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Dallas City Council Lowers Tax Rate, Expects Increased Collections

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Dallas City Council Chambers | Image by City Of Dallas

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The Dallas City Council unanimously approved reducing the property tax rate on Wednesday, but at the same time expects a substantial increase in property tax collections in the coming year.

This is because the assessed property values of homes are expected to increase due to the growth of the city and rising prices.

The property tax rate was lowered to 74.58 cents per $100 in assessed home value, which likely will not affect most homeowners. Roughly 54 cents of the total will go toward the general fund, while 20 cents will be directed to the debt service fund.

Immediately after voting for the rate reduction, the council approved “A resolution ratifying the increase in total property tax revenues,” estimating an additional $132 million in tax levies.

Some Dallas residents expressed dismay regarding the changes, acknowledging that they expected to pay more overall, as reported by The Dallas Express. One suggested lowering the property tax rate was little more than “sleight of hand” by the council.

Mayor Eric Johnson said deciding on the budget is the council’s most important vote, and suggested that the newly approved budget was the “best budget I’ve seen since I’ve been mayor of this city.”

In total, the approved budget is not to exceed roughly $4.7 billion, with a $1.7 billion general fund and $956 million in capital funds.

He also said the budget is not perfect but that lowering homeowner property tax rates was an important step because residents needed “tax relief” to help mitigate the rising cost of housing, even though taxpayers will not see a smaller property tax bill.

“But to me, it was very clear what we needed to do this year,” said Johnson, explaining that the only thing the City can do is control the tax rates, while the County Appraisal District controls the home appraisal values.

“I wish we could have done more, but I’m proud of this historical move we are making today,” he said.

Not everyone on the city council necessarily felt the same way, however.

Councilmember Cara Mendelsohn suggested the City did not go far enough in lowering the property tax rate, pointing to the fact that the budget is now anticipating over $132 million in additional collections.

“The tax rate could have been, and should have been lower,” Mendelsohn said during the meeting while noting her concerns about the budget.

She particularly stressed her concerns about increased spending and believed the next budget crisis would be focused on pension obligations.

Mendelsohn repeated the $132 million increase in taxpayer money for emphasis.

“That’s all-new revenue dollars we didn’t have this last fiscal year,” she said. “And I just want us to remember that.”

“We don’t have an income problem; we have a spending problem,” she said.

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Don Mathisen
Don Mathisen
2 months ago

Kevin, nice job reporting a complex story.

Pap
Pap
2 months ago

Lowered to 74.58 from WHAT? To report thoroughly, the present rate should have been mentioned. That reminds me of all the ads from products to insurance, stating “Get $200 off”. Original price never stated. $200 off of what? Nowadays, prices are all over the place. It’s maddening. When I was growing up, the price of a can of corn would be the same at pretty much every grocery store, unless it was on sale. Now prices go up and down constantly like a yoyo.

So they raise property values like madmen, then give a miniscule break in taxes. What a scam.

Last edited 2 months ago by Pap