Information on Issues

For more information on the city's positions on legislative topics, check out Sugar Land's Legislative Agenda for the 86th Session of the Texas Legislature.

Tax Relief

House Bill 2 and Senate Bill 2

The City’s resiliency and our ability to continue providing the services and quality of life you desire is being undermined by legislation currently being considered in Austin – including a misleading “revenue cap” proposal.  The 2.5 percent revenue cap proposed in House Bill 2 and Senate Bill 2 would not only NOT reduce your property taxes or appraised values but would severely restrict our ability to be responsive to your desires for investments in public safety, roads, and infrastructure to support residential mobility and economic development without fundamental changes to how we fund services.  Additional provisions currently being considered by the Texas House of Representatives would effectively prevent the City from funding any new capital projects from property taxes until we could move forward with a bond election – meaning no new drainage, roadway, mobility or facility projects for likely an extended period of time if the bill passes as currently written. 

City Supports Reduction of Overall Tax Burden

The City supports the reduction of the overall tax burden on residents and businesses. In fact, the cornerstone of Sugar Land’s financial management is minimizing the property tax burden on residents.  And we don’t just talk the talk, we walk the walk:

  • Sugar Land has lowered its property tax rate over 18 cents since 1993 and now boasts the second lowest tax rate in the State among cities our size.
  • Over the last 15 years, the average value home has increased by about 5% annually, while the average tax bill has only increased by about 3% annually over the same time period.
  • The City of Sugar Land makes up only 15% of the average residential tax bill.
  • According to a recent citizen satisfaction survey, over 93% of respondents were satisfied or neutral with the value received for their city taxes and fees.

Additionally, over the years City Council has made significant efforts to curb the growth in residential property tax bills by lowering the property tax rate and increasing the homestead exemption – increases to the homestead exemption target savings to residential homeowners. 

Historical Tax Rate & Homestead Exemption

Legislative Actions on HB2 and SB2

On February 6, 2019, the City submitted a letter to the Senate Committee on Property Tax. The letter opposed Senate Bill 2 (SB 2) in its current form and offered the committee a variety of recommendations to improve the bill. Click here to see the letter to the Senate Committee on Property Tax.

In a continued effort to work with state legislators, the City joined a coalition of 24 cities to work hand-in-hand with the bill author to address the property tax issue head on. On February 27, 2019, the coalition submitted a letter to the House Committee on Ways and Means with proposals on how to modify House Bill 2 (HB 2) in order to achieve a win-win solution. Click here to see the letter to the House Committee on Ways and Means.

State Preemption

You deserve a hometown that reflects your values.

The city supports the principles of local control to allow for locally elected officials to make decisions that are beneficial to the interests of city residents and the city as an organization.

Starting with Texas’ statehood in 1845, the legislature began creating cities to do its local work. Cities bear the primary responsibility for the provision of public services such as capital infrastructure and protecting citizens’ health and safety. We’re proud of our unique character which is shaped by the priorities and values of the people who live right here in Sugar Land.

If it’s working, leave it alone.

Year after year Sugar Land has attracted quality employers to the city, bringing in well-paying jobs and a robust economy. The city is home to high-profile corporations including Minute Maid, UnitedHealthcare, Texas Instruments, Schlumberger, Fluor Corporation, Noble Drilling Services, and Bechtel EO to name a few.

The dramatic growth in economic development in Sugar Land is indisputable proof that the decisions the city has made at the local level have produced the kind of community where people want to live, work, play, and do business.

With 97% of respondents believing that Sugar Land is a great place to live in the latest citizen satisfaction survey, we know that it is important to you that we work hard each day to provide you with important, quality services.

Our Home, Our Decisions

The most important decisions we must make as a community involves the level of services we want and how much we are willing to pay for them. The state legislature has the power to change the way that local municipalities provide services. Each year bills are filed by legislators on a variety of legislative topics such as how cities regulate trees and buildings, to municipal revenue and finance, to public safety, and even to how many chickens you can legally have in your home!

Decisions affecting local services should be made at the local level in order to reflect the values and priorities of Sugar Land residents and our unique character. The city will continue to oppose the preemption or erosion of our ability to pursue citizen priorities or respond to local citizen concerns.

Public Health

In preparation of the 2019 Texas Legislative Session, the city is working with legislators and partners to seek the introduction and passage of legislation aimed at increasing the rights of municipalities to access information from state agencies and obligating state agencies to provide information to municipalities on incidents that affect local public health where the State has sole regulatory jurisdiction over, especially when incidents may result in an immediate public health risk or compliance and regulatory issues.

Sugar Land is dedicated to ensuring the health and safety of the public by ensuring that the city and its residents have access to information about public health issues regulated by state agencies.