A look at Texas' Propositions 1 and 2 on May 7 ballot

Homeowners dealing with skyrocketing property tax bills could get some relief if voters pass two constitutional amendments on May 7.

But be warned, the wording on the ballot can be confusing. This is what you’ll see on your ballot under Proposition 1:

“The constitutional amendment authorizing the legislature to provide for the reduction of the amount of a limitation on the total amount of ad valorem taxes that may be imposed for general elementary and secondary public school purposes on the residence homestead of a person who is elderly or disabled to reflect any statutory reduction from the preceding tax year in the maximum compressed rate of the maintenance and operations taxes imposed for those purposes on the homestead.”

If passed, Proposition 1 would amend the state constitution to authorize the state legislature to reduce the property tax limit for school maintenance and operations taxes imposed on the homesteads of disabled residents or those over the age of 65.

The amount paid to public schools is typically the largest obligation on a property tax bill. The state would make up the difference and, according to the Legislative Budget Board, the reduction of those property taxes is estimated to cost $744 million from 2024 to 2026.

The annual savings for the estimated 2 million exemption holders would be $109 in 2024 and $124 in 2025, though actual savings will vary due to actual property value.

This is what you’ll see under Proposition 2 on your ballot:

"The constitutional amendment increasing the amount of the residence homestead exemption from ad valorem taxation for public school purposes from $25,000 to $40,000."

If passed, Proposition 2 would raise the homestead exemption from $25,000 to $40,000 for school district property taxes. According to calculations released by the state, the amendment is expected to save 5.67 million homeowners about $175 annually.

Both of these propositions will cut independent school district property tax bills by increasing homeowner exemptions that will save money for all 5.67 million homesteads in the state of Texas.

All homeowners with homesteads will save money on their property tax bills. 

Over 65 homeowners will see their freeze values actually decline, and lifetime savings from both bills in the many thousands.

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