Liberal Austin homeowners surprised to find they have to pay all the taxes they voted for

posted at 9:31 pm on June 2, 2014 by Mary Katharine Ham

NIMBY, literally.

“I’m at the breaking point,” said Gretchen Gardner, an Austin artist who bought a 1930s bungalow in the Bouldin neighborhood just south of downtown in 1991 and has watched her property tax bill soar to $8,500 this year.

“It’s not because I don’t like paying taxes,” said Gardner, who attended both meetings. “I have voted for every park, every library, all the school improvements, for light rail, for anything that will make this city better. But now I can’t afford to live here anymore. I’ll protest my appraisal notice, but that’s not enough. Someone needs to step in and address the big picture.”

I’m really just bringing this to your attention for this quote alone. Voting and paying are different endeavors entirely. Often, when one has to pay for the things one has voted to fund, that decision becomes less flippant. This is a comment, less on the specifics of Texas’ or Austin’s tax system than the blaring disconnect between liberals in Austin who are voting for higher taxes and the actual paying of the taxes. Which, as it turns out, is painful, discouraging, and can be a detriment to the fabric of the city.

The Texas Public Policy Foundation offers this on the complexity and salience of Texas property taxes:

In Texas, there are more than 3,900 localities that impose property taxes, including school districts, counties, and special districts. Texas’ property tax burden has grown from approximately 1 percent of value in the early 1980s to nearly 3 percent today.

The rising burden from property tax is worse for the housing-rich but income-poor elderly homeowners. For example, elderly homeowners tend to move more often to reduce their property tax burden, which is an additional cost of owning a home for those who can least afford to move.

Interestingly, another reason voters hate property taxes is because they are more “salient.” A salient tax means that the burden is transparent, easy to understand, and hard to avoid. If paid directly, property taxes are found to be more salient compared with sales taxes applied at checkout or income taxes withheld from a paycheck.

In 2012, the free-market think tank suggested swapping the local property tax for a sales tax:

New research suggests that if Texas eliminates its local property tax system, ranked as the 14th most oppressive in the nation, and instead replaces those lost revenues with an adjusted sales tax, then the ensuing flood of capital investment and business activity could ignite the Texas economy for years to come.

That’s right, just by changing how Texas governments collect public dollars—but not how much they spend—the Legislature can give the economy and people’s wallets a major boost.

By how much, you ask? Our estimates suggest quite a bit.

Either way, I don’t think Gretchen Gardner is ever going to make the connection between her voting pattern and her bill.


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Either way, I don’t think Gretchen Gardner is ever going to make the connection between her voting pattern and her bill.

Don’t forget, no state income taxes and she’s still complaining. I wonder who she voted for for president?

Cindy Munford on June 2, 2014 at 9:40 PM

I’m sort of surprised they just haven’t transferred all the tax burden to bullets and chick-fil-a chicken.

crrr6 on June 2, 2014 at 9:41 PM

If someone can point me to an audio recording of her liberal cognitive dissonance whining I’d really like to make it my ringtone.

SoRight on June 2, 2014 at 9:42 PM

“I have voted for every park, every library, all the school improvements, for light rail, for anything that will make this city better. But now I can’t afford to live here anymore.

And then the Nitwit will move out to a more conservative tax area, and vote for the same nonsense elsewhere.

They are like locusts.

sharrukin on June 2, 2014 at 9:42 PM

By all means keep Austin weird. Just keep it out of San Antonio

NOMOBO on June 2, 2014 at 9:42 PM

Either way, I don’t think Gretchen Gardner is ever going to make the connection between her voting pattern and her bill.

If it was switched to a sales tax, they would still vote for the increases.

cozmo on June 2, 2014 at 9:43 PM

Yep. I was elated when we actually defeated one of the proposed bonds recently, only to have the city put it right back on the ballot–and it passed.

TexasDan on June 2, 2014 at 9:43 PM

idiots.

This is really unrelated, but here in San Antonio, they just decided to remove 2 miles of bike lanes the lefty city council had decided a working class neighborhood needed. They didn’t ask the citizens, and the citizens hate the bike lanes because they make car traffic more congested. Duh. Our city council is often doing things the people don’t want them to do. It’s not like the Austin situation because our citizens were actually sensible in this case.

juliesa on June 2, 2014 at 9:43 PM

Don’t forget, no state income taxes and she’s still complaining. I wonder who she voted for for president?

