San Marcos City Council unanimously approves creation of residential homestead property tax exemptions

The new property tax exemptions would lower a homeowner's tax bill by about $90. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
The new property tax exemptions would lower a homeowner's tax bill by about $90. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)

The new property tax exemptions would lower a homeowner's tax bill by about $90. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)

San Marcos City Council voted unanimously Jan. 18 to create a residential homestead property tax exemption of $15,000 and to raise the senior citizen and disabled persons exemption from $25,000 to $35,000.

The ordinance passed on first reading and will have to be passed again at a later council meeting in order to become law.

Under the ordinance, a senior citizen or disabled citizen could apply both the new $35,000 increase and the new $15,000 exemption available to all San Marcos residents for a total exemption of $50,000 off the property valuation of their home.

“Our tax base is increasing, and so this is a reason why I'm supporting this, to give relief to to a small extent, to our residents, our taxpayers, but hopefully it's not going to cost everyone else. That's my goal,” Mayor Jane Hughson said.

Other council members wanted to make sure once it is law the city effectively communicates to the city’s residents how to access the exemption.


“I think it'll be really beneficial but necessary for us to make sure that there's marketing and education and resources to help people qualify for these things and understand that the savings are available to them,” Council Member Maxfield Baker said.

Marie Kalka, finance director for the city, indicated that she would confirm with Hays County whether the exemptions would be applied automatically or if residents would have to fill out additional forms.

Kalka said the homestead exemption would provide an average of $90 a year in estimated savings for each household and an additional $60 for the senior and disabled exemption increase based on the city’s current tax rate.

The total reduction in revenue to the city is estimated to be $590,940 according to city documents.
By Eric Weilbacher

Editor, New Braunfels and San Marcos/Buda/Kyle

Eric joinedCommunity Impact Newspaper as an editor in July 2021, returning to journalism after several years in the New Braunfels business community. Prior to CI, Eric freelanced for multiple publications and was a reporter for the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung. He brings a passion for accurate, compelling story telling and human interest to his work.