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    About Paul Bettencourt

    First elected to the Senate in 2014, Senator Paul Bettencourt represents Senate District 7, which encompasses most of West Harris County. He previously served 10 years, from 1998 – 2008, as the Harris County Tax Assessor-Collector, where he introduced “Smart Government” at the Harris County Tax Office and developed a customer service-driven organization. His team created the first major county online property tax payment system and the first county tax office website with online vehicle registration in Texas. (His motto was “Get on-line, not in-line.”) He was well-known as the “Tax Man” for his outspoken efforts to cut property taxes.

    In the most recent Legislative Session, Senator Bettencourt successfully passed Senate Bill 2, the Texas Property Tax Reform and Transparency Act of 2019, by a vote of 21-9 to bring meaningful property tax reform and relief to all Texas taxpayers. This was the first major property tax reform legislation in almost 40 years, and the culmination of two decades of advocacy.  He also continued his work on adult stem cell therapies in Texas by sponsoring HB 3148, building upon previous legislative sessions to get  government out of the way, allowing new therapies to flourish and give terminally and chronically ill patients hope for a better quality of life.  His work during the 86th Session earned him the distinction of “Senate MVP” by Capitol Inside, “Bull of the Brazos” by Texas Monthly, and he was given the “Citizen’s Choice Award” by Empower Texans.  He has also been called an “architect of tax relief” by Governor Greg Abbott.

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    1 hour ago
    Paul Bettencourt

    Only 24 hours after Governor Greg Abbott added property tax relief to the agenda for the third Special Session, the Senate did what it does best by quickly voting out my SB1 30-1, the top legislative priority of Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, and it’s now off to the House!

    SB1’s goal is to take a minimum of $2 billion dollars from Texas’ projected surplus general revenue and use it towards a buy-down of school districts’ “maintenance and operation” property tax rates in 2022. That number could potentially go up from $2B to $4B!

    Very well summed up by NPRA's Andrew Schneider — “The measure would provide a minimum of $2 billion in funding to independent school districts, in return for which ISDs would reduce homeowners' tax rates by roughly 6.6 cents. For example, the owner of a home with a taxable value of $300,000 would see their tax bill reduced by $200” (Schneider, 2021).

    www.houstonpublicmedia.org/articles/news/politics/2021/09/21/408921/property-tax-relief-not-yet-o...

    SB1 is also unique in that it calls for the first ever formula split of excess general revenue funds! After the first $500 million of any surplus we see, any remaining money would be split 50/50 between Texas’ general revenue fund and additional buy-downs of schools. That's when the additional $2 billion could go up to $4 billion which could then raise the property tax relief on a median Texas home to $400 in 2022.

    As Lt. Governor Patrick said, “This signifies a quantum shift in the way we think about spending our surplus dollars…Texas homeowners must receive tax relief before we commit to any new spending!” I couldn’t agree with him more because as I have said for 20 years now - it’s the taxpayers money!

    I also want to thank my 10 bipartisan co-authors for their support of SB1 from all around the state: Senators Buckingham, Campbell, Creighton, Hall, Hinojosa, Kolkhorst, Lucio, Paxton, Perry, and Springer.
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    Only 24 hours after Governor Greg Abbott added property tax relief to the agenda for the third Special Session, the Senate did what it does best by quickly voting out my SB1 30-1, the top legislative priority of Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, and it’s now off to the House! 

SB1’s goal is to take a minimum of $2 billion dollars from Texas’ projected surplus general revenue and use it towards a buy-down of school districts’ “maintenance and operation” property tax rates in 2022. That number could potentially go up from $2B to $4B!

Very well summed up by NPRAs Andrew Schneider — “The measure would provide a minimum of $2 billion in funding to independent school districts, in return for which ISDs would reduce homeowners tax rates by roughly 6.6 cents. For example, the owner of a home with a taxable value of $300,000 would see their tax bill reduced by $200” (Schneider, 2021). 

https://www.houstonpublicmedia.org/articles/news/politics/2021/09/21/408921/property-tax-relief-not-yet-on-special-session-agenda-appears-on-fast-track-in-senate/

SB1 is also unique in that it calls for the first ever formula split of excess general revenue funds! After the first $500 million of any surplus we see, any remaining money would be split 50/50 between Texas’ general revenue fund and additional buy-downs of schools. Thats when the additional $2 billion could go up to $4 billion which could then raise the property tax relief on a median Texas home to $400 in 2022.

