Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick is considering approaches to reform property tax in the state as property taxes in Texas could surge up to 50% this year, yet a recent report by the Texas Taxpayers and Research Association makes the note that it very well could have been even worse.
School districts account for over half of the local property taxes collected every year, and the amount has been increasing year over year since at least 2017, Brad Johnson of the Texas News tweeted, citing data from the comptroller's office.
According to The Texan, appraised property values are expected to increase across the state of Texas by 20% to 50% this year. Patrick introduced an item that will explore the elimination of the school district maintenance and operations (M&O) rate, which is responsible for the largest portion of Texan property taxes.
Property taxes are made up of the M&O rate and the Interest and Sinking Rate, and according to the Texan, the former funds more daily and yearly expenditures while the latter is typically used for more capitally intensive projects.
A report published by the Texas Taxpayers and Research Association in April 2022 noted that "Texas property owners need to be prepared for the sticker shock that home shoppers have been experiencing the past year," but found that 2019 reforms reduced property taxes by a collective $6 billion across the state.
Multiple parties have different ideas of what should be done to mitigate property taxes. According to the Texan, Gov. Greg Abbott is seeking a compressed rate, but does not go so far as to scrap the M&O rate entirely. Rep. Dustin Burrows (R-Lubbock) believes that property tax reform must take place through education code reform, and the Texas Public Policy Foundation believes that portions of the state budget surplus can be used to replace M&O funding.