PLANO, TX – Marine Intelligence Officer and State Senator Van Taylor today released the following statement in response to FBI Chief James Comey's comments regarding Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s handling of classified information.
"In the Marine Corps, Secretary Clinton’s behavior would lead to removal of security clearance and severe reprimand up to court martial. As a Marine Intelligence Officer, I handled Top Secret material regularly. Secretary Clinton violated basic procedures and then lied about it,” stated Taylor. “I am appalled at her lack of respect for our nation’s most valuable secrets and her callousness toward the people who risked their lives to get that information."Read more
Commentary by Senator Van Taylor
Published in the Texas Scorecard, June 2, 2016
In the face of skyrocketing appraisals and a crushing property tax burden levied on working families and retired Texans on a fixed income, the Texas Senate will lead the fight for meaningful property tax reform with the leadership of Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick. Last Fall, Lieutenant Governor Patrick appointed a Select Committee on Property Tax Relief and Reform. As a member of that Committee, I traveled the state listening to the people and I want to share some observations from the series of hearings in The Valley, San Antonio, Lubbock, Dallas-Fort Worth, and Houston.
First, let me state the obvious: without a vigilant eye defending the taxpayers, government will naturally consume everything in its path. In 1900, government was approximately 8% of gross domestic product (GDP), now it is around 42%. We must stop this inexorable rise. Currently, the property tax system in Texas embodies the most glaring evidence of this problem. According to data from the Texas Comptroller, between 2005 and 2014 property taxes grew approximately 2.5 times faster than the median household income. That growth is simply unsustainable. Worse, this growth prices people out of their home.
- VAN TAYLOR
I want to personally thank everyone who came out to yesterday’s property tax relief and reform committee hearing in Arlington. I know the drive was far and the wait was long, but your testimony is at the heart of the charge for this committee. I also very much appreciate all the feedback from those who were unable to attend. I shared your comments with the committee and read from several letters at the hearing.
This committee is not about local governments, it is not about complex tax formula calculations, appraisal districts or even ideology. This committee and the hearings we are holding across the state are about the people and what type of state we want to leave to the next generation. Yesterday’s hearing lasted nearly 12 hours and over 400 people attended. At the end of the day not a single citizen taxpayer testified that they were satisfied with the status quo. Not a single citizen said they were comfortable with the rate in which their property taxes were escalating. And not a single citizen felt the cards are fairly stacked so that the people can affect change in their community.
Meanwhile, taxpayers were lectured by government officials, taxpayer-funded lobbyists, and high-powered government consultants on why they need more and more of the peoples money. And on why government needs unhinged freedom to grow as the political elite see fit.
The contrast was staggering!
On no other issue have I seen such a divide between the will of the people and government interests. This divide has exposed a system where government growth is set to autopilot without a mechanism for the people to check its power. Such a system, which seeks to silence the people, belittles the principles of our Republic and is in dire need of reform.
The more government takes the less freedom people have to choose how they want to live their lives. Property taxes are even more personal. Our homes are more than just an asset for the government to tax. In our homes we: enjoy family dinners, raise our children, gather to celebrate life’s milestones, build tree houses, set up lemonade stands, etch yearly height measurements into door frames, hang pictures, and make many other memories.
When I hear the fear in people’s voice, worried they are going to have to sell their home because the tax burden has grown too immense, my blood boils. Government exists to secure the rights of the people. The stories shared by homeowners in our district, and across the state, run contrary to this directive.
The Senate is listening and committed to meaningful reforms that empower the people and provide much needed tax relief. However, the big-government forces have drawn a line in the sand, vowed not to comprise and fight us at every turn. That is why your feedback is so important. As I have said before, the only way to defeat the determined big-government forces is for the voice of the people to echo even louder.
Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick offers public testimony at the Senate Committee on Property Tax Relief and Reform Hearing in Arlington, April 27, 2016.