Cindy Munford on June 2, 2014 at 9:40 PM

When your property tax bill is about half what you pay for your mortgage, a lot of us complain.

TexasDan on June 2, 2014 at 9:44 PM

Time once again to consider a civics competency test for voting?

paul1149 on June 2, 2014 at 9:45 PM

Yep. I live here.

Sekhmet on June 2, 2014 at 9:46 PM

“I thought that parks and other stuff were the work of faeries and forest sprites!”

Bishop on June 2, 2014 at 9:47 PM

I don’t think Gretchen Gardner is ever going to make the connection between her voting pattern and her bill.

Guaranteed.

Judge_Dredd on June 2, 2014 at 9:48 PM

“I can’t afford my voting record, but it’s not my fault.”
/Gretchen Gardner (or substitute any liberal)

Bitter Clinger on June 2, 2014 at 9:49 PM

the blaring disconnect between liberals in Austin who are voting for higher taxes and the actual paying of the taxes.

Bingo MK but it applies to most things about the progressive agenda. So many of these limousine liberals want everyone else taxed but hold on to their millions/billions (Gore, Soros, Buffett, Gates, Warren, et al). I will listen to talk about higher taxes when these hypocrites fork over their money first.

It’s up to the little people to clean up their messes, darlin’.

But it is also a reflection of the ignorance of the Libby Freordies of the world – the law of unintended consequences and the existence of a common human nature. The latter exists outside of the steely cold walls of academia and think tanks. And MSNBC.

Chuck Ef on June 2, 2014 at 9:49 PM

In CA , we voted long time ago to keep our property taxes stable as Prop 13. Now the moonbeam will go ahead and reverse all that , resulting in total chaos and instability , adding to the chaos we face already due to local ” parcel tax” increases voted by parasites who pay no taxes . How many effing chirruns and ninos are there in CA that we can’t feed and ejumatate with a few hundred billions of dollars every year ?

burrata on June 2, 2014 at 9:49 PM

TexasDan on June 2, 2014 at 9:44 PM

Did you vote for all the parks and stuff? Property taxes are a bear since for all intents and purposes, you never really own your home. I’m just saying that she (you) could have property taxes and state income taxes.

Cindy Munford on June 2, 2014 at 9:50 PM

Out canvassing for candidates this past weekend. An on-summer-vacation teacher told me her two top issues were more money for schools and lower taxes. I just looked at her in disbelief.

Fallon on June 2, 2014 at 9:50 PM

They don’t even have to raise the propery tax rate to screw you.
All they do is say your assessed value is worth more this year than it was last year.
You can protest it, but the board is composed of political appointees who are usually realtors or relatives of government officials and they always side with the tax assessor-collector’s value.
I’m all for scrapping the property tax and expanding the sales tax. Include food and OTC drugs.

TX-eye on June 2, 2014 at 9:51 PM

Most people have their taxes rolled into their mortgage. Once you pay the house off and you still have a $400/month+ tax bill/howmeowners insurance, you realize how much you really pay.

KCB on June 2, 2014 at 9:51 PM

Oh, and in our area, 70% of our real estate taxes go to the schools.

Fallon on June 2, 2014 at 9:51 PM

Wait until she sees her upcoming light bills.

SouthernGent on June 2, 2014 at 9:51 PM

Gretchen, like so many progressives, assumed that someone else would be paying for all those ‘improvements’ she was so happy to vote for over the years. She voted for them because got a kick out of being a ‘good person’ and ‘doing the right thing’.

Someone else usually means ‘anyone but me’ to progressives in real terms, but to the progressive it all to frequently also means often means ‘ that money will just magically appear’.

Bless their little hearts.

thatsafactjack on June 2, 2014 at 9:52 PM

Austin is weird cause it is a liberal bastion.

But taxes would be even higher without the Severance taxes from all our oil and gas drilling.

Drill baby drill

txdoc on June 2, 2014 at 9:53 PM

SouthernGent on June 2, 2014 at 9:51 PM

Yeah, but isn’t the air nice?

Cindy Munford on June 2, 2014 at 9:53 PM

but to the progressive it all to frequently also means often means ‘ that money will just magically appear’.

