FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 28, 2023
AUSTIN, TX — Today, the Texas Senate reconvened for the first day of the 2nd Called Special Session. The Senate fast-tracked the passage of Senate Joint Resolution (SJR) 1 and Senate Bill (SB) 1 both by Senator Paul Bettencourt. Senator Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa, Vice Chair of the Senate Finance Committee co-authored both bills. These bills provide a record $18 billion property tax plan to cut homeowners and business owners taxes. SJR 1 would put to the voters the option to increase the Homestead Exemption to $100,000 from the current $40,000. SJR 1, along with SB 1, would provide Texas homestead owners an average savings of $1,270-$1,350 the first year and up to $1,500 the second year for over-65 disabled homeowners. SJR 1 was amended on the Senate floor to authorize voters to approve $2.2 billion in state funds to be used to provide a supplemental payment of $2,000 to each full-time urban classroom teacher and $6,000 to each full-time rural classroom teacher for the next two years.
SB 1 also lowers the school district rollback rate 30% from 2.5% to 1.75%, lowering the property tax bill for property owners by billions of dollars a year while holding school districts harmless. SB 1 also helps Texas businesses by doubling the franchise tax exemption, exempting 67,000 Texas businesses. Finally, SB 1 removes the requirement to file a No-Tax Due franchise tax return, saving time and money for the 1.7 million businesses currently filing this form.
Senator Hinojosa released the following statement on the passage of these bills:
“The number one complaint I keep hearing from my constituents is the high cost of property taxes. Property tax relief is important to my constituents and all Texans. High property taxes place a significant burden on homeowners and businesses, making it increasingly difficult for families to afford their homes and stifling economic growth. By providing property tax relief, we can alleviate this financial strain, promote affordability, and create a more prosperous future for all Texans.
By amending SJR 1 on the Senate floor today, we also give voters a chance to authorize $2.2 billion in state funds for a much needed and well-deserved supplemental payment to teachers. As an advocate for quality education and recognizing the invaluable role that teachers play in shaping our future generations, I firmly believe that this amendment is a crucial step towards recognizing and valuing the hard work and dedication of our educators.
I am hopeful that this Special Session we can provide much-needed tax relief and a supplemental payment to teachers. By working together, we can prioritize the financial well-being of our constituents and ensure that our homeowners get the tax relief they need, and our educators receive the recognition and support they deserve. It is crucial that we find common ground and enact meaningful measures that will benefit all Texans.”
Both bills must pass in a special session before August 9th to allow enough time for the November election. If approved by the voters, the $100,000 exemption would be for the 2023 tax year making property tax relief effective immediately. The payments to teachers would be for the 2023-2024 and the 2024-2025 school years.