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Unjust Legacy

June 22, 2022
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Unjust Legacy: How Proposition 13 Has Contributed to Intergenerational, Economic, and Racial Inequities in Schools and Communities

Since Proposition 13 passed in 1978, housing and wealth disparities have widened, and older, longer-tenured, and wealthier homeowners continue to benefit with annual tax subsidies even as housing affordability has worsened. California public schools have also been harmed by reduced revenues and sustained neighborhood segregation.

Unjust Legacy: How Proposition 13 Has Contributed to Intergenerational, Economic, and Racial Inequities in Schools and Communities is a new report released by The Opportunity Institute and Pivot Learning that explores these patterns and discusses paths forward.

Key findings from the Unjust Legacy report about the impact of Prop. 13 include:

  • There is a widening housing wealth gap between Black and Latino Californians and white Californians, relative to their share of the Golden State’s population.

  • Prop. 13 offers a large tax subsidy to older and longer-tenured homeowners, homeowners with high-value properties, and commercial property owners. This comes at the expense of newer homeowners and city services.

  • Prop. 13 has contributed to a limited housing supply and to more costly housing.

  • Reforming Prop. 13 could increase revenues for public schools.

“We hope this report will contribute to a growing dialogue about how to reform Proposition 13 and other fiscal policies that run counter to our state’s purported progressive values,”

~ Dr. Arun Ramanathan, CEO, Pivot Learning

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