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Autopsy Report: Property Taxes Will Continue to Rise in Texas

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As Texans’ property taxes continue to rise, the Texas Legislature took no decisive action to lower them across the board. Three experts discuss what the Legislature actually accomplished and what citizens should ask for in a special session.

“We have a lot of people who are being taxed out of their homes, and that is wrong at every level,” James Quintero of Texas Public Policy Foundation told Texas Scorecard.

For a full analysis in light of the recent legislative session, Texas Scorecard interviewed Quintero, North Texas realtor Chandler Crouch, and Tim Hardin, the executive director of Texans for Fiscal Responsibility.

What the Legislature Did

“This session’s results were mixed,” Quintero said.

“It’s little nitpicky things: transparency and protections during a disaster and chicken coops,” Hardin said, referring to HB 2535, which keeps chicken coops off of Texans’ property tax appraisals. “They’re steps in the right direction, but … none of this comes even close to making significant property tax relief.”

The best thing Hardin saw was lawmakers’ failure to extend Chapter 313 tax abatements, which are set to expire in 2023. “School districts are able to give property tax abatements or exemptions to businesses that promise to bring a certain number of jobs to the area,” he said. “Any time you exempt anybody from a property tax, guess who has to bear the burden of that exemption? The rest of the taxpayers.”

Crouch discussed passed bills that he likes, two of which are proposed amendments to the Texas Constitution. Senate Joint Resolution 35 expands the current homestead tax exemption to include surviving spouses of service members fatally injured in the line of duty, along with those killed outright, and House Joint Resolution 125 extends the current homestead school tax limit for disabled individuals to include surviving spouses who are at

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