LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) -Currently, if a Texas City increases property tax collections by more than 8 percent over the previous year, voters can petition for an election to roll back the increase.
Now with a new bill being introduced that will replace the eight percent to 2.5 percent, city officials are concerned.
"Our property tax is lower today than it was in 2010 and the issue that I have as a city manager and concerned with is if I have any type of financial crisis or any type of natural disaster crisis and if that lasts over a period of time how do I overcome that?” said Keith Wright, Lufkin City Manager.
Other concerns Wright has include cities not being able to meet local needs, no meaningful tax relief, and lack school funding .
"So right now they are talking about 2.5 percent, putting a cap on 2.5 percent with an automatic rollback election if we go over that. 2.5 percent only raises about $269,000 in revenue for the city of Lufkin; that would not pay for three to four policeman or fireman,” said Wight.
Angelina County Tax assessor Billie Page suggests that if more options were available to provide them with more funding, it would help alleviate some of the concerns.
"Because everything that’s done in this tax office is governed by the state. The state says you’re going to do this, and that’s why we do what we do. It’s nothing you can put a personal spin on,” said Page.
As for Wright, he says his goal is to make sure that the citizens of his community are treated fairly and provided with opportunities to help them.
"We provide fire, we provide police, we provide good streets, we provide for infrastructure, and the way we do that is through different types of revenue resources, and one of those being property taxes. And if we have to cut services it will not be the state legislators dealing with the issues, it will be us,” said Wright.
Lufkin City Council approved a resolution to oppose the proposed statewide revenue cap to state legislation.