Nail on the head.

KCB on June 2, 2014 at 9:54 PM

Services provided by the govenrment cost money……. Who knew?

ThePrez on June 2, 2014 at 9:54 PM

Austin is weird cause it is a liberal bastion.

But taxes would be even higher without the Severance taxes from all our oil and gas drilling.

Drill baby drill

txdoc on June 2, 2014 at 9:53 PM

In spite of that, I love it here.

KCB on June 2, 2014 at 9:55 PM

She finally found out that voting to spend money was actually hers, a big shock for liberals.

tim c on June 2, 2014 at 9:55 PM

“I thought that parks and other stuff were the work of faeries and forest sprites!”

Bishop on June 2, 2014 at 9:47 PM

.
They are! In Jolly Olde England… since the time of Shakespeare!

ExpressoBold on June 2, 2014 at 9:56 PM

KCB on June 2, 2014 at 9:54 PM

Thank you, my friend. :)

Sorry about the typo’s and poor editing. That will teach me to post while I’m multitasking. ;)

thatsafactjack on June 2, 2014 at 9:56 PM

I don’t think Gretchen Gardner is ever going to make the connection between her voting pattern and her bill.

Liberals claim to know so much. On the other hand, they believe that taxes are always paid by someone else.

GarandFan on June 2, 2014 at 9:57 PM

Sorry about the typo’s and poor editing. That will teach me to post while I’m multitasking. ;)

thatsafactjack on June 2, 2014 at 9:56 PM

I wouldn’t presume to correct you!

KCB on June 2, 2014 at 9:57 PM

“It’s not because I don’t like paying taxes,” said Gardner, who attended both meetings. “I have voted for every park, every library, all the school improvements, for light rail, for anything that will make this city better. But now I can’t afford to live here anymore. I’ll protest my appraisal notice, but that’s not enough. Someone needs to step in and address the big picture.”

Donna, is that you?

Newtie and the Beauty on June 2, 2014 at 9:58 PM

She finally found out that voting to spend money was actually hers, a big shock for liberals.

tim c on June 2, 2014 at 9:55 PM

Wrong. Someone will convolutedly blame it on Bush & the republicans and she will swallow it hook line & sinker.

Judge_Dredd on June 2, 2014 at 9:58 PM

No whining

cmsinaz on June 2, 2014 at 9:58 PM

Out canvassing for candidates this past weekend. An on-summer-vacation teacher told me her two top issues were more money for schools and lower taxes. I just looked at her in disbelief.

Fallon on June 2, 2014 at 9:50 PM

Beautiful!

tim c on June 2, 2014 at 9:58 PM

“I have voted for every park, every library, all the school improvements, for light rail, for anything that will make this city better. But now I can’t afford to live here anymore. I’ll protest my appraisal notice, but that’s not enough. Someone needs to step in and address the big picture.”

Steps in… it’s called paying the piper, from a cautionary tale for children…

elgeneralisimo on June 2, 2014 at 9:59 PM

Weren’t those taxes supposed to be paid by “rich” people who owe their “fair share”? Perhaps that lady just found out that if you have a job or property, you are the “rich”.

Schadenfreude st its best.

Philly on June 2, 2014 at 10:00 PM

Is this the liberal mindset or what? She voted for every public service she could, and now is absolutely shocked and distressed at the bill.

flicker on June 2, 2014 at 10:02 PM

Texas’ property tax burden has grown from approximately 1 percent of value in the early 1980s to nearly 3 percent today.

3%? With compounding, that means that you get to buy your property, at full value, all over again from the state every 24 years!! Over and over and over … Pretty cool.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on June 2, 2014 at 10:03 PM

Houston resident here … if it makes you feel any better, it’s no different for your neighbors to the South.

There are some unbelievably clueless people in this world.

Blacksheep on June 2, 2014 at 10:04 PM

I guess its part of being an adult and accepting responsibility no how much it sucks.

jaywemm on June 2, 2014 at 10:05 PM

Either way, I don’t think Gretchen Gardner is ever going to make the connection between her voting pattern and her bill.

She will not… Liberalism is a mental disorder… Liberals cannot connect and see the extreme contradiction and their utter hypocrisy with the what they preach and how they want to live… They preach against human nature but yet they want to live to the fullest of their human nature…

mnjg on June 2, 2014 at 10:05 PM

Either way, I don’t think Gretchen Gardner is ever going to make the connection between her voting pattern and her bill.

