AUSTIN (KXAN) — On Tuesday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott responded to a recent letter from members of the Texas Congressional Delegation asking him to pause property tax increases for 2020 due to the financial strain placed upon Texans during the coronavirus pandemic.

Last week, Congresswomen Eddie Bernice Johnson (TX-30), Veronica Escobar (TX-16), Sheila Jackson Lee (TX-18), Lizzie Fletcher (TX-07), Sylvia Garcia (TX-29) and Congressmen Henry Cuellar (TX-28), Colin Allred (TX-32), Marc Veasey (TX-33), and Filemon Vela (TX-34) co-signed a letter to Gov. Abbott asking the Texas State Legislature “to suspend any raises, interest and penalties on Texas property taxes for the current taxable year.”

“Additionally, the last thing our fellow Texans need is a change in property appraisals leading to an increase in property taxes,” the letter to Gov. Abbott reads.

In his response letter, Gov. Abbott says he supports “lessening the tax burden,” but that the focus should be on local governments — which set the property tax rates.

“Property owners shouldn’t be saddled with rising property taxes while dealing with a pandemic,” said Governor Abbott. “As a result, local governments, who set property tax rates, should find ways to reduce the tax burden on Texans. Whether we’re facing times of challenge or times of prosperity—raising taxes on the people of Texas is never the answer.”