Video Credit: WFAA ABC 8; 5:24 PM CDT April 27, 2016: http://www.wfaa.com/news/raw-lt-gov-patrick-rips-judge-on-tax-increases/156444102
PLANO, TX – State Senator Van Taylor is encouraging his constituents to participate in the upcoming Senate Property Tax Reform and Relief Committee hearing on Wednesday, April 27 at the University of Texas at Arlington. The hearing will start at 8:00am with public testimony scheduled to begin at approximately 10:00am. The hearing will take place at the E.H. Hereford University Center, Rosebud Theatre at 300 West First Street in Arlington, with parking available in Lot 11.
“I firmly believe that political power comes from the grassroots. By going directly to the people, these hearings force politicians to hear how skyrocketing property taxes are affecting the everyday lives of the people they serve,” stated Taylor. “The appraisal system in Texas was not designed as a vehicle for local governments to subvert the people with a backdoor means to increase taxes and government spending. This money belongs to the people, not government, and failing to reform the process puts government growth on auto-pilot without regard for the will of the people.”Read more
April Mobile Hours Set For McKinney and Fairview
PLANO, TX – State Senator Van Taylor today announced a first round of mobile office hours to assist with constituent casework to take place on April 21st in McKinney and Fairview. Committed to providing superior constituent service, over the course of 2016 Taylor will bring mobile office hours to every city fully contained in Senate District 8.
“Government should serve the people, not the other way around,” stated Taylor. “Unfortunately, all too often interactions with government bureaucracy leave constituents confused and frustrated. That is why I have made it a priority to help constituents with state agency or entity issues, concerns, or questions. I work for you, and as such my office will be going to every corner of the district to set up mobile office hours and bring state government directly to the people. I encourage anyone having issue with a state agency to visit with our office and see if there is anything we can do to help.”Read more
** REVISION **
NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING
COMMITTEE: Property Tax Reform & Relief, Select
TIME & DATE: 10:00 AM, Wednesday, April 27, 2016
PLACE: University of Texas at Arlington
CHAIR: Senator Paul Bettencourt
The Senate Select Committee on Property Tax Reform and Relief will meet on Wednesday, April 27, 2016 at 8:00am. The hearing will be held at the following location:
University of Texas at Arlington
E.H. Hereford University Center, Rosebud Theatre
300 West First St., Arlington, Texas 76019
Parking will be available in Lot 11.
The Committee will hear invited, resource and public testimony on the following interim charges:
Study the property tax process, including the appraisal system, and
recommend ways to promote transparency, simplicity, and accountability by all taxing entities.
Examine and develop options to further reduce the tax burden on property owners.
Invited testimony will begin at 8:00am.
Public testimony will begin at 10:00am.
Those wishing to give public testimony, please limit prepared remarks to 3 minutes. If submitting written testimony, please submit 20 copies, with your name on each copy, to the Committee during the hearing.
For more information please visit the Committee website at:
Fellow Veteran Represents Frisco in Texas State Senate
(COLLIN/ROCKWALL COUNTIES) - Conservative Republican John Keating is proud to announce the endorsement of fellow veteran and SD 8 State Senator Van Taylor. Keating placed first in the March 1 Republican primary and continues to build on his strong showing with new endorsements from across Collin and Rockwall counties.
Current HD 33 State Rep. Scott Turner (who is not seeking re-election) and Sen. Bob Hall, both of whom represent Rockwall County in the Texas Legislature, have also endorsed Keating. Keating has previously earned the backing of Collin County State Representatives Jeff Leach, Scott Sanford, and Matt Shaheen.
Senator Taylor stated, "As a decorated Senior Counterintelligence Agent in the United States Army, John Keating honorably served our state and nation. John knows firsthand what it takes to keep our families safe and he has the conservative values to effectively represent our district. I can count on John to work with me to pass meaningful border security measures including a comprehensive and absolute ban of sanctuary cities in Texas so we can ensure criminal illegal aliens are not released back into our communities."
Harlingen – For the second time in a row, the Senate Select Committee on Property Tax Reform and Relief had a standing room only turnout in Harlingen for its hearing on property taxes. Chair Paul Bettencourt (SD-7), committee members Senator’s Eddie Lucio (SD-27), Brandon Creighton (SD-4), Van Taylor (SD-8), and Charles Perry (SD-28), as well as Senator Hinojosa (SD-20), who joined the panel for the day, heard invited, resource, and public testimony regarding property tax reform and relief and the appraisal process in Texas.