AUSTIN— With HJR3 recently being heard in the House Ways and Means Committee, the Texas Public Policy Foundation released numerous options for giving Texans real property tax cuts without having to increase the burden on taxpayers in other areas.
“Our legislators should be commended for asking the right question: how do we deliver real property tax cuts to Texans,” said TPPF Executive Director Kevin Roberts. “One answer should not be increasing the sales tax without permanent property tax relief, as that will simply add to taxpayers’ burden. Unfortunately, HJR3, in its current form, is a tax increase. We look forward to working with the Legislature to chart a better path toward continued prosperity for Texans.”
Options for real tax cuts include:
- Immediately eliminate M&O property taxes.
- Buy down a portion of the M&O property tax with continued cuts over time.
- Limit government spending growth so that state “surplus” dollars could buy down the M&O property tax over time.
“Whichever path the Texas Legislature takes, real property tax cuts must also be accompanied by a 2.5 percent election trigger to limit the growth of spending without voter approval,” Roberts added. “Fiscal restraint is the cornerstone of sound tax reform policy.”
Dr. Vance Ginn, senior economist, testified against HJR3 in its current form, citing concerns that it would fuel increased government spending. He stated, “By combining property tax reductions and reform with spending limitations, Texas could shift to a more efficient and fair sales tax-dominated system. In this way, Texans can be assured meaningful, lasting property tax relief and an improved Texas Model that will sustain economic prosperity for generations.”
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