House Move Gives Gov. Greg Abbott's Tax Bill Momentum

AUSTIN -- Taking a significant step toward passing one of Gov. Greg Abbott's biggest priorities of the special legislative session, a panel of House lawmakers on Friday approved a bill that would limit how much local governments can increase property tax rates."It's not been easy, but we're getting somewhere," said Rep. Dennis Bonnen, chairman of the Ways & Means Committee and author of House Bill 4.Bonnen's bill would reduce the tax rate at which cities or counties could be forced to seek voter permission to increase property taxes. Currently, voters can petition for a rollback election when the revenue generate by a new tax rate increases 8 percent. It would lower the rollback rate to 6 percent. During the regular legislative session, the same House committee rejected a measure with a lower rollback rate, and the proposal stalled in the lower chamber. Its failure is among the issues that prompted Abbott to call a special session.Abbott and other Republicans have said the bill is needed to provide relief to property tax payers who are struggling to pay ever higher amounts.  Continue reading...

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