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Texas House Committee weighs using COVID relief funding to alleviate property tax burden

The topic is likely to be brought up again in the state's next legislative session.

AUSTIN, Texas — A lot of your neighbors are probably talking about their property appraisals, dreading what this means for next year's property tax bills.

Well, some relief could be in the works.

The Texas House of Representatives Committee on Ways and Means held a hearing at the Capitol in Austin on Thursday. They were discussing the ways the State can spend $3 billion in federal COVID-relief funding for property tax relief.

Some experts testified, suggesting that the State buy down school taxes. Meanwhile, others recommended increasing homestead exemptions.

The lawmakers will use this information to craft legislation for the 2023 session.

Rising property values have been a hot topic in recent weeks, as the deadline to submit appraisal appeals looms next month. Most recently, Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidate Beto O'Rourke discussed the topic at a campaign stop Wednesday in Dallas.

"Corporate property owners are able to bring down their bills by billions of dollars every year," he said. "As governor, I'm going to make sure we have full sales price disclosure in the state of Texas, which means homeowners and renters will pay less going forward."

Gov. Abbott also touched on property taxes earlier this month during a campaign stop in Tyler.

"Under my taxpayer bill of rights, businesses would receive a property tax exemption on up to $100,000 of their business personal property that will lower the cost of doing business for these small businesses that will spur the economy even more, spur their capability of hiring more people, pay more people so that businesses can continue to grow," said Gov. Abbott.

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