A very important issue will be presented to taxpayers in Broaddus in November considering whether voters will approve Broaddus Independent School District purchasing enrollment credits from the state of Texas. Broaddus ISD recently fell into Chapter 49, also known as the Robin Hood program. The program was launched in 1993 to take funding from school districts with higher property values within their boundaries and give it to poorer school districts which can’t raise much money, according to the Texas Education Agency. view article arw

Creating a personal income tax in Texas isn't easy. But supporters of a proposition on the Nov. 5 constitutional amendment ballot want to make the prospect of such a tax even more remote. Currently, the Texas Constitution requires voters to approve an individual income tax in a statewide referendum, which legislators can ask for with a simple majority in the House and Senate. Proposition 4 would raise the bar, amending the constitution so that any income tax resolution would need two-thirds support in both legislative chambers before the matter goes to voters, who would ultimately decide. view article arw

Texas Parks and Wildlife officials, along with outdoor enthusiasts, are looking to lock in funding for the state’s parks during November’s constitutional amendment elections. Should it pass, Proposition 5 will change the Texas Constitution so that money generated from the existing sales tax on sporting goods can be given only to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the Texas Historical Commission. Texas' parks were initially funded by a penny tax on cigarettes, but the Texas Legislature passed a law in 1993 allowing all of the sporting goods sales tax revenues to be used for the upkeep and expansion of parks and historical sites. view article arw

Gladewater ISD trustees will look at tax items when they meet at 6 p.m. Monday at the Gladewater Middle School library. The board could approve a tax refund and the 2019 tax rolls. The tax rolls are related to a mineral and real estate recap for the mineral and real estate tax levy. view article arw

Fear is a tactic politicians use to scare and distract voters from the real threat. This tactic is on full display in this November’s election in the form of Proposition 4, which would needlessly ban the Texas Legislature from adopting an income tax. Texas is one of only nine states that does not have a broad-based personal income tax, and no one in the Legislature has proposed creating one in recent sessions. view article arw

The China Spring Neighborhood Association announced Tuesday the McLennan County Commissioners’ Court voted unanimously to approve the County Tax Abatement to Glory Leasing for the $70 million solar farm project. view article arw

Administrators for a Rio Grande Valley school district are looking to help with a problem next door. view article arw

A Chicago company is taking steps to place a $500 million, 500-megawatt solar farm in Falls County that would feature 1.6 million solar panels, making it among the largest in the United States, state and local officials report.  Proposed to occupy more than 6,000 acres between Mart and Riesel, most of the farm would lie within the Mart Independent School District. Mart ISD Superintendent Betsy Burnett said the district has hired an Austin attorney to assist with securing tax breaks for the applicant. view article arw

This November election, Texans will be asked if they want to ban a personal income tax — in a state that doesn’t have one.  Under the law, voters already have the final say on adopting a personal income tax.  If a majority of lawmakers pass a resolution to put a personal income tax on the ballot, the specific rate has to be approved by voters in a statewide election. And if enacted, Texas law requires that a portion of the revenue go toward reducing school property taxes and funding education. view article arw

Months after approving the state’s first quarter-trillion-dollar budget, lawmakers got word Thursday that the state’s income forecasts are even better than they expected. In his latest official revenue estimate, which figures in the costs of legislation passed by lawmakers earlier this year, Comptroller Glenn Hegar said Texas government should end its current two-year budget period with $2.89 billion in cash left over. And it will have $9.35 billion in the Economic Stabilization Fund, better known as the rainy day fund. view article arw

Alvin ISD tax rate drops by 5 cents

October 1108:16 AM

Thanks to new homes, healthy property values and a restructured state school finance system, the Alvin Independent School District has lowered its property tax rate by slightly more than 5 cents to $1.3977 cents per $100 valuation for the 2019-2020 fiscal year. view article arw

Homeowners zoned to Spring ISD may see some relief this tax season, as the district’s board of trustees approved its lowest tax rate in 20 years. The board unanimously approved a tax rate of $1.43 per $100 valuation at its Oct. 8 meeting—down $0.08 from $1.51 per $100 valuation in FY 2018-19. The tax rate is broken down into $0.97 for maintenance and operations and $0.46 for interest and sinking, which supports the district’s debt service, Chief Financial Officer Ann Westbrooks said. view article arw

Thanks to new money from the state following the passage of House Bill 3, Clear Creek Independent School District taxpayers will enjoy the district’s lowest property tax rate in 27 years. view article arw

As part of the fiscal year 2019-20 budgeting process, on Sept. 30, the Clear Creek ISD board of trustees officially adopted a property tax rate of $1.31 per $100 valuation, the lowest tax rate in CCISD in 27 years. The tax rate, which will be reflected in tax bills sent to residents and business owners in November, includes $0.97 per $100 valuation for maintenance and operations and $0.34 per $100 valuation for debt service. The previous tax rate of $1.40 per $100 valuation had not changed since FY 2013-14. “We are pleased to be able to pass [these]significant tax savings to our residents and business owners while simultaneously providing our staff record compensation packages,” Superintendent Greg Smith said in a press release. view article arw