Libs don’t ever make the connection. They vote a certain way because it makes them “feel good.” Then comes the bill, just like Obammy-care, and they are actually shocked, SHOCKED I SAY, to learn there has been gambling going on.
Nope, no connection to reality in the “party of science.”

DublOh7 on June 2, 2014 at 10:07 PM

Liberal Austin homeowners surprised to find they have to pay all the taxes they voted for

…SHA-zaaaaaaaaaaam!
…are they blue state transplants?

KOOLAID2 on June 2, 2014 at 10:08 PM

For liberals, it’s always, “Don’t tax you, don’t tax me, tax that man behind the tree.” They love it when they can propose all of these goodies and have someone else pay for them. It reminds me of New Hampshire, when the Massachusetts liberals moved there to get away from the taxes and then tried to put the same things into effect that caused the high taxes in Massachusetts.

There should be a law that, when liberals move to a conservative state, they have to not be allowed in the decision process for 20 years. They just don’t understand the process and don’t comprehend what’s necessary to keep taxes low. Services are one thing, excess is another.

bflat879 on June 2, 2014 at 10:08 PM

the blaring disconnect between liberals in Austin EVERYWHERE who are voting for higher taxes and the actual paying of the taxes.

Fixed for accuracy.

And then the Nitwit will move out to a more conservative tax area, and vote for the same nonsense elsewhere.

They are like locusts.

sharrukin on June 2, 2014 at 9:42 PM

An excellent analogy.*

*Technically a simile, but whatevs!

xNavigator on June 2, 2014 at 10:09 PM

“It’s not because I don’t like paying taxes,

What kind of person likes paying taxes?

mankai on June 2, 2014 at 10:10 PM

Don’t go, MKH – we need a female presence in this rowdy corner of the blogosphere!

Of course, assuming that AP is a man. Since he claims he is one…

22044 on June 2, 2014 at 10:10 PM

“It’s not because I don’t like paying taxes,” said Gardner, who attended both meetings. “I have voted for every park, every library, all the school improvements, for light rail, for anything that will make this city better. But now I can’t afford to live here anymore. I’ll protest my appraisal notice, but that’s not enough. Someone needs to step in and address the big picture.”

…sounds like a Detroit transplant…too me!

KOOLAID2 on June 2, 2014 at 10:11 PM

I wonder what Gretchen Gardner’s troll screen name is at HA – non-partisan, libfreeordie, this is your brain on Koch or Triple?

bw222 on June 2, 2014 at 10:12 PM

This is one of the many reasons I assert liberals are brain dead, selfish, idiots.

Liberalism is a mental disorder that has so many twisted aspects to it that it’s hard to capture them all in one list.

It’s also one of the reasons I say only property owners should vote, but this idiot clearly misses the point. She wants her goodies, but doesn’t want to pay for it, owns a home, yet votes for idiots like obama. What are we to do with this diseased portion of society?

Can’t ship em to mexico, they keep shipping their losers here.

Diluculo on June 2, 2014 at 10:13 PM

Good to see a post from Mary Katherine. Hadn’t been seeing many from her lately.

bluegill on June 2, 2014 at 10:13 PM

I wonder what Gretchen Gardner’s troll screen name is at HA – non-partisan, libfreeordie, this is your brain on Koch or Triple?
bw222 on June 2, 2014 at 10:12 PM

You forgot coolrepublica…

Newtie and the Beauty on June 2, 2014 at 10:13 PM

Don’t go, MKH – we need a female presence in this rowdy corner of the blogosphere!

Of course, assuming that AP is a man. Since he claims he is one…

22044 on June 2, 2014 at 10:10 PM

MKH is leaving ?

burrata on June 2, 2014 at 10:14 PM

“It’s not because I don’t like paying taxes,” said Gardner, who attended both meetings. “I have voted for every park, every library, all the school improvements, for light rail, for anything that will make this city better. But now I can’t afford to live here anymore. I’ll protest my appraisal notice, but that’s not enough. Someone needs to step in and address the big picture.”

Too dumb to breathe without assistance yet allowed to vote. She’ll move to another area and continue her idiocy there. Looters and non producers, human locusts ravaging the land providing nothing of substance. She also expects someone else to step up and fix the problems she created.

