To: Members of the Texas Senate
From: Americans for Tax Reform
Re: Property Tax Relief
I urge you to support the Governor’s plan to begin phasing out property taxes. Other states are catching up with Texas by making their tax codes more competitive. North Carolina, Arizona, Indiana, and more than a dozen other states have made progress in driving down their income tax rates toward zero. By enacting property tax relief this special session, you can ensure Texas remains a national leader demonstrating the benefits of limited taxation.
With the nation’s sixth highest average property tax burden, you have rightly made property tax relief the top fiscal priority this year. It’s time to get this top priority across the finish line, which is why I urge you to support Governor Abbott’s proposal. The Governor’s proposal has significant advantages over raising the homestead exemption. Unlike with a homestead exemption increase, the relief from the Governor’s M&O tax phaseout would also flow through to renters and employers. In fact, there is a case to be made that raising the homestead exemption would make it harder to eventually achieve the goal of full property tax repeal.
The reduction in the rollback rate that you approved in 2019 has already saved Texans billions of dollars. Despite that progress, I commend you for recognizing that further reform is needed to achieve necessary property tax relief. Getting property tax relief and school choice enacted this year would stand in contrast to the dysfunction and profligacy in Washington, Sacramento, Springfield, and Albany. It would also demonstrate to all Americans that there is a superior approach to governance on offer.
I thank you for your leadership in advancing conservative reforms. Unfortunately, the House has not always followed suit, such as with their lack of action on Senate Bill 175, legislation to end taxpayer-funded lobbying. But I commend you for doing your part. Your counterparts in Tennessee and Florida have enacted significant tax relief this year. I urge you to vote for Governor Abbott’s property tax relief plan and in doing so demonstrate that Florida and Tennessee are not the only fast growing no-income-tax states where lawmakers are continuing to pursue further improvements to the tax code. The Governor’s plan to eliminate 42% of Texans’ property tax bills by phasing out the M&O property tax over time would provide significant relief to millions of households and employers. I urge you to vote in favor of this plan.
President, Americans for Tax Reform