When it comes to how to use the state’s $27 billion surplus, a new poll shows Texas Republicans want to see it used to reduce property taxes.
A new poll from Defend Texas Liberty of Republican voters in Texas shows 58 percent want to see the surplus used for property tax reduction. Twenty-nine percent want to see the surplus used for infrastructure, while 13 percent were undecided.
The poll comes amid what appears to be a split between Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, and House Speaker Dade Phelan on what to do with the surplus funds.
Gov. Greg Abbott has stated that “at least half” of the money should go toward property tax relief, committing to put the state on a path toward the elimination of school property taxes.
Last week, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said taxpayers deserve a “robust property tax cut,” including an increase in the homestead exemption, a move he estimated could cost $4-5 billion over the course of 2024-2025. He had previously stated that at least half of the surplus money would go to property tax relief, though newer spending proposals appear to potentially decrease that number.
Meanwhile, House Speaker Dade Phelan has been short on specifics on what to do with the money, but he has downplayed the potential for property tax relief and indicated that the state needs to spend more on infrastructure.
“I know there’s a lot of politicians who are going around saying we need to go around spending half this revenue [on property tax relief],” Phelan told attendees of a recent meeting of the Transportation Advocacy Group in Houston. “I’ve got elected officials who haven’t taken the oath of office saying we need to spend all the revenue on property tax relief. Let me just remind you, none of this money came from property taxes. It all came from sales tax.”
“No one is even considering how much more expensive it’s going to be to run government next cycle,” he added.
The entire poll may be viewed here.