The Wichita Falls ISD board voted to approve a new budget today which removes any additional funding the district might have received from the tax ratification election. This is after wording in house bill three annulled the new tax ratification, which was passed just three months ago. “Due to the restraints of House Bill 3, Texas Education Agency has requested Wichita Falls Independent School District set a tax rate of $1.15,” said the district’s chief financial officer Tim Sherrod. view article arw

Wichita Falls ISD set a property tax rate of $1.15 -- 7 cents lower than last year's -- for 2020 in a special meeting Monday, but the state nullified the district's Tax Ratification Election because of a new law, officials said. The TRE approved by voters June 15 was to result in $1.4 million more in state funding for WFISD while reducing the property tax rate, officials said. view article arw

Round Rock school board trustees on Thursday adopted a $1.23 per $100 property valuation district tax rate, reducing the rate by 7 cents from last year.  Despite the fiscal year 2020 tax rate receiving the highest reduction the district has seen in years, the average homeowner will see a nominal decrease in district property taxes due to rising property values.  A homeowner in the district with an average property value of $318,783 after a homestead exemption will pay $3,936 in district property taxes under the new tax rate. That payment is compared to $3,948 in property taxes the average homeowner paid last year with a property value of $302,571, after a homestead exemption. view article arw

While trying to limit the annual growth of property taxes in Texas, the Legislature gave local governments an incentive to raise taxes nearly 8% this year. Maybe it was unintentional, but the state gave the locals a reason to raise property taxes faster than they would have without state action. Everyone who’s seen a car dealer’s TV spots or commercials for a year-ending sale at a furniture store understands how this works: It’s a classic closeout sale. You tell the customer there’s a big change right around the corner — a new model year, higher prices, new rules. And you add that there’s a better deal for anyone who acts quickly, to help the dealer clear the car lot, to assist that poor furniture store owner who wants to reduce inventory before the new year begins. view article arw

While trying to limit the annual growth of property taxes in Texas, the Legislature gave local governments an incentive to raise taxes nearly 8% this year. Maybe it was unintentional, but the state gave the locals a reason to raise property taxes faster than they would have without state action.  Everyone who’s seen a car dealer’s TV spots or commercials for a year-ending sale at a furniture store understands how this works: It’s a classic closeout sale. You tell the customer there’s a big change right around the corner — a new model year, higher prices, new rules. And you add that there’s a better deal for anyone who acts quickly, to help the dealer clear the car lot, to assist that poor furniture store owner who wants to reduce inventory before the new year begins. view article arw

Cy-Fair ISD is the second-largest school district in Harris County, with student enrollment projected to exceed 117,000 in the 2019-20 academic year.  view article arw

Property owners within the Katy ISD geographic boundary will see a lower tax rate in fiscal year 2019-20. The KISD board of trustees approved a total tax rate of $1.4431 per $100 of valuation at the Sept. 23 meeting. This is a $0.0735 reduction from the FY 2018-2019 tax rate thanks to the passage of House Bill 3, the state Legislature’s school finance reform bill. view article arw

In an effort to create jobs, the Needville ISD school board voted last week to limit property tax collection on a solar field in the Guy area. The board accepted an application for a Value Limitation Agreement from Cutless Solar regarding a proposed solar field at the intersection of FM 361 and Boothline Road. An appraised value limitation is an agreement in which a taxpayer agrees to build or install property and create jobs in exchange for a 10-year limitation on the taxable property value for school district maintenance and operations tax purposes. view article arw

Huffman ISD’s property tax rate will remain the same for the 2019-2020 fiscal year as it was for the previous fiscal year At its meeting on Sept. 24, the Huffman ISD Board of Trustees approved a tax rate of $1.40 per $100 value. Though it is the same overall tax rate as the previous fiscal year, the specific allotments are different. view article arw

The Ector County ISD Board of Trustees approved a total tax rate of $1.17 per $100 valuation during their meeting Tuesday. A school district’s taxes are made up of maintenance and operations and interest and sinking to pay debt. The maintenance and operations rate will be $1.06835 per $100 valuation and $10957 for iterate and sinking. No one attended the meeting to comment on the tax rate. view article arw

