Property Tax Today

Quarterly Property Tax News

January 1, 2022

Property Tax Today

Quarterly Property Tax News

Volume 19 | Jan 2022

Property Tax Today features content regarding upcoming deadlines, action items and information releases.

Please let us know what you would like to see in future editions by sending property tax questions and/or suggested topics to Property Tax Communications. We will gladly address property tax matters under our authority.

Message from the Comptroller

photo of Comptroller Hegar
Glenn Hegar
Texas Comptroller

In November, I released the Certification Revenue Estimate (CRE) for the fiscal 2022-23 biennium. After each legislative session, the agency releases the CRE to provide the detailed basis by which my office certified the budget and any other bills making appropriations to revise estimates in the biennial revenue estimate, reflect legislative activity and current economic information, and take into account final revenue numbers for the recently ended fiscal year.

As a result of legislative actions and an updated economic forecast, I now expect revenue available for general spending in 2022-23 to total about $135.32 billion, up 15.1 percent from the 2020-21 biennium.

The Texas economy rebounded strongly from the deep but short recession caused by the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, and we project continued expansion of the Texas economy in this biennium. Though we remain optimistic, this is a conservative estimate based on several risks. I will continue to monitor the Texas economy and state revenues closely and will keep the public informed of significant events as they arise.

In mid-December, I had the pleasure of addressing attendees of the Property Tax Institute (PTI), co-hosted by the Property Tax Assistance Division (PTAD) and the V.G. Young Institute of County Government. PTI always provides informative property tax industry content, and I would like to thank everyone who participated or attended.

PTAD also released pre-preliminary information for the 2021 School District Property Value Study (PVS) to chief appraisers, school superintendents and appraisal firms. This allows them to review the information and notify our office of any clerical errors in their information before PTAD issues the preliminary School District PVS findings at the end of January.

PTAD continues working diligently to update the vast amount of property tax information published through our website, publications, forms and videos to reflect changes from the 87th Legislature. In the interim, our office will continue working closely with both chambers by offering property tax information and counsel, as requested.

PTAD Leadership Changes

Shannon Murphy

Allison Mansfield
Assistant Director

On Nov. 1, 2021, Korry Castillo took over as Associate Deputy Comptroller for Agency Operations, which includes seven agency divisions including PTAD.

As part of the transition, Shannon Murphy took over as the director of PTAD, having served as assistant director for three years. Allison Mansfield, formerly the assistant director of Legislative Affairs, moved into the role of PTAD assistant director.

We are also pleased to announce the hiring of Shaunte Bryant as Education and Communications manager and the promotion of Lorraine Miller to Field Appraiser Operations manager.

By combining these individuals’ knowledge and experience with the excellent staff and technical expertise at PTAD, the division is well positioned to continue the outstanding work it has performed through the years for the agency and the state.

School District PVS Pre-Preliminary Information Release

Each year in December, our office releases local data and values for the sampled properties in the School District PVS to chief appraisers, appraisal firms and school superintendents for review. These data do not include values as determined by PTAD and are not posted on our website.

Throughout the year, our field appraisers send clerical error reports to chief appraisers to verify the data received from their offices that are specific to the sample properties studied in the current School District PVS.

On Dec. 16, 2021, our office sent pre-preliminary data in the following in separate emails:

  • pre-preliminary self-report data to chief appraisers and superintendents (not specific to individual accounts in the School District PVS sample);
  • pre-preliminary Category G data to chief appraisers and appraisal firms; and
  • pre-preliminary Category J data to chief appraisers and appraisal firms.

We requested chief appraisers, superintendents and appraisal firms to carefully review the local value information for accuracy and report any clerical errors to our office so we can add, delete or correct sample characteristics before we release the preliminary School District PVS findings at the end of January. The 2021 School District PVS has not been finalized and is subject to change.

School District PVS Preliminary Findings Certification and Appeal

Our office will certify the 2021 School District PVS preliminary findings to the commissioner of education before Feb. 1.

