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Texas Proposition 15 (2001)

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Texas Amendment 15 was a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment creating the Texas Mobility Fund and authorizing grants and loans of money and the issuance of obligations for financing the construction, reconstruction, acquisition, operation, and expansion of state highways, turnpikes, toll roads, and toll bridges. It was on the November 6, 2001 general election ballot in Texas where it was approved.

Election results

Amendment 15
ResultVotesPercentage
Approveda Yes 543,759 67.72%
No259,18832.27%

Text of measure

The short ballot summary voters saw on their ballot read: "The constitutional amendment creating the Texas Mobility Fund and authorizing grants and loans of money and issuance of obligations for financing the construction, reconstruction, acquisition, operation, and expansion of state highways, turnpikes, toll roads, toll bridges, and other mobility projects."[1]

Text of measure

The language that appeared on the ballot:

The proposed constitutional amendment would create the Texas Mobility Fund as a separate fund in the state treasury. Money in the fund may be used to finance the construction, reconstruction, acquisition, and expansion of state highways, including costs of design and right-of-way acquisition. Money in the fund may also be used for state participation in constructing and providing publicly owned toll roads. The legislature may dedicate a source or amount of state revenue to the fund, other than motor vehicle registration fees, taxes on motor fuels and lubricants, and other money otherwise dedicated by the constitution.

The amendment authorizes the Texas Transportation Commission to issue and sell bonds and to pledge the money in the Texas Mobility Fund to the payment of the bonds. The proceeds of sale of the bonds must be deposited in the fund and may be used, in addition to the purposes authorized for other money in the fund, for costs related to issuance and administration of the bonds. The legislature may authorize the Texas Transportation Commission to guarantee payment of the bonds by pledging the full faith and credit of the state if dedicated revenue is insufficient to pay the bonds. If the commission takes this action, payment of the bonds will be guaranteed by the general revenue of the state. The legislature may not change a dedication of revenue to the fund unless the legislature dedicates to the fund another source or amount of revenue of equal or greater value and the commission exercises this authority to guarantee the bonds.

The amendment also allows the Texas Department of Transportation to spend, grant, or loan state money for the acquisition, construction, maintenance, or operation of turnpikes, toll roads, and toll bridges and removes a requirement that money from the state highway fund used for the costs of these facilities be repaid to the state highway fund.

Path to the ballot

See also: Laws governing direct democracy in Texas

As laid out in Article 17 of the Texas Constitution, in order for a proposed constitutional amendment to be placed on the ballot, the Texas State Legislature must propose the amendment in a joint resolution of both the Texas State Senate and the Texas House of Representatives. The joint resolution can originate in either the House or the Senate. The resolution must be adopted by a vote of at least two-thirds of the membership of each house of the legislature. That amounts to a minimum of 100 votes in the House of Representatives and 21 votes in the Senate.

See also

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