Oldnuke on June 2, 2014 at 10:14 PM

ExpressoBold on June 2, 2014 at 9:56 PM

I’ve always had a soft spot for the British method of spelling English, like “aeroplane”.

Bishop on June 2, 2014 at 10:15 PM

“It’s not because I don’t like paying taxes,” said Gardner,

…and she’s a friggin liar to boot. Another liberal trait.

I think we need to send all the libs to california, then lubricate the hell out of that big fault out there.

Diluculo on June 2, 2014 at 10:15 PM

Having high property taxes and no income tax is actually a good thing.

Make your money in Texas, either live in a hovel or own ag-property to escape the criminally confiscatory school taxes. then retire anywhere else that has lower property taxes.

It is good for Texas because the greatest medical cost burden after illegal aliens is the elderly. If Texas prices out fixed income people so that they move to high income/low property states, then their health cost problems are someone elses.

Also, what is better about the higher dependency on property taxes rather than income/sales taxes is that the carrying costs for real-estate are higher, which discourages buy and hold investors and keeps property relatively cheaper than elsewhere.

Still, the damned school systems are way over funded. Drive through Texas and in any town or small city the best buildings by far are always the school buildings. Everything else can be ramshackle or adequate, but ALL of the schools are palaces in comparison.

After that stupid $60million stadium debacle in Allen, TX, you would think that these morons would be a bit more responsible with the cash – but no, the rampant irresponsibility that goes unpunished only encourages them to buy Godzilla-tron scoreboards for the little reprobates to play under four games a year.

Reuben Hick on June 2, 2014 at 10:16 PM

Don’t go, MKH – we need a female presence in this rowdy corner of the blogosphere!

Of course, assuming that AP is a man. Since he claims he is one…

22044 on June 2, 2014 at 10:10 PM

…WTF?…did I miss something while I was gone on MKH too?…is blueballs going to twitter herself onto Dancing With the Stars out of glee?…wtf is this “Don’t go,MKH?”

KOOLAID2 on June 2, 2014 at 10:17 PM

I think we need to send all the libs to california, then lubricate the hell out of that big fault out there.

Diluculo on June 2, 2014 at 10:15 PM

I don’t know why but I just can’t stop laughing. Great turn of phrase!

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on June 2, 2014 at 10:17 PM

“It’s not because I don’t like paying taxes,” said Gardner, who attended both meetings. “I have voted for every park, every library, all the school improvements, for light rail, for anything that will make this city better. But now I can’t afford to live here anymore. I’ll protest my appraisal notice, but that’s not enough. Someone needs to step in and address the big picture.”

I am almost apoplectic with schadenfreude-laden fits of uncontrollable laughter.

Midas on June 2, 2014 at 10:17 PM

“It’s not because I don’t like paying taxes,” said Gardner, who attended both meetings. “I have voted for every park, every library, all the school improvements, for light rail, for anything that will make this city better. But now I can’t afford to live here anymore. I’ll protest my appraisal notice, but that’s not enough. Someone needs to step in and address the big picture.”

Typical liberal. “I keep on banging my thumb with a hammer, and now my thumb hurts. Wonder why?”

Absolutely clueless about cause-and-effect. Meanwhile, she still expects government to “step in” and do something, as if government is on her side.

I simply cannot abide rank stupidity ~

nordic prince on June 2, 2014 at 10:19 PM

Gretchen Gardner, here’s your sign.

forest on June 2, 2014 at 10:19 PM

I think we need to send all the libs to california, then lubricate the hell out of that big fault out there.

Diluculo on June 2, 2014 at 10:15 PM

Yep, frack it!

Oldnuke on June 2, 2014 at 10:20 PM

All of the ads for a Proposition on our ballot tomorrow assure voters that approving a $400 Million Bond will NOT increase taxes.

But was the ad does not say is that if the $400 Million Bond proposition fails, then our taxes would be REDUCED.

This is because the current “debt management policy” in my area is “to issue new general obligation bonds only as old ones are retired, keeping the property tax impact from general obligation bonds approximately the same over time.”

Alas, the “Low Information Voters” in my deep blue area always approve issuing new Bonds, and then they wonder why our taxes are among the highest in the country.

