Remember the days when the air was filled with promises from the statewide leadership that they would cut property taxes by one-third, maybe even one-half? Reality can be such a bummer sometimes.
Texas property owners would get a small tax break next year, with another cut coming in 2007 if voters approve a statewide property tax, under the latest version of the Senate's school finance plan unveiled Monday.
The plan would reduce taxes for school maintenance and operations by 20 cents to $1.30 per $100 assessed valuation next year. In 2007, property owners would see another 20-cent reduction to $1.10 if a constitutional amendment authorizing a statewide property tax passes.
If the amendment fails, the tax rate would remain at $1.30.
In January, senators promised to lower property taxes from the current $1.50 to $1. Senate leaders said they still would like to provide the full 50-cent reduction but may not be able to fund the final 10 cents until 2008.
The finance committee still is working on the details of a business and sales tax plan to pay for the property tax cut and education spending boost. [Senate Finance Committee Chairman Steve] Ogden said the long-awaited bill might be discussed by the committee on Friday.