Bexar County Precinct 4 Commissioner Tommy Calvert posted anti-taxpayer talking points Tuesday in strong opposition to taxpayers having a voice in their property taxes.

A concerned taxpayer sent Texas Scorecard a copy of a post on social media from Calvert to his constituents arguing against House Bill 2 and Senate Bill 2, both of which would put in place a trigger for an automatic vote by the people to approve any property tax hikes over a lowered rollback rate of 2.5 percent. The trigger would apply to county, city, and school district property taxes. All new growth would be excluded from the rollback calculations, and local taxing entities who take in less than $15 million in tax revenues are exempt.

In his post, Calvert erroneously called the trigger a “revenue cap” and said that it is a “bad policy” that wouldn’t address “the real problems in the property tax system like unfunded mandates and school finance” and “takes away local decision-making authority from communities.”

Calvert’s series of talking points largely mirror ones distributed by the tax-funded local-government lobby, the Texas Municipal League:

  • “H.B. 2/S.B. 2 is an assault on public safety.”
  • “H.B. 2/S.B. 2 will damage economic growth.”
  • “H.B. 2/S.B. 2 threatens highway construction.”
  • [We should] “[p]rovide adequate funding for Texas Schools.”

Calvert’s post appears to rally voters in his area to speak against HB 2 at the Texas House Committee hearing on the bill today.

Taxpayers should be wary of any arguments from local officials, and those who benefit from higher property taxes, who are against them having a voice in their own property tax bills.

Robert Montoya

Born in Houston, Robert Montoya is an investigative reporter for Texas Scorecard. He believes transparency is the obligation of government.