"But the former governors who were before me laid burdens on the people, and took from them bread and wine, besides forty shekels of silver. Yes, even their servants bore rule over the people, but I did not do so, because of the fear of God."
This is a fantastic idea:
As I hope you are aware, I have attended several hearings of the Senate Select Committee on Property Tax Reform & Relief. At each hearing I heard homeowner after homeowner testify on how the rapid growth in their local property taxes has burdened their family and, in some cases, threatens to drive them out of their home. Texans are demanding property tax relief and appraisal reform.Read the whole thing here.
One of the major drivers of the growing property tax burden is the increase in appraisal values. Typically, your county's Appraisal District selects the Chief Appraiser and tasks him or her with hiring all personnel necessary to carry out the district's operations. Meanwhile, members of the Appraisal Review Boards are appointed with the responsibility of hearing all the protests of the assessed values on properties. Certainly, the Cheif Appraiser and members of the Appraisal Review Board strive to do a great job for their communities in these roles; however, the current system does not allow for direct accountability to the local taxpayers.
To increase taxpayer representation in the appraisal process, I am planning to propose legislation next session which will provide for the election of the Cheif [sic] Appraiser in a partisan November election. The elected appraiser will then be responsible for directly appointing the members of his or her county's respective Appraisal Review Board. Under this new structure, taxpayers will have an elected official to hold accountable at the ballot box for their appraisals and for the review board's management and attitudes towards them, and the outcomes of their protests.