Texas’ property tax is big and fast-growing. In 2016, more than 5,100 local tax jurisdictions levied more than $56 billion in property taxes, making it the single largest tax imposed in the Lone Star State. Of the total levy, school district taxes accounted for the bulk of the burden at $29.9 billion followed by cities ($9.2 billion), counties ($9 billion), and special districts ($8 billion). On a per capita basis, Texas’ property tax is large enough to collect more than $2,000 from every man, woman, and child in the state or more than $8,000 from a family of four.

The Facts

• In fiscal 2016, more than 5,000 local tax jurisdictions hit homeowners and businesses with tax bills totaling $56.1 billion.

• On a per capita basis, Texas’ property tax is large enough to collect more than $2,000 from every man, woman, and child in the state or more than $8,000 from a family of four.

• From 1996 to 2016, Texas’ property tax grew by 233%. In comparison, personal income only increased by 199%.

Recommendation

Require voter approval for property tax rates that result in property tax revenue increases of more than 2.5%.