Howard County taxpayers could see an average 24% increase.
Notices will soon be mailed to property owners whose value increased from 2022 to 2023. While many owners feel the values of property have decreased, the data throughout Texas does not support a decrease. There was an average increase across the state of 15%-30%. Unfortunately, the Appraisal District must keep pace with the increases in order for local schools to receive full funding and to comply with equal and uniform taxation.
Property owners should review their notice of value. This year, the notice focuses on value and will not include tax estimates. A postcard will be mailed to you with website information in August, that will give you the exact amount of tax you will pay and meeting dates and times of local tax units so you will know when they are setting their tax rates.
When a property owner looks at the value proposed by the appraisal district, they should ask themselves if their property would likely sell for that amount. If not, they should file a protest on the form that will be enclosed. The deadline for filing is 30 days from the date of the notice mailing. They will receive a call from the local appraisal district to discuss the value informally or they may be scheduled for an in-person meeting. If the taxpayer is not agreeable after the sharing of data between the appraisal district and them, then they have a right to appeal to the Appraisal Review Board (ARB), a group of local citizens who live in the appraisal district and have been appointed by the local Appraisal District Board of Directors. They will listen to the evidence provided by both parties and decide based on the preponderance of the evidence presented. The taxpayer may appeal the findings of the ARB to District Court or arbitration.
The issues that may be protested include:
- The appraised or market value of the property
- Unequal appraisal of the owner’s property
- Inclusion of the property on the appraisal records
- Denial of a partial exemption such as a homestead exemption
- Determination that agricultural or timberland designation has been denied
- Determination that agricultural of timberland has had a change of use and is subject to a rollback tax
- Identification of the taxing unit or taxing units in which the property is located
- Determination that the taxpayer is the owner of the property
- Any other action of the appraisal district office or the ARB that adversely affects the owner
The ARB schedules a hearing and sends the protesting property owner written notice of the date, time, and place of the hearing. The law contains specific timelines and procedures for both the property owner and the ARB through the appraisal protest process. Copies are available from Howard County Appraisal District at 315 S. Main St. Suite A, Big Spring, Texas, on our website at www.howardcad.org or from the Comptroller’s Property Tax Assistance Division website at comptroller.texas.gov/property-tax/. Additional local information can be obtained by contacting HCAD at 432-263-8301.