Property Tax Relief is Here, Finally!


Senator Bettencourt (R-Houston), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Property Tax, is offering clarity on what Texas taxpayers can expect with the implementation of Senate Bill 2, authored by Bettencourt, and House Bill 3, co-sponsored by Bettencourt, passed during the 86th Session of the Texas Legislature. This reform legislation marked the first major overhaul of the property tax system almost forty years. Senator Bettencourt has presented this information last month at the Aggie Real Estate Network conference in Houston and it will be presented again at the Ad Valorem taxation conference in San Antonio, and TribFest in September. 

“Despite what you might have heard, taxpayers will see meaningful property tax relief this Fall,” said Chairman Bettencourt. “This package of legislation gives hard working Texans an immediate property tax cut of 7+ pennies on the 2019 ISD bill and slows down the growth of property tax bills going forward, in 2020.”

Under the legislation, taxpayers should expect a 7+ penny reduction on their school property tax rate in 2019. On a median valued home in Texas ($187,392) this could mean a savings of over $1,000 by 2024. (*See the attached charts for additional details). Following this property tax rate cut in 2019, Senate Bill 2 will slow the growth of future property tax bills by lowering the rollback rate from 8% to 3.5% for cities and counties with a population over 30,000. If they want to exceed this limit, they must get the vote of the public in an automatic November election. School Districts will have a maintenance and operations tax levy cap of 2.5% starting in 2020. 

“It is a simple concept…as appraised values go up, property tax rates need to come down,” continued Chairman Bettencourt.  “This is not a partisan issue because this is an everybody pays issue. Taxpayers cannot take it anymore.”  Passage of Senate Bill 2 was not certain until Lt. Governor Dan Patrick (R-Texas) stated that he was willing to move the blocker bill on the Senate calendar to pass it. 

"The Taxpayer's 'win' would not have been possible except for all those taxpayers who testified in hearings and supported SB2 over the last three legislative sessions, and for the bipartisan support in the final votes," added Senator Bettencourt. "Look for total property tax relief of between $735 - $1066 by 2024."

In addition to the major reform to the rollback rate, Senate Bill 2 implements much needed transparency and appraisal reforms. Senator Bettencourt joined the Houston Association of Realtors for a discussion on SB2, HB3 and property taxes. That video can be found here: https://bit.ly/33ftLT9

Additional information can also be found at: https://senate.texas.gov/members/d07/press/en/p20190805a.pdf


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