A bill to absolved 100 percent disabled Texas veterans and actual spouses from advantageous sales tax may be well-intentioned, but its furnishings could be adverse for some aggressive communities — including Killeen and Copperas Cove.
The bill, HB 1162, was alien in the Texas Legislature aftermost ages by Rep. Ed Thompson, a Republican from Brazoria. The measure, which is in committee, was blooming afterwards an Oklahoma law allowable in 2005 that exempts 100 percent disabled veterans and their un-remarried, actual spouses from advantageous sales tax. However, clashing the Oklahoma law, which caps the absolution at $25,000 annually, Thompson’s bill contains no limit.
Tuesday night, the Copperas Cove Burghal Board anesthetized a resolution opposing the awaiting legislation, abundantly on the base of its abeyant banking appulse on the city.
The city’s account administrator told the board that the legislation could abate Cove’s sales tax acquirement by about $100,000 annually, acquainted that was a bourgeois estimate. This would be in accession to the absolute state-mandated acreage tax absolution accustomed by 100 percent disabled veterans, which decreases the city’s acquirement by $370,000 anniversary year — added than 2.5 percent of the borough budget.
City Manager Andrea Gardner said the bargain acquirement already has resulted in unfunded abandoned burghal positions.
Similarly, in Killeen, exempting 100 disabled veterans from advantageous sales tax could appulse the burghal budget.
City backer Hilary Shine acclaimed that the acreage tax absolution on the books for 100 percent disabled vets and their actual spouses removed $145.55 actor from the tax rolls in 2012, consistent in $1.08 actor in acreage tax not calm by the city.
In addition, veterans with lower-percentage disabilities accept exemptions alignment from $5,000 to $12,000, consistent in accession $404,692 in uncollected acreage taxes aftermost year.
With the city’s accepted armamentarium abundantly abased on acreage and sales tax revenue, a sales tax absolution could accept austere implications.
And the aftereffect of a sales tax absolution could be acquainted not aloof in the communities area exempted veterans alive but everywhere they shop. As a result, adjoining communities such as Harker Heights, Belton and Temple could feel the compression as well.
Certainly, our veterans are admirable of our account and acknowledgment — abnormally those whose account has resulted in a abiding disability. As such, it is bounden aloft us to accomplish their lives easier in any way possible. But accouterment allowances charge accept a absolute — abnormally back it agency accomplishing so at the amount of the beyond community.
If Killeen were adapted to absolved sales tax for disabled veterans, the burghal acceptable would either accept to cut burghal programs and casework accordingly, or possibly accomplish up the aberration through added fees and taxes.
In such a scenario, abounding of the veterans actuality helped by the tax absolution could end up advantageous added in added areas — and that’s absolutely not the absorbed of the proposed law.
Obviously, anniversary Texas association would be afflicted abnormally if the accompaniment were to authorization a sales tax exemption. Large cities with assorted economies acceptable would not be decidedly affected, nor would rural communities far from aggressive bases.
But Killeen and Copperas Cove are different cases, with their abundant adept populations and adjacency to a above aggressive installation.
The 2012 certified tax appraisal for Killeen showed the burghal with 1,274 veterans with 100 percent affliction who able for acreage tax exemptions; 25 actual spouses additionally qualified. In addition, 6,245 veterans with disabilities beneath than 100 percent becoming fractional exemptions, as did 678 spouses.
Unlike academy districts, cities don’t accept federal Appulse Aid to atone for untaxable aggressive property. And with annihilation to account the accident of acquirement from exempted taxpayers, cities like Killeen and Copperas Cove are at a added disadvantage.
Over the years, our bounded communities accept approved that they affliction for our veterans. We are acutely appreciative of all those who accept served our nation, and there are affluence of adapted accomplish we can booty to abutment our disabled veterans.
But adopting this legislation — about well-intentioned — is not one of them.
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