It happened again: yet another deceptive tax increase by a major city.
Last night, Fort Worth officially adopted its new tax rate of 71.25. This comes despite opposition from the public and two city council members dissenting to the tax raise. Fort Worth was one of many large cities to deceptively send out notices championing a lower tax rate. However, what most of them forget to tell you is that they did not lower to the no-new-revenue rate, which means they are raising your taxes.
Sadly, multiple people are to blame.
First, we must hold the city council and newly elected leftist mayor Mattie Parker accountable for refusing to listen to taxpayers and raising taxes regardless of their outcry. But we must also blame the Texas legislature and Governor Abbott for refusing to pass meaningful tax reform for decades. Not only have they given their voters reason to be angry, but they have also given their political enemies a rallying cry. Fran Rhodes, president of True Texas Project, who was at the meeting had this to say in a Facebook post:
UPDATE 9/27: They did it. They approved the higher 71.25 rate. Crain and Blaylock were the only “no” votes. Crain tried to propose a 69.25 rate, but they wouldn’t go for it.
Comments included:Mayor Parker – Yes, we realize taxpayers are suffering, but it’s mostly the school districts’ fault, so we have to change that at the state level. Also reminded us that the average increase is only about $100 per year per taxpayer. (Uh… Mayor Parker, it’s the PRINCIPLE that matters, not the amount.)Councilman Nettles – It’s physically impossible (or maybe he meant “fiscally”) to reduce the rate by 2 cents. Impossible!Councilman Blaylock – I made a campaign promise to not vote for any rate above the NRR, so that’s what my vote today will reflect.Councilwoman Beck – Wanted to point out that the city has LOWERED the tax (rate) by 14.25 cents over the last six years. (We should be grateful!)Most of them – A 2 cent reduction represents $20 million. Where do we cut that? Fire? Police? Road repairs? Infrastructure projects? City Manager says if 2 cents is applied evenly across the board, that would mean a $10 million reduction in police budgets. (Yes, I’m sure there certainly can’t be any place to cut besides police, fire, and roads.)
So, get ready to write bigger property tax checks. The City of Fort Worth just CANNOT make any cuts to the proposed budget, but you guys writing the property tax checks can certainly tighten your belts by $100 per year. So, suck it up!
So, what can you do to get involved?
The next legislative session is set to begin in January of 2023. Your elected officials need to hear from you.
Go read the Texas Prosperity Plan for yourself and voice your support for REAL property tax relief by signing up to support the TPP. You can also sign up for The Fiscal Note to stay updated on all fiscal issues that affect Texans, especially our broken property tax system. We CAN get real tax relief if we amplify our voices loudly enough.