May 6, 2022 - News

Texans will vote on two property tax amendments

Illustration of a voting booth with a roof on it.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Texans have a chance to vote on two property tax constitutional amendments during Saturday’s election.

Why it matters: Property values have risen rapidly during the past two years, meaning many homeowners face higher property tax bills this year.

Details: Voters will see two propositions on their ballots, which would each lower the school district portion of property taxes.

  • The reduced taxes collected locally would be covered by the state or would lower the amount of recapture some school districts pay, according to fiscal notes for each proposition.

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This proposition would cap or freeze school district property taxes for homeowners over 65 or who are disabled. If approved, this proposition would go into effect Jan. 1, 2023.

  • Right now, school taxes freeze when a homeowner turns 65 or is disabled. But a 2019 bill to lower school tax rates did not affect disabled homeowners or residents over 65, because those rates were already frozen. This proposition fixes that, per Texas Standard.

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This proposition would increase the amount homeowners can deduct from their house value before school tax rates are applied, increasing the deduction from $25,000 to $40,000. If approved, it would go into effect this year.

  • State Sen. Paul Bettencourt, a Houston Republican who wrote the legislation for both constitutional amendments, told The Texas Tribune this measure could save the average homeowner $175 a year.

Yes, but: These propositions won’t affect all property owners because homestead exemptions only apply to an owner’s primary residence.

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