As Lt. Governor Patrick said, “This signifies a quantum shift in the way we think about spending our surplus dollars…Texas homeowners must receive tax relief before we commit to any new spending!” I couldn’t agree with him more because as I have said for 20 years now - it’s the taxpayers money! 

I also want to thank my 10 bipartisan co-authors for their support of SB1 from all around the state: Senators Buckingham, Campbell, Creighton, Hall, Hinojosa, Kolkhorst, Lucio, Paxton, Perry, and Springer.

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    This is a useless bill. The appraisal district will eat that up by next year.

    The American people in general need to stop with superficial measures over character and credibility. Since there is no political party that is 100% honest, it's to get back to absolutes. I'll leave this here as a reminder: What makes a person valuable or worthless comes down to a single question: Can you trust them?

    Thank you Senator for looking out for us.

    Thank you Senator Paul Bettencourt for working 24/7 !!!!!

    A couple of hundred dollars is not going to help. What a joke.

    Paul Bettencourt, I watched the 2019 session on livestream. It's wasted time I'll never get back. You said all the right things. But ultimately nothing was done to provide significant relief to Texas homeowners. Here we are 2 years later with still higher tax bills than before. You guys do nothing but give lip service to temporarily appease people. And now you put forth this joke of a bill seemingly proud that a few hundred bucks savings is a big deal? You must really think we're as stupid as you look. It's like if a store were to double the price of one of it's products and then advertise a 10% discount sale as a "GREAT DEAL!" Don't you get it man? The damage has BEEN DONE. We have seen our taxes double and more over the past 10 years. Less than 10 years in some cases. You think a measly $200 really makes a dent? That amounts to 54 cents a day. Gee thanks alot. I can buy a snickers bar or a coke with that. Is that $200 savings going to help me fix my roof? HELL NO! Don't you understand as values go up and the tax rates never come down Texas homeowners are paying taxes on UNREALIZED GAINS? Home values have increased due to a hot market. That does not mean Texas homeowners suddenly are flush with cash in their bank accounts. You know why Mr. Bettencourt? Because home owners do not have access to the increased value (cash) of their homes because it is locked up IN THE HOMES! Don't you get that? Do you guys completely lack common sense? The property tax system you bozos are reluctant to get rid of makes the false assumption that since a home has dramatically gone up in value the owner must be financially prosperous. That is not the case. Many Texas home owners lost jobs and businesses over the past 18 months resulting in loss of income. So the one asset they have that is owned free and clear is jeopardized by a greedy tax system that can TAKE their homes from them for failure to pay the extortion called property tax. You need to get it together man. This is Texas. It's suppose to be the freest state in the union and yet even Florida is doing better than us with property taxes. Their effective tax rate is about HALF of what ours is. Don't be fooled by the shell game played. Just because Texas does not have a state income tax doesn't mean we don't pay more in property taxes alone than residents pay with property taxes and state income tax combined. You know why? Because states like AZ for example have a significantly lower property tax rate. Let's do better than Florida. Let's ELIMINATE property taxes once and for all. No one should be taxed on something they have already bought & paid for! Stop being a clown and give us something of TRUE substance for once.

    Still waiting on property tax freezes for seniors that are being priced out of their homes by rising property tax valuations on their homes

    End Property Tax End it Stop Property Taxes Stop making us rent our homes, farms, ranches, and business property from the government Kill property tax entirely Repeal Property Tax legislation and derive state revenues from commerce in the form of retail sales taxes This can be phased in over a 6-8 year period Take the taxing authority away from School Boards and make them earn revenue on a merit basis from the general fund

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    It's the taxpayers $! It has been an honor to work with @LtGovTX to champion prop. tax relief over the years. SB1 with its 10 bipartisan authors passed the Senate today 30-1. Lt. Gov. Patrick is right - when TX receives a surplus in $, a portion MUST be returned to the taxpayers!

    Office of the Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick@LtGovTX

    My statement on the passage of #SB1 — Property Tax Relief:

    #txlege
    http://ow.ly/nnSU50GePXh

    #SB1 with $2 billion (up to $4 billion) of property tax relief passes Senate Finance 14-0! Reduces median home property tax bills by a minimum of $200 (maximum $400 in 2022) if passed by the #txlege. Lt. Governor @DanPatrick priority! @TPPF & @txtaxpayers testified in favor!

    Here we go! Third Special Session will begin at 10AM and my bill is the first on the list #SB1! Filed it this morning, and can't wait to get started to make your property taxes even lower! @TPPF @txtaxpayers @DanPatrick

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