If you are as concerned about rising taxes as I am, then I am asking you to come to the City Council meeting on Tuesday, tomorrow, at 6pm, at City Hall and make your voice heard.
City staff and some of our elected leaders are planning to effectively raise your property taxes at a time when the city has more revenue coming in than ever before and when other cities around us are taking steps to lower their tax rates as a way to combat ever-increasing appraised values.
Instead of reducing our tax rate, the newest city budget proposes a one-time credit on residential water bills which the city says equates to a 5-cent tax rate reduction. NOT EXACTLY TRUE. Additionally, the water bill credit does nothing for businesses. They would not get any relief.
At the August 16th City Council meeting, a number of residents spoke before the council urging them to lower the city tax rate. Apparently, their plea fell on deaf ears.
A plan was suggested to give residential water users a monthly credit on their water bill which amounted to $132 for the year. The city equates this to a 5-cent tax rate reduction. That statement is largely false, and it is irresponsible of staff to promote that idea.
Here are the numbers:
Property Taxable Value $327,000 $500,000 $750,000
Less Homestead Exemption $(65,000) $(100,000) $(150,000)
Net Taxable Property Value $261,600 $400,000 $600,000
Tax Rate per $100 0.589 0.589 0.589
Est. Tax 1540.82 2356.00 3534.00
5-cent Tax Rate Reduction 0.539 0.539 0.539
Est. Tax 1410.02 2156.00 3234.00
Tax Savings with Lower Tax Rate $130.80 $200.00 $300.00
Proposed Water Bill Credit $132 $132 $132
Difference $(1.20) $68.00 $168.00
In most instances, a tax rate reduction will provide
more savings to residents than a water bill credit.
NOT LOWERING THE CITY TAX RATE EFFECTIVELY RAISES YOUR PROPERTY TAXES.
While the Dallas Central Appraisal District sets property values, the only way a city can offset the huge annual increases in appraised values is to lower the city tax rate.
Three of your council members and the mayor favor leaving the tax rate unchanged so the additional funds can be used to build the mayor’s signature park, give additional funds to Metrocrest Services for rental assistance and other non-infrastructure related items.
While the amounts above may not seem like a lot, it is important to note that many residents are stressed. Wages have not kept pace with the high cost of living and inflation continues to rise. To giveaway precious dollars at this time to fund pet projects or charities is not a wise investment of your resources.
Additionally, why should renters receive the proposed credit? Property owners would be subsidizing their water usage. That does not seem equitable.
Furthermore, if you wish to donate your money to charity, that should be your personal decision, not the city’s.
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
It is imperative that you come to the council meeting on Tuesday evening. Sign up to speak by completing a Citizen Comment Form. Click FORM and submit it online. Bring your neighbors.
I have a Texas Department of Public Safety class on Tuesday’s and I will not be able to be in attendance. It is vital that you show up and speak to council about this.
Also, send a note to your council representatives and let them know how you feel about higher taxes.
Robert Dye email@example.com
Omar Roman firstname.lastname@example.org
Michael Driskill email@example.com
Tracy Williams firstname.lastname@example.org
Richard Jackson email@example.com
David Merritt firstname.lastname@example.org
We need your help. Please join your neighbors in making sure our Council listens to the residents it is supposed to be serving.