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Texas House Democrats announce tax relief proposal with increases for school funding and teacher pay

Teach the Vote
Teach the Vote

School Finance Texas Legislature Educator Compensation | Benefits

Date Posted: 7/06/2023 | Author: Tricia Cave

House Democratic Reps. John Bryant (D–Dallas), Vikki Goodwin (D–Austin), Mihaela Plesa (D–Dallas), Ana-Maria Ramos (D–Richardson), Donna Howard (D–Austin), and Christina Morales (D–Houston) announced a new property tax relief plan  that they said would deliver relief to homeowners and renters while also increasing public school funding and delivering teacher pay raises. The announcement took place during a press conference Thursday, July 6, 2023.

House Bill (HB) 62, authored by Bryant, would raise the Basic Allotment (BA) by $1,000, as has been requested by school districts and advocates all over Texas to keep up with rising inflation. It would also create automatic adjustments to the BA every two years based on the Consumer Price Index. Following the passage of the major school finance overhaul in HB 3 in 2019, any increase in the BA automatically triggers a teacher pay raise. These pay raise amounts would be determined at a district level. HB 62 would give homeowners a homestead exemption of $100,000 or 25% of appraised value. The bill would help renters by offering a rebate to those whose landlords submit a document showing rent was paid for a full year. 

Bryant stated that the Democrats’ plan for pay raises would be more equitable than the one already proposed in the Senate. He pointed out that under the Senate plan, which proposes $2,000 base stipends with an additional $4,000 for teachers in districts with less than 20,000 students, there would be some schools across the highway from each other where teachers would get different stipend amounts.

Rep. Howard said she felt the legislature was holding school funding hostage and that this plan was the best she had seen. She added that the plan being championed by Gov. Greg Abbott (R) to eliminate the M&O tax rate altogether is unrealistic because the state does not have funding to replace it. Howard said she was concerned we could see cuts to public education similar to what we saw in 2011.

The House and Senate have been at odds over property tax relief for much of the Spring, with the Senate favoring homestead exemptions, while the House and Abbott favor tax compression. Property tax relief is the sole purpose of the second special session currently underway, after legislators failed to reach an agreement during a first special session. House Speaker Dade Phelan (R–Beaumont) and Lt. Governor Dan Patrick (R) met Wednesday, but no deal has been announced to date. 




Teachers are professionals and need to be paid as such. Vouchers, continued low pay, testing pressure, and low/no accountability for students is driving good teachers, ALL teachers away. Please listen to us!

Juana Liriano



If the plan is for the basic rate to be $1000 dollar increase then Texas will lose thousands of teachers next year. Most small school districts pay off of the basic rate. That means the majority of Texas students are being taught by the lowest paid teachers. 2024 will see an exodus because someone is worried about what''s across the street?? What about all the teachers actually working at base for 5 to 18 years? We can no longer afford to teach nor does our environment provide opportunities for second jobs because we''re rural schools. Your teachers should earn a basic pay that''s livable and if you haven''t noticed, living has raised by 25-35% lately. Additionally, the increase in students because they''re coming across the border is increasing the number of teachers in the schools. Dual language, certified teachers are not going to work for pennies when they can double their salary in other occupations. Stick to the $2000/$4000 plan and you''ll save some but by next year...even that won''t be enough when "down the road" in the same county teachers start $5-10k more than small town teachers get in base.

Caryl Olson

So true. I taught for 33 years and am currently experiencing that problem.

Irma escobedo

What the legislature needs to do is allow for social security to be deducted for teachers if I retire after 31 years of teaching k will not be able to sustain myself.

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