I have endeavored to document all the facts that I have used to reach conclusions. Some conclusions are based on personal experiences without documentation, but not much. However, I will swear to their accuracy. As I have stated many times, I only opine in real estate issues. Real estate issues are what drives our tax base.
This blog site is about TAX BASE........which is fueled by real estate.
Many, many discussions and cussing sessions are spent when analyzing the city's expenditures. "Officialdom" tweaks the budget, studies the staffing, assesses the maintenance issues, re-tweaks the budget, studies the staffing, and estimates maintenance costs again.......all in an attempt to determine the money needed to pay the city's bills and keep the services at an acceptable level. Of course, I don't attend the budget meeting, nor do you. However, I often wonder how much discussion is held about the state of the tax base and where is it going. Are any projections ever made regarding the growth of the tax base? If there is no serious discussion about the tax base planning program, there is only one other place to find the money to pay the bills........tax rate and elimination of some tax benefits. You are being slowly fed these numbers for your digestion at the present time. There is some "getting used to" that needs to be done with these new taxes.
Once again, we have had some, but virtually no meaningful increase in tax base. Thanks to some new houses over the past couple of years and appraisal increases courtesy of the Appraisal District, we have had very modest increases in tax base. But, all the hoopla over the past three years has been Bush Tollway and DART. I can attribute only The Villages of Rowlett as having been sired by DART and Tollway influence. The balance of any additional Rowlett growth was not initiated by anything Rowlett has done, but by the strong economy of North Texas. We are getting our allotted growth as determined by the North Texas economy. In my opinion, we are growing a little, not because of our efforts, but in spite of our efforts. For all practical purposes, housing has been shut down. We have a couple of existing subdivisions by Lennar and Highland Homes, and we just got started on The Homestead. That's pretty much it for volume housing. There is some smaller "scattered lot" housing going on, but its not significant. That is all that's going on in a town of 57,000 in North Central Texas, a place with Top Five positions in practically any economic survey currently being conducted and probably the hottest real estate market in the USA. Our population has probably only grown 2,000 or 3,000 persons in the past 4 or 5 years. Everyone around us is bursting at the seams.
So.....what's wrong? Well, we're going to kick it around a bit......then look into the future. In my next post, I'm going to discuss each of my conclusions written since February, wrap them up into two or three final conclusions, then look forward to what we can expect based on past experience. I hope to make it interesting. I know this may not be entertaining reading, but hopefully interesting.