Merrin's Ballot Language Transparency Bill Signed into Law
COLUMBUS – State Representative Derek Merrin’s (R-Monclova) House Bill 140, which will help voters better understand levy issues on a ballot, has been signed into law Tuesday.
“This is a huge win for taxpayers and transparency. Voters should not need a calculator when voting,” said Merrin.
The bill requires the amount a levy will collect annually be included in ballot language, and requires property tax rates be expressed in terms of $100,000 of the county auditor’s appraised value, so voters can easily understand impact of tax levies.
“Voters have been misled for decades by ballot language that omits how much a levy will cost and absurdly expresses impact in $287 increments,” said Merrin. The bill empowers taxpayers by providing accurate and relevant facts they need when voting.
Also, House Bill 140 requires all levy issues to be printed and displayed in the same font size and prohibits select words from being printed in boldface that emphasizes some words over others.
Representative Merrin has made tax transparency a hallmark of his tenure in the legislature. He believes voters have the right to know what they are paying and voting on.