Tax Code Section 5.041(f) prohibits the Comptroller's office from advising a property owner, a property owner's agent, the chief appraiser or an appraisal district employee on a matter that the Comptroller's office knows is the subject of an ARB protest. The Comptroller's office may, however, provide advice to an ARB member as authorized by Tax Code Sections 5.041(a)(4) or 5.103 and may communicate with the ARB chairman or a taxpayer liaison officer concerning a complaint filed under Tax Code Section 6.052.
The Comptroller's office has a toll-free line (800-252-7551) dedicated to assisting ARB members with technical questions relating to the duties and responsibilities of ARB members and property appraisal issues.
The Comptroller's office issues an annual report that summarizes ARB survey responses, comments received by taxpayer liaison officers and review of adopted ARB hearing procedures.
Tax Code Section 6.41(d) requires the local administrative district judge in the county in which the appraisal district is established to appoint ARB members. In counties with a consolidated ARB, the local administrative district judges in the counties jointly appoint the ARB members.
Tax Code Section 6.41(b-2) requires appraisal district boards of directors in counties with a population of 1 million or more to increase the number of ARB members to allow certain complex property protests to be referred to special ARB panels. Special panel ARB members must meet the following qualifications to be appointed to special ARB panels:
If an ARB needs special panel members but does not have enough qualified applicants, a special panel ARB member may be appointed who holds a bachelor's degree in any field.
Tax Code Section 6.425(b)(1) and (2) requires a property to meet two criteria to be eligible for a protest hearing in front of a special panel.
|Calendar Year||Minimum Appraised Value as Determined by Appraisal District|
Tax Code Section 5.103(a) requires the Comptroller's office to prepare model ARB hearing procedures. Tax Code Sections 5.103(d) and 41.01(c) require the ARB to adopt hearing procedures that incorporate the Comptroller's model hearing procedures.
The model hearing procedures address specific matters required by Tax Code Section 5.103. An ARB may include supplemental procedures in its local hearing procedures regarding legal and administrative matters that are not addressed by the model procedures. The local procedures, however, may not contradict, negate or otherwise substantively change the model procedures. ARBs should seek advice from legal counsel in establishing local hearing procedures.
Not later than May 15, the ARB must hold a public meeting to discuss its proposed hearing procedures prior to adoption. The ARB must send a copy of the adopted procedures to the appraisal district board of directors, the taxpayer liaison officer and the Comptroller's office (firstname.lastname@example.org) within 15 days of adoption and post the adopted procedures in each hearing room and on the appraisal district website.
In compliance with Tax Code Section 5.104, the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts provides a survey as a reasonable opportunity for the following persons who attended appraisal review board (ARB) hearings to offer comments and suggestions concerning the ARB:
The survey is intended to capture information concerning the performance of ARB panels and full ARBs, but not the results of protest hearings. One survey should be completed per hearing conducted by a single ARB panel or the full ARB in a single day, whether concerning one account or several accounts and whether the accounts are related to the same property or not. Persons participating in protest hearings before the same ARB panel or full ARB on several days may complete one survey on each day. Persons participating in multiple protest hearings before different ARB panels are allowed to complete one survey for each panel in a single day.
Survey respondents may submit the surveys directly to the Comptroller's Property Tax Assistance Division (PTAD) and are no longer required to complete surveys at the appraisal district office.
Tax Code Section 6.052 requires appraisal districts in counties with populations of more than 120,000 to appoint taxpayer liaison officers.
The appraisal district board of directors appoints the taxpayer liaison officer, who serves at the pleasure of that board. Chief appraisers or other persons who perform appraisal or legal services for appraisal districts for compensation are not eligible to be taxpayer liaison officers.
The primary responsibilities for taxpayer liaison officers are to administer public access functions; resolve disputes; handle ARB complaints, comments and suggestions; provide public information; present reports to the board of directors; and assist the local administrative district law judge.
Taxpayer liaison officers may be called upon to assist ARBs in preparing local hearing procedures based on the Comptroller's model hearing procedures and Tax Code Section 6.052 requires taxpayer liaison officers to assist taxpayers, agents, and any member of the public with the Comptroller's ARB Survey.
Taxpayer liaison officers are responsible for receiving and compiling a list of comments, complaints and suggestions filed by chief appraisers, property owners or their agents concerning matters listed in the ARB's hearing procedures or any other matter related to the fairness and efficiency of the ARB. The taxpayer liaison officer must forward to the Comptroller's office all comments and suggestions received outside of the Comptroller's electronic ARB survey no later than December 31 of each year. The comments must be entered verbatim using the Comptroller's template.