Texas Governor Rick Perry is calling for reform to the appraisal process in his state. Said the Governor “I say we give that [appraisal] system a dose of accountability, transparency and restraint.” According to the Texas Task Force on Appraisal Reform, the state has the 9th highest property taxes in the country. The Task Force Report recommended 5 legislative changes and one Constitutional measure.
The Texas Association of REALTORS applauds the statements made by the Governor. TAR Chairmperson Brooke Hunt stated that appraisal reform is a key component of their legislative agenda this year. In TAR’s 2009 Legislative Priorities report, they state that the current appraisal system greatly improved equity in property tax distribution but still has wide disparities within central appraisal districts. Among other things, TAR supports:
1) legislation repealing the Board of Tax Professionals and moving its functions to the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts and the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation;
2) the passage of a constitutional amendment to give the comptroller’s office or other state entity authority to enforce uniform standards among all appraisal districts in Texas;
3) efforts to change the order of certain performance reviews conducted by the comptroller’s office, so a methods and procedures review is conducted prior to a property valuation study.
4) legislation that changes how an effective tax rate is calculated to ensure no new revenue is realized by local taxing jurisdictions when local property values increase;
5) efforts to repeal the petition requirement before a rollback election for a city or county is held;
6) legislation requiring a re-appraisal of all real property in certain areas following a natural disaster.
Read other TAR positions here.