The Woodlands, January 30 – Precinct 3 County Commissioner James Noack has asked Montgomery County Tax Assessor-Collector Tammy McRae to perform an analysis of the impact of a general homestead exemption on both the taxpayers of Montgomery County and the County budget. Noack has submitted to the County Judge’s Office an agenda item for the February 14, 2017, Commissioners Court meeting “to consider, discuss and take appropriate action seeking assistance from Tax Assessor Collector to perform a revenue impact study on a general homestead exemption of up to 20 percent as allowed by Texas law.”
“Currently Montgomery County only offers $35,000 in exemptions to those over the age of 65,” said Commissioner Noack. “I am seeking a potential homestead exemption for all property owners.” Noack plans also to ask the Commissioners Court to approve a resolution which he will request the County Attorney to draft to support legislative efforts to bring about property tax reform in Montgomery County.
Noack added, “I believe any time we can put money back into the pockets of Montgomery County taxpayers, it is our responsibility to do so. Last year I upped the ante with the 1 cent tax rate reduction and I plan to follow that up with significant tax relief in 2018 with either a local homestead exemption, legislative relief, or a combination of both.”
McRae responded, “I fully support efforts to lower the property tax burden on Montgomery County taxpayers, ” McRae said. “I look forward to sharing my findings with the Commissioners Court.”
A Citizens Budget Committee is working on a detailed budget proposal which they intend to present to the Commissioners Court during the first week of June, 2017, which would call for a $100 million spending reduction, with additional expenditures of $40 million for law enforcement, a net $60 million reduction of the $381 million County budget for the current Fiscal Year.
Over the past weekend, The Golden Hammer ran a story (“Brief Survey of Homestead Exemptions May Disappoint Taxpayers” (January 27, 2017, by A.D. Heath)) discussing the failure of Montgomery County to provide homestead exemptions which is particularly egregious in comparison to similarly sized counties and in comparison to counties with a similar growth rate across Texas. After The Golden Hammer verified certain statistics and in accordance with Noack’s longstanding efforts and research to reduce the burden on County taxpayers, Noack initiated the actions this morning.
Kelli Cook, a resident of Commissioners Precinct 1, told The Golden Hammer, “I am pleased that Commissioner Noack is responding to pressure to initiate much needed tax relief with the homestead exemption proposal. I am concerned that not all commissioners will choose to protect the tax payers and may vote against it or want a smaller cut. I urge everyone to contact the commissioners and demand they vote for a full and immediate homestead exemption.”