STOP VOTING FOR BONDS, PEOPLE!

wren on June 2, 2014 at 10:21 PM

It’s not just Austin. Mine have gone up by 40% over the last three years in the north DFW area.

tommytom02 on June 2, 2014 at 10:22 PM

Donna, is that you?

Newtie and the Beauty on June 2, 2014 at 9:58 PM

That was painful.

CW20 on June 2, 2014 at 10:22 PM

KOOLAID2 on June 2, 2014 at 10:11 PM

Your girl bluegill just showed up. :)

Judge_Dredd on June 2, 2014 at 10:23 PM

New research suggests that if Texas eliminates its local property tax system, ranked as the 14th most oppressive in the nation, and instead replaces those lost revenues with an adjusted sales tax, then the ensuing flood of capital investment and business activity could ignite the Texas economy for years to come.

If you’re the liberals in Austin, you’d love this tax, because Austin’s a retail-rich area — i.e., people from areas outside the city limits will come into town to help fund your liberal projects with their purchases, while the liberals won’t be going out into the outlying areas to fund the suburban/rural city and county infrastructure via property taxes (this would especially be a killer for medium and smaller-population counties with high oil and gas reserves, which get most of their ad valorem taxes off mineral valuations. Take that away and force those counties to live on a higher sales tax, when residents are going to the bigger counties for their bigger purchases, and you’re setting up an urban/rural economic divide similar to New York City-vs.-Upsstate New York or Coastal California-vs.-Inland California).

jon1979 on June 2, 2014 at 10:23 PM

That was painful.
CW20 on June 2, 2014 at 10:22 PM

I’m sorry, but that was the first thing what crossed my mind when I read this article…

Newtie and the Beauty on June 2, 2014 at 10:24 PM

Good to see a post from Mary Katherine. Hadn’t been seeing many from her lately.

bluegill on June 2, 2014 at 10:13 PM

…have you looked up sanctimonious…on your thingy…with your Versace thong sweat shorts on while wearing your see-through sunglasses…perked on your cross-your-heart boobs……………yet?

KOOLAID2 on June 2, 2014 at 10:26 PM

KOOLAID2 on June 2, 2014 at 10:26 PM

It’s a guilty pleasure of mine to watch you do that; ;)

Judge_Dredd on June 2, 2014 at 10:29 PM

They are like locusts.

sharrukin on June 2, 2014 at 9:42 PM

No, not quite. You can stomp on locusts.

climbnjump on June 2, 2014 at 10:30 PM

What’s really encouraging regarding property taxes in Texas is when you get a breakdown as to where the tax dollars go. Forty percent goes to public schools. And then it’s even more encouraging to find out that 90% of the students in multiple areas around Texas are either illegal aliens or the children of illegal aliens. Gosh. Makes me wish they’d up my property tax rates so I could pay an extra 1 or 2k per year. /s

Ruckus_Tom on June 2, 2014 at 10:32 PM

No, not quite. You can stomp on locusts.

climbnjump on June 2, 2014 at 10:30 PM

You can stomp on liberals too, but there are always more of them!

sharrukin on June 2, 2014 at 10:32 PM

Still, the damned school systems are way over funded. Drive through Texas and in any town or small city the best buildings by far are always the school buildings. Everything else can be ramshackle or adequate, but ALL of the schools are palaces in comparison.

Have you been to Corpus Christi lately?

pullingmyhairout on June 2, 2014 at 10:32 PM

Mmm, whaddaya wanna bet Missy SadFace Austin Homeowner purchased more house than she can afford, usually pays the minimums on her 6 credit cards and doesn’t balance her checkbook (notably by using the close-your-eyes-and-WISH accounting method).

If you are generally fiscally responsible in your life (i.e. a frugal tightwad who documents where your pennies go and makes sure there are enough pennies to pay for everything) then how likely is it you will be blindsided by these totally foreseeable consequences?

Some people have been known to carry an umbrella when rain is predicted, Missy…

But yeah. Big picture thinking is what’s needed here./.

