Tennessee Senate passes resolution to prevent statewide property tax

The Tennessee Senate took a significant step on Thursday by passing a joint resolution that aims to prohibit a statewide property tax. This move highlights the state’s commitment to protecting property owners from any potential burden of additional taxes.

House Joint Resolution 81, which received a solid 81-11 vote in the House, marks the initial stage towards enshrining the property tax ban in the Tennessee Constitution. Although Tennessee presently does not have a property tax, Senator Frank Niceley, R-Strawberry Plains, pointed out that the state did have one until 1949, when it was reduced to 0%, a rate that has since been maintained.

According to Niceley, the amendment process would eliminate the possibility of the state implementing a statewide property tax in the future, in addition to local property taxes.

According to Niceley, the property tax should be allocated to counties and cities as it is a local tax.

Next year, the resolution will need to secure a two-thirds majority in both bodies of the Legislature before it can proceed to a statewide ballot in 2026.

Americans For Prosperity-Tennessee has been advocating for a ban on statewide property tax.

According to Tori Venable, the State Director of AFP-Tennessee, the organization plans to mobilize grassroots volunteers and conduct campaigns in order to educate the people of Tennessee about the process of amending the state constitution. Venable expressed excitement about the opportunity to build upon the recent legislative victory and maintain the momentum to ensure that Tennessee constitutionally prohibits the statewide property tax, just like it did with the income tax.

Sen. Jeff Yarbro, a Democrat from Nashville, believes that it is misleading for the state Legislature to deny its involvement in property taxation when it mandates local governments to impose local property taxes.

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