School districts, eligible property owners and their agents can file a petition protesting the preliminary findings after they are released at the end of January. The petition must be filed within 40 calendar days after the date our office certifies preliminary findings of school district taxable value to the commissioner of education. Our School District Property Value Study webpage provides information regarding the protest process, and our staff is available until an appeal is filed to help answer questions about what to include in an appeal.

Data Release for School District PVS Preliminary Invalid Findings

To assist in the preparation of a protest of the School District PVS preliminary findings, school superintendents or their authorized agents can request information for school districts with invalid local value. The data release contains standard, commonly requested School District PVS information and is part of the protest prehearing exchanges under Comptroller Rule 9.4311.

To request the data release, school superintendents or their authorized agents can submit the Data Release Request for School District Property Value Study Preliminary Findings - Invalid Findings form (PDF) to Property Tax Open Records. The information included in the data release is listed under the Important Information section of the request form. To request the data release for multiple school districts, agents must submit the Data Release School District Listing Template (XLSX) along with a single request form.

ARB Training Registration

Registration for appraisal review board (ARB) training is now open and closes on Feb. 25, 2022.

ARB members must complete the Comptroller’s training course and statement at the conclusion of training to participate in ARB hearings. This requirement is especially important to an ARB member in the second year of his or her first term because the member may not have taken the continuing education course in the prior year.

This year, we offer a combination of training options that includes a limited number of live in-person sessions, a live virtual session over Zoom and online self-paced video links that will become available in March 2022.

All virtual training options will be free of charge. The live in-person sessions require a $50 registration fee for all attendees, and space is limited. Register ARB members on time so they complete training requirements prior to the scheduling of ARB hearings in 2022.

Details about training options, live in-person locations, dates and other matters, including registration, are available on the ARB Training webpage.

This training also meets the Tax Code Section 41A.06 requirement for potential arbitrators applying for inclusion in the Comptroller’s Arbitrator Registry and allows continuing education credit for property tax professionals licensed with TDLR.

Electronic Property Transaction Submissions (EPTS)

Tax Code Section 5.07(c) requires appraisal districts to maintain property sales information collected as part of their uniform record keeping systems. Appraisal districts must submit the data to our office by Feb. 1 and by Aug. 1, when we compile the data into a statewide database. The EPTS Manual (PDF) gives an overview of the prescribed electronic format and provides information regarding submission procedures.

Remember to use the Texas Property Tax Assistance Property Classification Guide (PDF) when classifying property for value analysis and in reporting valuations for the biennial School Disrict PVS.

The companion Texas Property Tax Assistance Property Classification Guide video allows for continuing education credit for property tax professionals registered with TDLR.

Operations Survey

Tax Code Section 5.03(b) authorizes our office to require an annual report on the administration and operation of each appraisal office, and the operations survey provides data for that report.

We sent electronic surveys to appraisal districts for collection of their operations data for the 2021 tax year on Jan. 14, 2022. Appraisal districts must submit responses directly into the online survey by March 31, 2022. Paper copies are not accepted, but you can request a non-fillable PDF version of the survey for use as a working copy only from our Education and Communications team.

Survey data from previous years and a data visualization tool are available on PTAD's Property Tax Reports and Survey Data webpage.

Rendition Statements and Property Reports

Rendition statements and property report deadlines depend on property type. The statements and reports are due to chief appraisers after Jan. 1 and no later than the deadline indicated below. Allowed extensions vary by property type as referenced below.

Rendition Statements and Reports Deadline Allowed Extension(s)
Property generally April 15
  • May 15 upon written request
  • Additional 15 days for good cause shown
Property regulated by the Public Utility Commission of Texas, the Railroad Commission of Texas, the federal Surface Transportation Board or the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Tax Code Section 22.23(d). April 30
  • May 15 upon written request
  • Additional 15 days for good cause shown

Tax Bills and Delinquency

In most cases, the deadline for paying your property taxes is Jan. 31. Taxes that remain unpaid on Feb. 1 are delinquent. Penalty and interest charges are added to the original amount.

