TYLER, Texas (KETK) – Property taxes are a continuing concern for East Texas residents.
Matt Schaefer spoke to constituents at Rudy’s BBQ Monday night addressing the rate increase in their own community.
“They’re getting high, and people are concerned about that,” Schaefer said.
Across the state, lawmakers are weighing in on the issue.
During KETK’s Town Hall, Governor Abbott said property taxes are a problem across the board.
“I feel your pain, I want you to know we’ve heard similar stories from people around the state of texas, that property taxes are making it unaffordable,” Gov. Abbott said.
Texas doesn’t have an income tax, which is part of the reason our state ranks sixth in the nation when it comes to the high cost of property taxes.
“Your elected county commissioner, your elected city council, those are the ones that determine how much taxes you pay,” Schaefer said.
In July, Smith County Commissioners considered raising the tax rate from $0.337 cents to $0.345 cents.
“I think it’s incumbent upon every citizen to understand why that tax increase is taking place and whether they believe it’s justified,” Schaefer said.
One East Texas resident took upon himself to ask Governor Abbott what was being done about lowering the rates.
“My taxes are very important to me, paying them. This last legislation what did you and the other lawmakers do to lower our property taxes?” Eldin McCarley, Smith Co. resident said.
Along with other residents, McCarley worries what this could mean for the future.
“A lot of people own their home, we’re not paying mortgage payments, but yet you never get out of debt, you always got that tax bill,” McCarley said.
On Tuesday, the commissioner’s court plans on discussing the property tax increase with the goal of raising more revenue than previous years.