Dolce Far Niente on June 2, 2014 at 10:36 PM

I have tears running down my cheeks over this . . . . . seriously, I’m laughing that hard.

listens2glenn on June 2, 2014 at 10:37 PM

The “not a tax increase” line in bond issues is a flat out lie. Let’s say a bond passes to put 0.15% tax on the value of property. They look at that year’s tax assessment, apply the tax, and the dollar value of the tax is then fixed for the life of the bond. However, when the bond expires, and they want to pass a new one, they sell it as the same 0.15% and thus not a tax increase. But, the value of your property changed from 130,000, where the original assessment was calculated, to 195,000 over the time since the old bond passed. Boom…tax hike. Sneaky little turds.

Texas’ problem is that the housing market has really recovered. The vacant homes got scooped up quick by investors and handy home buyers, and when the economy stabilized, our market recovered. My home is worth more now than it was before the bust, thus my aforementioned property tax increase.

And after all that liberals still can’t do math.

tommytom02 on June 2, 2014 at 10:38 PM

Judge_Dredd on June 2, 2014 at 10:29 PM

…can you imagine someone actually hitting that?…we could send it to sex-offenders for conjugal visits through out the federal penitentiary system…and if it talked during the visit…it would cause immediate profuse castration!…and it wouldn’t be ‘chemical’…..what a reformation…no legislation would be needed!

KOOLAID2 on June 2, 2014 at 10:41 PM

I’ll bet Gretchen went to college.

TimBuk3 on June 2, 2014 at 10:42 PM

MKH is leaving ?

burrata on June 2, 2014 at 10:14 PM

…WTF?…did I miss something while I was gone on MKH too?…is blueballs going to twitter herself onto Dancing With the Stars out of glee?…wtf is this “Don’t go,MKH?”

KOOLAID2 on June 2, 2014 at 10:17 PM

Preemptive – perhaps paranoid request.

Hilarious, KA2!

22044 on June 2, 2014 at 10:43 PM

KOOLAID2 on June 2, 2014 at 10:41 PM

Keep holding its fins to the fire! :)

Judge_Dredd on June 2, 2014 at 10:45 PM

Ya know, she’d have a lot more money to pay those higher taxes if Austin would only raise its minimum wage to $15 an hour…

*ducks*

/sarc

JimLennon on June 2, 2014 at 10:46 PM

I moved from TExas for retirement reasons, but I’ve noted how sky high those property taxes are. My wife and I could never afford to move back. We could never pay a 3% rate, or $18,000, for a $600,000 house. You are absolutely screwed if you live in Texas and don’t have a high income. And I say this as someone who loves Texas and has never voted for a Democrat.

BillCarson on June 2, 2014 at 10:46 PM

BillCarson on June 2, 2014 at 10:46 PM

…too many states like that!…they do that in Michigan…it’s a shame BC…my brother is a pilot there…and he will retire out of state too…I feel for you guys…whatever happened to ‘roots’?

KOOLAID2 on June 2, 2014 at 10:58 PM

3%? With compounding, that means that you get to buy your property, at full value, all over again from the state every 24 years!! Over and over and over…
ThePrimordialOrderedPair on June 2, 2014 at 10:03 PM

If only it were so simple. You are not paying the rate on the purchase price. You are paying the rate on the “assessed market value.” I purchased my house in 2005. It has doubled in value, even though I have fought the assessment every year. Therefore, I am now paying 3% of 200%, or 6%, meaning that I get to purchase my house every 16 years.

But if you want to do the math, and assume my assessed value continues to double every 10 years, and that my tax rate triples every 20 years, then this means that in another 20 years, I’ll be paying 70% of my purchase price in 20 years… every year.

Since reality is somewhere in the middle, I can see my property tax being 25% annually in 20 years. How many of you out there can pay 25% of your home’s purchase price every year, and still make your other bills and (maybe) mortgage?

Still, with Quantitative Easing XII still to come, it’s quite possible that 25% of the purchase price of my home could very well be the same as the price of a loaf of bread in 20 years.

Wino on June 2, 2014 at 11:07 PM

Dang it, Texas, I knew there was a catch.

….turns left at Interstate 25, heads to Wyoming.

MichaelGabriel on June 2, 2014 at 11:10 PM

Gretchen’s at the breaking point because she hasn’t planned ahead. I’m sure she bought a cute little bungalow just south of the river, kicked back, and watched Austin grow. More grow, more demand… higher values, higher tax.
I took what I had and bought what I needed with more backyard than I can keep up with. And a forty foot pecan tree. My property taxes are less than a grand a year and frozen at age 65. And the weird parts of Austin are less than an hour south. They’re welcome to it.

