The fiscal year 2020-21 tax rate is $0.487314 per $100 valuation. The council voted 6-1 with Council Member Trish Hanks opposed to ratify the adoption of the tax rate.
On Sept. 14, the council voted 4-3 for a tax rate of $0.497314 per $100 valuation, which is a drop compared to the FY 2019-20 tax rate of $0.521439. The vote failed because it did not have a supermajority affirmative vote.
The proposed rate was based on the no-new-revenue rate of $0.487314—which is what the rate would be for Friendswood to collect no new property tax revenue in FY 2020-21 compared to FY 2019-20—plus $0.01 in debt service toward drainage and other bonds voters approved.
Council Member John Scott on Sept. 14 most vocally opposed the $0.497314 tax rate, saying the city has access to extra revenue that could lower it further. Scott said increasing property values means residents will be paying more in property taxes in FY 2020-21 during a pandemic compared to FY 2019-20 and pushed for the tax rate to be lowered even more.
Because the council failed to approve the proposed tax rate and did not hold a special meeting before Sept. 30, under state law, the FY 2020-21 tax rate defaulted to the no-new-revenue rate of $0.487314. Regardless, the council was required to ratify the adoption of the tax rate, which it did Oct. 1.
The property tax rate is the lowest it has ever been in Friendswood, Public Information Officer Jeff Newpher said.