State Representative Hugh Shine, R-Temple, said he seeks to enact Texans’ property taxes through three laws he tabled on Friday: House Bill 223, House Bill 224, and House Joint Resolution 21.
Local lawmakers said House Bill 223 and joint House Resolution 21 – to expand measures under House Bill 3, the school finance reform bill passed last session – would help disabled Texans and those of old age 65 years and older benefit to a large extent.
“House Bill 3 saw a reduction in school tax rates for property taxpayers, with the state providing additional dollars to school districts in exchange for lower local school tax rates,” Shine chief of staff said Charlotte Blakemore in a press release .
However, some Texans did not see these benefits.
“House Bill 223 / House Joint Resolution 21 would again give voters the opportunity to extend House Bill 3’s tax rate cut to those over 65 or disabled people so that they too would see their school maintenance and business tax rates cut,” Blakemoreke said.
Meanwhile, House Bill 224 would allow residents to get tax exemptions faster on a homestead they bought.
Shine said current legislation requires homeowners to wait until January 1 of the following year before receiving exemptions.
“House Bill 224 is important because homeowners are currently losing months to almost a full year of homestead leave and are paying more property taxes than they should,” Shine said. “These laws will actually give Texans a lower property tax bill.”
These filings followed the proclamation made Thursday by Texas Governor Greg Abbott asking the legislature to enter a special session.
“The 87th legislative session was a monumental success for the people of Texas, but … we have a responsibility to finish the work on behalf of all Texans,” Abbott said in a statement. “… I look forward to working with my legislative partners to pass this legislation as we create a better future for all who call Texas home.”
Shine said he was glad Abbott sees property tax relief as an issue that needs to be addressed.
“I am grateful that Governor Abbott added a property tax break to the call for the special session. This is a topic that is very important to me and to everyone across Texas, ”Shine said. “I look forward to working with Senator Paul Bettencourt, R-Houston, Senator Lois Kolkhorst, R-Brenham, and Representative Donna Howard, Austin, on House Bill 223 and House Joint dissolution 21. “
House Bill 223, House Bill 224 and House Joint Resolution 21 are now waiting to be referred to a House committee for a public hearing, Shine’s office said.