Policy foundation seeks another special session for property tax reform


Hopes for property tax reform ended when the Senate adjourned Tuesday night.   Contributed photo

The Texas Public Policy Foundation is pushing for another special session of the legislature to deal with the property taxes.

The Texas Legislature ended its special session late Tuesday without passing property tax reform, a top priority of Gov. Greg Abbott. The measure failed despite a lobbying campaign by supporters, including the Texas Public Policy Foundation.

The foundation bought air time to argue property taxes and forced land annexation. The legislature did send a bill to Abbott on the latter issue that essentially allows for a vote of affected residents prior to cities annexing their land.

"These ads are a way to take our message directly to Texans and keep a focus on the issues that are important to their lives," Alicia Pierce, communications manager for the foundation, said. "We seek to keep the conversation going about the need for annexation and property tax reform and these radio and print ads are another way to do it."

In a statement Wednesday, Kevin Roberts, executive vice president of the Texas Public Policy Foundation, said, "Though progress was made in the first-called special session, Texans need additional reforms sooner rather than later. The Texas Public Policy Foundation would welcome another special session to address some pressing issues, namely the problem of ever-escalating property taxes. For Texans to flourish, that problem needs to be fixed.”

Passage of property tax reform was stymied by time after the Senate adjourned on Tuesday night rather than continuing into Wednesday, the last day the legislature could have sat. There was no reconciliation with the House bill.

"We are not going to accept the take-it-or-leave it proposal from the House, and we are going to fight another day," state Sen. Paul Bettencourt (R-Houston) told the Texas Tribune. "I hope the governor calls us back as soon as possible."

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