TABOR [Tax Payer Bill of Rights]
Houston calls it the “revenue cap” but throughout the US it is known as TABOR.
“Houstonians will see their first property tax rate cut in five years as the city runs up against TABOR imposed by voters a decade ago. The modest rollback works out to$12.27 a year for the owner of a $200,000 house with a standard homestead exemption.” [roughly $50mm total] Houston Chronicle – City rev cap to force modest tax rate cut
“Proponents argue that TABOR’s population-plus-inflation formula allows states to maintain public services while keeping spending under control. In reality, however, the formula does not keep pace with the normal growth in the cost of maintaining services, let alone the need to make new investments or improvements. Inevitably, TABOR forces large, annual cuts to services that families and businesses rely on and that support state economic prosperity, as Colorado’s experience shows.
Despite its broad coverage of prices, the CPI-U used in the TABOR formula does not track the cost of many factors that affect a person’s well-being – for example, crime, traffic, pollution, the prevalence of disease, the quality of education, and civil liberties. Cost-of-living measures rarely include such factors because few market prices or consumer expenditures are associated with them, making it essentially impossible to define and measure changes in their price or value.
Amend the Texas constitution to let municipalities amend their charters more than once every two years