Legislation Offers Tax Relief to Texans Impacted by Natural Disasters

The Texas Senate has unanimously passed legislation giving victims of natural disasters relief from property taxes. If approved by the House, the issue would go on the statewide ballot in November.

“Nothing makes folks madder than having to pay their taxes on a home that was destroyed and unoccupied, and that's what happened after Harvey,” says Sen. Paul Bettencourt, R-Houston.

SJR 57 and SB 1772 would allow for a property tax exemption for property located in a governor-declared disaster area and that is at least 15% damaged by the disaster as determined by the chief appraiser, or up to 100% of the structure for a total loss.

“Instead of having to go through this laborious process of will it be granted or will it not be granted? Will the taxing jurisdictions trigger it or not? What happens is as soon as the governor signs it, individual taxpayers wherever they are in the state, can turn in that one-page rendition and start this process,” says Bettencourt.

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