FORT WORTH — Taxpayers in Fort Worth have a new tool at the fingertips. The city's My Property Tax Dollars at Work program, unveiled Tuesday, lets residents see exactly how their tax money is being spent.
It's easy to use. Just go online, plug in the appraised value of your home, and within seconds you'll see a complete breakdown of how your tax bill is allocated.
Horatio Porter, the city’s budget officer, said residents stand to gain a great deal of knowledge from the program. "The ultimate goal is to demonstrate how we're accountable for what they've given us in terms of resources," he said.
Porter came up with the idea after seeing a similar program operated by the City of Houston. He said Fort Worth's program goes into a little more detail.
For example: The dollar amount that goes to each department or city service is displayed, the first time this kind of information has been available in one place, online, in Fort Worth.
Porter hopes to be able to compare the numbers with other cities and better understand how residents pay for services.
The program gives citizens the ability to update their percentages every year so they can have the latest budget information at the click of a mouse.
Porter said the program won't cost the city any money to maintain because it's a self-sustaining system established by the city's IT department.
The program went online Tuesday afternoon.