Virginia proposed constitutional amendments for 2016

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ROANOKE (WSLS 10) - There will be two proposed Constitutional Amendments to vote on in the state of Virginia this year. The amendments are Right to work and Property tax exemptions for spouses of certain emergency taxpayers.

According to the Virginia Department of Elections, one amendment places the provisions of Virginia's right to work law into the Constitution of Virginia.

Should Article I of the Constitution of Virginia be amended to prohibit any agreement or combination between an employer and a labor union or labor organization whereby (i) nonmembers of the union or organization are denied the right to work for the employer, (ii) membership to the union or organization is made a condition of employment or continuation of employment by such employer, or (iii) the union or organization acquires an employment monopoly in any such enterprise?

Right now, Virginia's right to work law bans businesses from requiring their employees to join a labor union and this amendment won't change that.

A yes vote will add that right to work law to the state constitution which will make it more difficult to repeal that law in the future.

With a no vote, nothing will change.

The second amendment deals with the spouses of emergency services providers who were killed in the line of duty.

The Department of elections says the amendment would exempt the spouses of deceased police, firefighters and search and rescue personnel from having to pay property tax.

Shall the Constitution of Virginia be amended to allow the General Assembly to provide an option to the localities to exempt from taxation the real property of the surviving spouse of any law-enforcement officer, firefighter, search and rescue personnel, or emergency medical services personnel who was killed in the line of duty, where the surviving spouse occupies the real property as his or her principal place of residence and has not remarried?

The exemption is not automatic, but the locality can decide to approve the exemption if they want. The exemption ends if the surviving spouse remarries.