Earlier this week, we wrote about the great work that Tarrant County commissioners had accomplished through their FY ’24 budget framework (which cut spending, kept the tax rate to a minimum, and included a homestead exemption). And now, it appears more North Texas local governments are prepared to act in ways that benefit taxpayers.

The cities of Southlake and Keller both recently announced exciting new involving the no-new-revenue (NNR) tax rate. For those not familiar with the NNR, it may be thought of as:

“‘the tax rate that, if adopted, would produce the same amount of taxes if applied to the same properties from one year to the next.’ By holding tax revenue constant, officials give property owners a chance to breathe a sigh of relief and either maintain their prior year’s tax burden or see it minimally reduced.”

Now, in both instances, the mayors of those communities revealed that they had either adopted or were in the process of adopting a tax rate lower than the NNR. For taxpayers, that is a huge win that will not only preserve the family budget but provide actual tax relief since the government is, in theory, taking in less property tax revenue than the prior year.

For Southlake, being at or below the NNR tax rate is nothing new (even if it is impressive). The city has long prided itself on maintaining a relatively low city tax burden, as evidenced by the fact that, if adopted, the 2024 NNR tax rate will mark the sixth year in a row that it has been in effect.

In Keller, a similar story in unfolding, with the mayor touting the NNR rate adoption and maintenance of the homestead exemption as “the largest tax relief effort in Keller history.” And just how low is the tax rate? Well, according to the newly adopted budget: “The proposed tax rate is the lowest since at least 1994-95, is a decreased of over 10% from FY 2022-23, and marks the sixth consecutive year that Keller has set a tax rate at or below the no-new-revenue rate.

The budgets of these two cities show, without a doubt, that local officials can control their appetite for tax dollars, if they want to. It’s just a matter of finding the political will to do so.

Examples like these quite frankly ought to make the rest of Texas jealous and, hopefully, spur other cities and counties into action. Otherwise, they might soon lose their residents to other conservative cities that treat their taxpayers well.

Whatever the case, some Texas taxpayers keep winning!