If taxes go delinquent, the tax collector adds a 6 percent penalty and 1 percent interest on Feb. 1. Penalty continues to accrue at 1 percent per month until July 1. On July 1, the penalty becomes 12 percent. Interest is charged at the rate of 1 percent per month, with no maximum. PTAD offers a 2021-22 Penalty and Interest Chart for use in calculating the total amount due on delinquent property tax bills.

Private attorneys hired by taxing units to collect delinquent accounts can charge an additional penalty of up to 20 percent to cover their fees. If the delinquency date is postponed, penalties and interest begin accruing on the postponed delinquency date.

Failure to receive a tax bill does not affect the validity of the tax, penalty or interest due, the delinquency date, the existence of a tax lien or any procedure the taxing unit institutes to collect the tax.

Check with the tax collection office on local payment options that may be available, such as credit card payments, deferrals, discounts, escrow accounts, installment payments, split payments, partial payments and work contracts.

Information regarding payment of property taxes is available on PTAD's Property Tax Bills webpage.

Local Government Relief Applications

The application period for a qualified city or county to apply for state assistance for a local government disproportionately affected by the 100 percent disabled veterans exemption under Local Government Code Section 140.011 is Feb. 1 through April 1.

To apply, a city or county must submit Form 50-833, Local Governments Disproportionately Affected by Disabled Veterans Exemption (PDF), together with the required documentation during the application period. The application period cannot be extended.

Our Local Government Relief webpage provides further information regarding the application process and required documentation.

Constitutional Amendments

On Nov. 2, 2021, Texas voters approved the following property tax-related amendments to the Texas Constitution:

  • A property tax exemption of property owned by the surviving spouse of a disabled person.
  • A property tax exemption of property owned by the surviving spouse of a member of the armed services killed or fatally injured in the line of duty and allows late filing of applications for the exemption.

For more information on the election results, please refer to the Texas Secretary of State's website.

On May 7, 2022, Texas voters will see two additional property tax-related constitutional amendments on the ballot:

  • A proposal to provide an adjustment to the school district tax limitation based on school district tax rate compression provided in HB 3 from the 86th Legislative Session; and
  • A proposal to increase the residence homestead exemption for school district from $25,000 to $40,000.

MAP Reviews

The 2022-23 Methods and Assistance Program (MAP) review cycle begins in January for appraisal districts scheduled to receive a MAP review in 2022. MAP reviewers will use the recently adopted questions, guidelines and data collected to review appraisal district governance; taxpayer assistance; operations and appraisal standards; procedures and methodology used; and compliance with generally accepted standards, procedures and methodology. MAP reviewers will work with appraisal districts through August to develop preliminary recommendations.

Our Methods and Assistance Program webpage provides the 2022-23 MAP review questions and guidelines.

Well Done!

This quarter we turn the spotlight on Chief Appraiser Linda Zarate and the staff of Upton County Appraisal District for remarkable improvement between their 2019 and 2021 MAP Reviews, providing a shining example of how to implement MAP recommendations from one review to the next. Way to go, Upton County Appraisal District!

Capitalization (Cap) Rate

Tax Code sections 23.53 and 23.74 provide the methods for determining the cap rate for calculating agricultural and timber land values. In 2022, appraisal districts must use a cap rate of 10 percent for appraising agricultural or open-space land and a cap rate of 6.85 percent for appraising timberland. For more cap rate information, see our Cap Rate for Special Valuations webpage.

Farm and Ranch Survey

Senate Bill 1245 from the 87th Legislature, Regular Session, requires our office to prepare and issue an instructional guide providing information to assist individuals in completing the Farm and Ranch Survey. To comply with this requirement, PTAD recently published the 2022 Farm and Ranch Survey Instructional Guide (PDF). We will post the 2022 Farm and Ranch Survey requesting 2021 farm and ranch production data in September 2022.

Prior Issues >>

Please be advised that the information in this newsletter is current as of the date of its publication and is provided solely as an informational resource. The information provided neither constitutes nor serves as a substitute for legal advice. Questions regarding the meaning or interpretation of any information included or referenced herein should be directed to legal counsel and not to the Comptroller's staff.