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Rep.Bell, Keith

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Texas House Passes Integral Piece to Property Tax Reform  print page

by: Rep. Bell, Keith
05/02/2019

Senate Bill 2 provides critical transparency mechanisms, and works with the budget and school finance legislation to provide property tax reform.

(Austin, Tx) The Texas House just passed the Texas Taxpayer Transparency Act, which provides much needed transparency in the property tax system! Property owners deserve every opportunity to weigh in on how their taxes are being raised & spent. This bill will do just that, and will work with HB 3 to achieve property tax relief.

Our current property tax system lacks transparency, which discourages taxpayers from getting involved. Senate Bill 2, the Texas Taxpayer Transparency Act, provides critical transparency mechanisms that empower taxpayers and voters with a say in the property tax rate-setting process. These transparency mechanisms include online resources that disclose who is proposing rate increases, a portal to provide an opinion on the proposed rate increases and information about public hearings.
The Texas Taxpayer Transparency Act is not a revenue cap, it's a trigger. Current rollback election requirements put an unnecessary burden on taxpayers by requiring them to gather enough signatures to petition for an election. This bill empowers voters because it automatically triggers an election to ratify a property tax rate if it's raised above a certain amount (the rollback rate which is 3.5% for most taxing units and 2% for school districts).

Property tax and school finance reform are nearly impossible to separate. That's why the final passage of the Texas Taxpayer Transparency Act is contingent upon the final passage of the House's landmark public education bill, House Bill 3.

The Texas Taxpayer Transparency Act provides property tax REFORM. The budget and school finance legislation provide $2.7 billion for property tax RELIEF. All three work together, and I am proud to have voted for all three!

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