HOUSTON – Bexar County Democratic Party Chairman Manuel Medina, speaking to the Mission Democrats of Bexar County gathering in San Antonio Thursday night, added his support for Senate Bill 2, the Texas Property Tax Reform and Relief Act of 2017, by Senator Paul Bettencourt (R-Houston). Citing skyrocketing property tax bills and a “rogue appraisal district,” Chairman Medina highlighted the pressing need for tax reform and relief in Texas..
“Taxpayers will welcome this recognition of the obvious, that their property tax bills are going through the roof,” Senator Bettencourt said. “This is an everybody pays issue, not just a partisan issue, and it was no surprise that when the Senate Select Committee on Property Tax Reform and Relief held its first road hearing in San Antonio, we had the largest turnout at that time for a hearing outside of the Capitol in decades.”
According to reporting by Kenric Ward at Watchdog.org, Medina voiced support for the enactment of Senator Bettencourt’s SB 2, calling the measure “fiscally responsible” and saying there need to be limits on the growth of local government revenue. The Democratic Party Chairman also wants the city to lower tax rates to offset the annual increases in appraised values. Over the past three years, from 2013 to 2016, data shows that an average home’s property tax bill in Bexar County has increased 24.3 percent and the growth on a tax bill for a home in San Antonio has been 24 percent.
Several other local officials have supported the multiple concepts found in Senate Bill 2. For example, Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins proposed his own independent plan to cut their tax rate to offset the rapid increase in appraisals; however his plan was defeated. Tarrant County Tax Assessor-Collector Ron Wright stated that one-third of Tarrant County’s taxing units have cut rates for the first time and credited the Senate Select Committee for these results. Collin County Judge Keith Self stated that his county this year adopted the effective rate to keep its tax rate in check, and Galveston County Tax Assessor Collector Cheryl Johnson has called out of control property tax growth a “noose around taxpayers’ neck.”
“No matter how you look at the data, the results are clear: property taxes are rising faster than the average Texan’s ability to pay,” Senator Bettencourt continued. “As Governor Abbott noted during his State of the State address, no government should be able to tax someone out of their home. Texans simply should not stand for it. All Texans need to support property tax relief, too.”