Texas voters will decide to cut some property tax bills in May election


If two proposals pass, the state will increase funding for schools to make up for lost revenue due to lower property taxes.

Texas voters will decide whether or not to cut some property taxes that fund schools in a special election on May 7.

Two proposals will be on the statewide ballot. Govt. Greg Abbott officially set the date for the next elections on Wednesday.

The first proposal would reduce property taxes for elderly and disabled Texans by reducing the amount they pay to public schools, which typically accounts for the bulk of a homeowner’s tax bill. The state would then cover these reduced revenues for the school districts. The measure would cost the state more than $744 million from 2024 to 2026.

The second measure would increase the Texas homestead exemption from $25,000 to $40,000 for school district property taxes, which would save the average homeowner about $176 on their annual property tax bill. If approved, this measure would cost the state $600 million a year. The state will use a $4.4 billion surplus to pay for the cost of the first year of the measure, but as of October it was unclear where future funding would come from.

Both measures were passed in special legislative sessions last year with bipartisan support from lawmakers.

Pictured: A student takes notes in a third-grade class at Linder Elementary School in Austin last month. A constitutional amendment election in May will allow Texans to decide whether or not to cut certain property taxes that go to public schools. Credit: Miranda Lipton for The Texas Tribune



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