A statewide property tax relief plan that takes effect next year is prompting hefty tax increases this fall in many of the biggest cities and counties in Texas, even in places that have historically kept rates flat or decreased them.  Elected officials in some cities and counties say they have no choice but to raise taxes as high as they can this year to brace for the implementation of property tax reforms that Republican Gov. Greg Abbott and the Texas Legislature called historic earlier this summer. The average effective tax rate for single-family homes in Texas was 2.18 percent in 2018, third-highest in the nation, according to a study by ATTOM Data Solutions.  Starting next year, cities and counties will be barred from increasing property tax collections more than 3.5 percent in any year without a vote of the public. Currently, the state has an 8-percent limit, called the rollback rate, that state lawmakers say has allowed cities and counties to overtax homeowners. The lack of a state income tax makes Texas municipalities especially reliant on property tax revenue. view article arw

Bluff Dale ISD approves tax rate

September 2308:30 AM

Following a public hearing, Bluff Dale ISD approved a $2,750,525 budget for the 2019/2020 school year. They also approved a tax rate of $1.2383. This includes $1.0683 for maintenance and operations and $0.17 for interest and sinking. This rate is $0.13 lower than last year’s rate of $1.37. This decrease is due to action taken by the Texas legislature in House Bill 3 to compress the maintenance and operations tax. HB 3, combined with growth in enrollment, and the beginning of a high school, Bluff Dale is no longer subject to recapture payments to the state required by “Robin Hood” legislation. view article arw

Kilgore ISD trustees consulted Monday with the district’s attorney in closed session about ongoing homestead exemption lawsuit against the district. Axberg v. Kilgore ISD was filed in September 2016 in Gregg County by John Claude Axberg, Darlene Axberg and Sheila Anderson, residents of Kilgore ISD’s tax district. view article arw

State officials and lakefront property owners north of San Antonio agreed to not drain four lakes whose 90-year-old dams are at risk of collapsing, under the condition that people must stay off the lakes.  Hundreds of property owners, represented by two attorneys, filed suits seeking to stop the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority from draining Lake Placid, Lake McQueeney, Lake Gonzales and Meadow Lake. Two other lakes, Dunlap and Wood, were already drained after floodgate failures on each of their dams in May of this year and 2016, respectively view article arw

City officials here held their second tax rate hearing Monday for the public to provide feedback to commissioners before they vote later this month to increase the property tax rate in McAllen, which would pay for drainage and traffic projects that voters approved in a 2018 bond election. But the only people who showed up for Monday’s hearing were city staff and a student required to attend a city meeting. view article arw

WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL)—After discovering the Texas Education Agency may nullify the WFISD Tax Ratification Election, board members are still planning for a school bond election despite the potential of losing an estimated $1.4 million in additional funds.  “I am not in favor of choice, I’m not in favor of two unequal high schools, we need a 5A and a 5A,” one Wichita Falls resident attending Monday evening’s school board meeting said. view article arw

SEGUIN — The Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority and lakefront property owners who sued the agency agreed Monday afternoon to a compromise: the four lakes won’t be drained, at least for now, but people and their boats have to stay off the reservoirs.  In addition, an appointed three-member panel of experts will determine the future use of lakes McQueeney, Placid, Meadow and Gonzales.  The accord, formally known as a temporary injunction, was hashed out between attorneys for the GBRA and for two separate sets of lake property owners who sued the agency to prevent the draining of the lakes.  The GBRA had planned to begin draining Gonzales, the first of the four lakes, on Monday. view article arw

Somewhere along the road from Brownsville to South Padre Island, at the southern tip of Texas’ Gulf Coast, things take a turn for the picturesque. Clues of the Port of Brownsville’s transportation industry—cranes, storage tanks, floodlights—vanish. To your left, the Bahia Grande, a 6,500-acre tidal basin, yawns into the distance. To your right, a swath of salt-tolerant black mangroves recedes toward the ship channel, sheltering nesting birds and filtering water. Tricolor squadrons of blue herons, great white egrets, and roseate spoonbills stalk their prey as enormous brown pelicans battle through heavy currents overhead. Somewhere, a rare ocelot lurks in a patch of thornscrub. view article arw

Humble ISD’s school board approved a significant property tax rate reduction on the heels of increased state funding during its monthly meeting on Tuesday. The district’s rate dropped to nearly $1.42 per $100 valuation - a decrease of about 10 cents. Residents with a home valued at $200,000 would save about $200 on their property tax bill. view article arw

Property owners in Houston ISD will see a 5.8 percent reduction in their school tax rate in 2019, the result of state legislation passed this spring, after the district’s school board on Thursday approved a rate cut. The reduction will help offset rising tax bills tied to annual increases in property values in HISD, the state’s largest school district. Property values in the district have risen annually by an average of roughly 7 percent over the past five years, meaning taxpayers likely will see relatively similar school tax bills this year when compared to 2018. view article arw

A health policy organization is calling for a tax on sugary drinks, among 30 other policy recommendations, in light of a new report that finds 1 in 3 Americans of all ages is obese. The Trust for America's Health based its report in part on newly released data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, and analysis by TFAH provides an annual snapshot of obesity rates nationwide. view article arw