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Q&A: Prop 10

Proposition 10

“The constitutional amendment to authorize the legislature to exempt from ad valorem taxation equipment or inventory held by a manufacturer of medical or biomedical products to protect the Texas healthcare network and strengthen our medical supply chain”

If voters approve this proposition, manufacturers of certain medical or biomedical products would be exempt from taxes on equipment or inventory.



Victoria Ford

President and CEO

Texas Healthcare and Bioscience Institute 

Q: Why should the average Texan care about this proposition?

A: Ok, I’ve boiled it down to four reasons why I believe the average Texan should care about this proposition. The first one I think is a little bit obvious. It relates to the medical supply chain. And we just got through the COVID experience where there’s a shortage of PPE, shortage of different medicines. If these things were manufactured in Texas by Texans then we have more control over that supply chain. And therefore the tax incentive that is created by Proposition 10 would encourage more manufacturing facilities to be located in Texas, and that would help us address any Texas-related supply chain issues. So that’s one of the big picture reasons. 

The second big picture reason is that in the state of Texas, there is an effort to try and significantly grow the life science and biotech industry. The idea being that this is an industry that is building towards the future. The biomanufacturing piece of it is the anchor and the foundation for making sure that that industry is successful here in Texas, because we can have all the research happening in Texas that we want. But if they then go to California or Boston to do the manufacturing, frankly we’ve lost them. And so we would lose out on that infrastructure. And other states don’t tax this kind of property. So it is equalizing the tax burden for biomedical manufacturers, which would bring them to Texas, anchor them here in Texas, and then help us build the infrastructure even more. 

That leads to the third point, which relates to if the manufacturing is done here in Texas, more of the researchers will stay here in Texas, and more of the research will be done in Texas. I think this is a particular point for the average Texan. . So, more clinical research happening in Texas means that more Texans get access faster and earlier to clinical innovations that are happening. So that’s the third reason. 

And then the fourth reason is that these manufacturing jobs are really, really good jobs. And you don’t have to have a college degree. So at Fuji in College Station or at Scorpius in San Antonio, when they’re hiring someone for the manufacturing floor, they are really looking for someone who has science knowledge, someone who has good principles related to general manufacturing and they don’t have to have a college degree. So you’re creating jobs that are also very good paying. They’re going to run between $70,000 and $120,000 in average salaries. So the four points, if you put them more precisely, you’re improving the supply chain, you’re anchoring the life science industry with the core function of manufacturing, you are increasing access for Texans to clinical trials and clinical innovation, and you’re creating very good jobs for Texans, some of which you will have a college degree, but some of which would. So those are the four reasons that I believe Proposition 10 is good for Texas.

Q: Why does your organization support?

A: We definitely support it, we did not develop it. It was developed by an organization out of Houston, but we supported it during the legislative process and we continue to support it. What you’ll see from our website is that we support both Propositions 5 and 10 because they work together from our perspective. So we believe that together Propositions 5 and 10 will help promote the life science industry long term in the state of Texas. 

– This Q&A was edited and condensed for clarity and length. Interview conducted by Bea Pizarro, Frieda Prado, and Genevieve Ramos.



Andrew McVeigh

Texans for Fiscal Responsibility

Executive Director of Fiscal Responsibility

Q: Why does your organization oppose it and why should the average Texan care about this proposition?

A: This is another example of corporate welfare. We totally understand that these medical devices are really important for patients, for hospitals, for doctors, and nurses–we get that. The fact still remains that these manufacturers are for-profit companies; they’re still in it to make a profit. So the government is picking winners and losers. When we do this they’re going to give these tax exemptions to these businesses and that inevitably raises the property taxes on other businesses and on homeowners. We don’t think that it’s the proper role of the government to be giving these tax exemptions, we think Texans are already taxed too much, and like I said before local governments aren’t going to account for the lost revenue here which means the rate is just going to go up for everybody else. 

– The Q&A was edited and condensed. Interview conducted by Genevieve Ramos.

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