Find a way to get someone else to pay

The voters in Texas just approved a $10,000 increase in the homestead exemption.

Homeowners will see their property taxes go down until the school districts can react and raise their tax rates.  They will either need to cut spending or raise their rates.  Much of what the districts spend money on is mandated by feral and state rules.

The long term effect of the increase in the homestead exemption will be to shift more of the tax burden away from homeowners to people who rent their living quarters.  Apartments and rental houses do not qualify for the homestead exemption.

We already exempt homeowners over the age of 64 from increases in their school taxes.  Now the young people in our community who don’t have the resources or are just not ready to buy a house will end up paying more of the costs to operate our schools.

Senior citizens tend to vote more regularly than younger ones do.  With their school district taxes frozen they are in a situation where voting for a tax increase costs them nothing.

We deserve better


9 Responses to Find a way to get someone else to pay

  1. Fed Up says:

    Increase sales taxes so everyone pays their share.


    • Reality Checker says:

      Even if you increase the sales tax, everyone who uses our infrastructure and services still would not pay their share because people from Mexico receive sales tax rebate, so they don’t even pay sales tax on a lot of the things they buy. That’s part of the reason why our local financial system is broken. We are subsidizing their retail shopping, which is great if you own the Fountains or Cielo Vista Mall or are a retailer. Even the Mexicans who own homes here are able to avoid paying sales tax if they still own property in Mexico.


      • Anonymous says:

        And what’s to prevent relatives or friends of those “With a Mexico address” on their Passport and Drivers licence (that MAY actually live . . . . IN. . El Paso, to GIVE (or share) the receipts that have sales tax, to them so that they will have a WHOLE BUNCH of receipts and get the Sales Tax refunded on . . . all of them?

        So, the refunding of Sales Tax could be much much greater than what is ACTUALLY purchased by Mexicans with Mexico addresses.


  2. taxpayer 13 says:

    I know this is a tired old argument but the schools do not need the money. They need to manage the money they have better. They need to invest in teachers, not new buildings and fine arts centers or outside consultants. Zero out the budget every year and find out where the waste is.


  3. Helen Marshall says:

    The “free money” for roads amendment that was passed suffers from the same problem – it is not new money, just money diverted from sales taxes, etc that would otherwise be used for, say, parks…I voted against it and against the increase homestead exemption even though at 71 I would apparently benefit. I cannot support bad ideas even if they appear to be good for me!


  4. Jerry K says:

    What bothers me is the incompetence of the school districts or maybe it’s corruption. YISD has a school built in 1989 that is falling down! I can’t trust these type of people with hundreds of millions of dollars, so I vote no.

    Now, if they packaged it on a pay as you go basis, maybe fix a school or three, and let us see how they manage it, that I could support. Othwise it’s just a feeding frenzy for the construction industry that owns the boards.


  5. angrytaxpayer says:

    First, as someone approaching retirement with a husband who qualifies for the senior homestead exemption, I can tell you we vote no on every bond issue, spending proposal and tax increase. So do most of our senior friends. The folks who think these things are cool tend to be younger folks who buy into the mantra that it won’t cost you anything or it will bring higher paying 21st century jobs or its for the children. The schools here are spending way too much, we don’t need five school districts, there is no real attempt to attract outside industries and we bend over backwards for Juarez residents who find many ways to avoid paying for the infrastructure they use (false addresses to send kids to school, use of manifestos to avoid sales tax, no toll liability and of course no auto insurance when they hit our vehicles). Some of them who own property here file for all homestead exemptions even while representing to ICE that their primary residence is in Juarez in order to get a laser visa. The right answer is cut spending. Find ways to sell old school property instead of holding on to it. End the ability of Mexican nationals to avoid paying their fair share (and yes I know some do.) But don’t blame the elderly. We aren’t the ones voting for this.


  6. Deputy Dawg says:

    No doubt this will be headed for litigation. The state, since as far back as the mid 1980’s has been under Texas Supreme court order to change the way it has funded public education. Every single faux attempt by the legislature has been ruled unconstitutional. The legislature and the Governor has used that excuse (Its is under litigation or we are waiting for a final verdict) to kick the proverbial can of education funding down the road for well over 35 years now.
    By increasing the Homestead exemption, the funding formula becomes even less fair, with again, property poor districts like every single one in the El Paso area, taking the greatest hit.

    The question we have to ask ourselves, again is this: What is our El Paso legislative delegation doing as a group to fix the problem other than introducing bills that they know will have no chance at all to even get out of committee? What are they doing other than just saying”The system is unfair?” what is their plan to help El Paso school district funding? My suspicion is that there is no plan. What a surprise.

    On the other side of the court, what is the city doing to make El Paso more property rich? I see tons of strip malls going up..I see very little industry. Lots of strip malls that are built and lay fallow are only helping the owners because they can use them as tax write-offs. They do nothing for the children of El Paso because they produce no taxes. It is a zero sum gain. They pay $1000 in property tax, then write off $1000 as a business expense.

    I guess we can’t expect Austin to help us when we don’t even try to help ourselves.


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