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Old 06-15-2012, 01:20 PM
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We Texans' plan to eliminate property taxes in Texas

I had urged We Texans to post a FAQ addressing the common concerns and questions I was seeing in various corners when discussing their plan. They have now posted the FAQ along with a summary explanation of their property tax elimination plan and the history of it's evolution:

http://wetexans.com/bold-plan-free-texas/
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Old 06-15-2012, 02:26 PM
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The massive property tax is what we have instead of a state income tax... So comparing Texas to any state with an income tax is not a valid assessment.

The ad valorum tax is the primary source of funding for our public school system... so any attempt to replace it with something less predictable like increased sales taxes would have a massive effect on the ability of education district's ability to forecast revenues and develop budgets.

You have to be able to reasonably forecast revenues to prepare a budget... And having been charged with that task a few times i would need to see that issue addressed before mildly considering a change.
 
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Old 06-15-2012, 02:40 PM
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Their plan has been studied, analyzed and developed over several years (by several different analysts). It's not a trivially considered proposal. FYI:
Quote:
... Rep. Harvey Hilderbran, Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee in the Texas House, has said that he plans to introduce a property tax elimination bill in the upcoming 83rd legislative session which convenes in January 2013. ...
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Old 06-15-2012, 05:35 PM
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Now I have to ask what the property tax rate for Texas really is. I would imagine you have more than one rate; agricultural land has to be far different than urban areas. I can deal with mills if I must but $ per 1000 is easier for most folks to understand.
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Old 06-15-2012, 09:44 PM
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Quote:
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Bold Plan. Free Texas.

... this week about the elimination of property tax.

Property Tax Elimination in Texas: A Detailed Fiscal Analysis. As recommended in this study, we propose that we not only eliminate the property tax in Texas but also all current business taxes as well.
Quote:
Q. Businesses shouldn’t pay any taxes at all. Why are you advocating taxing the job creators?

Q. Businesses shouldn’t be taxed because they will pass on the cost of the business tax to their customers. Ultimately, won’t the individual Texan bear the cost of that tax anyway?

Q. It’s not fair to tax a business on their total sales. Shouldn’t we only tax businesses on their profits?

Q. Won’t a higher sales tax or flat tax on business drive business activity outside the state?

Quote:
ScriptMan: Now I have to ask what the property tax rate for Texas really is.
good point - when mine were reasonable I still did not like paying - but - but > then they quadrupled the tax in "one" year on the small 9 acre Farm and a real sense of loathing did set in ... everything is just fine now <> they passed a law that rates can not rise any greater than 10% in one year **** - no homestead for a second property - fully taxed - 9 acres when considering the cost of Half Acre lots going price X18 gets scary for appraised value - for a Farm.

and why in the above are they including "business" with property tax ??? - that articles real motive I do not believe is really in concern for the plight of homeowners and landuse but more in line with (as usual) padding their profits ...
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Old 06-16-2012, 09:55 AM
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I can assure you that We Texans number one concern is restoring property rights. The plan they were touting a couple of years ago did not reform business taxes and relied solely on adjustments to the sales tax system. They had an analyst study it in more depth though and realized that, while revenue neutral in aggregate, it would have caused unacceptable disparities in some counties. Their current plan addresses that with a "fair tax" (flat tax) on business with less reliance on (or modification to) the existing sales tax structure.

Script - ad valorum property taxes vary from county to county (and city to city). It's not just the tax rate that can be an issue - your tax burden can increase if the appraisal district claims your property increased in value (whether there is any real basis for doing so or not). There are appeals processes, but you are still at the mercy of beaurocrats.
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Old 06-16-2012, 01:22 PM
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@ Bernard. I am well aware of the concept. PVA offices here are required by law to maintain the assessment at 100% of actual market value. I did not notice any of mine going down over the last few years so I think it must be a one way street.

I looked up a couple of rates in Anderson and Calhoun counties. I'm not sure you have much to complain about. Here in Lexington KY we pay 1.08 per 100 or 10.80 1000 for real property at 100% of market value, plus we pay a local income tax of 2.75% (on wages only), a state income tax of 6% (of Federal AGI) and then we have a state sales tax of 6% with food and services exempted.

Get back to me and let me know if you want to exchange tax burdens.
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Old 06-16-2012, 02:57 PM
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Texas tax structure is imperfect, but it's favorable compared to most states, a statement supported by the fact that we're a destination point for relocation, not a point of embarcation. People vote with their feet.

One method of lowering the tax burden on individual homeowners is to encourage commercial development within the area under consideration. The largest part of the ad valorem tax is the school district segment. Corporations pay property taxes but do not have children, so the more commercial development present the lower the taxes needed per residential rooftop to support the education system.

That is why after serving a few terms handling school budgets i slid over to the Planning and Zoning commission to encourage quality commercial growth. A couple of decent sized businesses do wonders for picking up the tab that'd otherwise be on the backs of homeowners without increasing the number of children the district serves.

Last edited by robjones; 06-16-2012 at 03:02 PM.
 
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