And there’s not a whole lot of bleeding hearts around this neighborhood.

Willys on June 2, 2014 at 11:15 PM

We try to keep them contained within Austin but they keep escaping to Houston, Dallas and San Antonio. I live in Grand Prairie and pay about $4K in taxes because I don’t vote for every stupid liberal tax hike that these morons try to push through. Since this Austinite is an “artist” I suspect she had better stay put. Texans don’t buy “pi-s Christ” kinds of “art”. I suggest California for two reasons one because she will feel right at home and two she won’t complain about Texas property taxes after she finds out how much Cali residents pay for their little liberal utopia.

neyney on June 2, 2014 at 11:19 PM

When your property tax bill is about half what you pay for your mortgage, a lot of us complain.
TexasDan on June 2, 2014 at 9:44 PM

My NY property tax bill is the same as that artist/rocket scientist’s, but home prices are 4 times Austin’s, and we’ve got state taxes to boot.

So stop sniveling.

Maddie on June 2, 2014 at 11:20 PM

Good to see Texas Public Policy Foundation quoted here. They are the preeminent conservative state based think tank in the nation and they lay a lot of the intellectual groundwork that helps guide conservative legislators in the state legislature.

Another good reason to change from property to sales tax is that is is more…what’s the word the left likes to use…socially just. Everyone pays, not just homeowners. Oh, sure, renters may pay some property taxes as a sort of pass through tax bundled in their rent…but it’s not a salient tax. As far as they’re concerned they’re not paying property taxes.

Texas Zombie on June 2, 2014 at 11:26 PM

I know of a small town in Australia where local residents agitated for ages to get the speed limit (60kmh) on the main street reduced because they thought it was encouraging ‘hoons’ (Australian for speeding young drivers). The local police sergeant took it to the government and the govt agreed to drop the speed limit on the street. The signs were changed to 40kmh and the cops followed up with frequent radar traps. Six months later, angry residents held a town meeting to complain about the new speed limit. Said one old dude who’d voted to drop the speed limit previously: “It was mean to catch hoons but it’s only catching people like me!”

The Thin Man Returns on June 2, 2014 at 11:27 PM

“meant to” D’oh!

The Thin Man Returns on June 2, 2014 at 11:29 PM

Gretchen’s affliction

StubbornGreenBurros on June 2, 2014 at 11:34 PM

Waaaaay back when in 2008 I moved to Grand Junction, CO for a short time. One day, while waiting for the real estate office to open so I could see what was available to rent, I stopped by some Mom and Pop bagel/coffee shop thingee.

I noticed all sorts of pro-Obama stuff in the windows and campaign literature sprinkled all over. A real Kool-Aid drinker. Off in the corner a middle-aged woman, who I took to be at least the part-owner, was complaining to another woman about taxes, the cost of doing business, etc….

Normally, I would have empathy for a small business owner, but I wonder how much she’s liking the whole Hopenchange thing now? Dumbasses come in all shapes, sizes, ages, and income strata. I hope she went belly up.

307wolverine on June 2, 2014 at 11:49 PM

Ok, I’m not looking for any sympathy, but this Rick Perry Texas Miracle thing is as transparent as a video being responsible for Benghazi tragedy. We may not have an income tax, but our property taxes are absolutely insane and Rick’s Robin Hood legislation is as socialist as anything that existed before Obamacare. In my district more than 50% of our property taxes receipts are sent out of the district. They are greedily creating assessments that are in fact forcing people out of their homes because their property tax assessments are beyond ludicrous. At this point I would gladly approve a more moderate assessment structure with an income tax. I have paid more than $750k in property taxes over the last 15 years for a house that cost me $1.3 million. Rick Perry is a slick Aggie fraud who has spun this “no income tax” scam unconscionably. If the state really was performing as well as advertised, property tax reform would be high on his list and Robin Hood would be repealed immediately.

Texlib on June 3, 2014 at 12:00 AM

Either way, I don’t think Gretchen Gardner is ever going to make the connection between her voting pattern and her bill.

Nope. Folks like Gretchen are lousy Dot-Connectors.

Lamont Cranston on June 3, 2014 at 12:06 AM

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