decks as "Amendment B." Oregon Measure 91 was inadvertantly listed as Question 53, which was the petition number, but not the measure number on the ballot. The New Mexico sales tax increase initiative in Bernalillo County is a non-binding advisory question. We have corrected the errors above.

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