A recent survey of Dallas voters conducted by Garin-Hart-Yang Research Group on behalf of Mayor Eric Johnson found that 71% want lower property taxes for homes and businesses.
Lowering property taxes was deemed to have a “widespread appeal,” as almost three-quarters of respondents viewed it as a “very/fairly important” issue, according to the survey.
When the $4.5 billion City budget was adopted last year, City Manager T.C. Broadnax’s suggestion to lower property taxes was enacted — the most significant tax reduction the City has seen in decades. The property tax rate saw a $0.0275 decrease, going from $0.7733 to $0.7458 per $100 valuation.
Mayor Johnson has claimed this tax reduction has made Dallas an economically advantageous location. However, according to this poll, Dallas voters believe property taxes must be lowered further.
City officials have said that housing in Dallas must be made more accessible and more affordable, especially in light of the city’s rampant crisis of homelessness and vagrancy.
Lower property taxes translate to lower monthly payments, which could make it easier for some to qualify for a mortgage.
Charles E. Gilliland, a research economist at Texas A&M, wrote that property tax is “consistently” found to be “the most disliked tax.” Gilliland notes that taxpayers “remit a large sum all at once” rather than paying property taxes incrementally and that “payment must be made without regard to the property owner’s current financial condition.”
Another reason many support lower property taxes is that “many Texans approaching retirement worry that a rising property tax liability may force them from their homes,” according to Gilliland.
“In addition, property taxes take a large bite out of the net income of Texas commercial and industrial entities,” he writes.
However, even some who acknowledge the advantages of lower property taxes maintain that higher property taxes can have benefits as well.
The same Garin-Hart-Yang survey also found that one of the top concerns among Dallasites is education, and property taxes reportedly make up about half of the funds directed to public schools.
“The only way to really institute meaningful property tax reductions would either be to find some other revenue source or to substantially cut education budgets,” said Gilliland, per The Texas Tribune. “Neither one of those options is palatable in today’s political atmosphere.”
Local CPA and founder of Alicorn Investment Management Bill Dendy told The Dallas Express that the lack of a state income tax in Texas contributes to higher property taxes.
“Having lived in Dallas County for most of my adult life, our property taxes, and taxes in general, are high, but we don’t have the state income tax, so you gotta pick things one way or another,” said Dendy.
The survey found that other top concerns among local citizens are crime, public safety, and homelessness. In addition, more than 80% of Dallas voters support increasing salaries, benefits, and training for police officers.
Very informative article.
Property tax revenues will probably slide in the last half of 2023 as the recession comes.
Many states have a property tax plus a sales tax (including for food items). I have lived in some of those states in the past. Fortunately, TX has only a sales tax for non food items. We should be thankful for that that. But, I am sure everybody, including myself, would like a lower property tax. This time TX has a budget surplus and it is possible that we can hope for a lower property tax.
If my taxes pay for the school, feed these kids a proper lunch. They throw away more food than the kids eat, kids are going home hungry.
My property taxes went up $900 in the last 3 to 4 yrs.
To the retiree’s who think you are getting a big tax break, not happening. I have been officially retired since March /2020, YES during the pandemic. If you sell your homes it will get worse because new home have increased, apartments prices are worse.
We have a 32 billion surplus in Texas, this was because of sales taxes. The utilities have been reduced because you have retired. Senior’s are taking jobs that some of the younger one want take.
The younger will will use child care as an excuse. You can put children in early childhood classes and negotiate with a part time company, while their children are in school. I retired at 72 but will probably get a summer job to pay my taxes. You do what you have to, to make it work.