Re: Prop. 19


Middle class families lost with the passage of Prop 19. It basically eliminated the parent to child transfer exemption for property taxes. Now when we leave property to our children the taxes will increase significantly unless they live on the property. Possibly forcing them to sell. 

The tens of millions of tax dollars raised under Prop 19 will largely be at our kids’ expense. The Republican Party took a spineless neutral position on this Proposition and James Gallagher endorsed it. The middle class often drowns in the wake of the left’s zeal to stick it to the rich, but this time we were straight thrown under the bus by those we can usually trust. Did I mention family owned farms will still be exempt from reappraisal?

Would James have supported Prop 19 without that provision? Hmm. Don’t get me wrong I like James, I voted for James, and overall I think he has done a good job for us. I also support the benefits Prop 19 gave to the disabled, seniors, and fire victims. But, middle class families did not have to be sacrificed to get them. The benefits gained through Prop 19 could have passed without taking others away. They had nothing to do with each other.

Like Prop 15, this was just another avenue to chip away at low property taxes and our Republican leaders went right along with it. The ability to pass property from one generation to another and keep it in the family should be valued beyond the family farm. Not just for sentimental reasons, but also because it can be an effective wealth building tool for the middle class.

Some of us have worked hard to build a business or acquire rental property for the economic advancement of our families. We are not wealthy out-of-state corporations. We live, work, and give back to our communities in time and donations. If Prop 19 was really about rich out-of-state owners getting a benefit they should not receive, as James said, then target them and leave the rest of us the hell alone. 

This Proposition will not really impact the rich, but it will hurt the middle class in the long run. Just another reason to leave this state. I hope the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association will back an initiative to restore the exemption. I would gather signatures.


Ernie Thompson,



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