UPDATED PROPERTY TAX INFORMATION
NOW AVAILABLE FOR GAINES COUNTY TAXPAYERS
New and updated property tax information has just been compiled by Gaines County Appraisal District and is available now to assist taxpayers. This property tax information is current and covers a wide range of topics, such as taxpayer remedies, exemptions, appraisals and is of value to select groups, such as disabled veterans and persons who are 65 years of age or older.
“Whether you are a homeowner, business owner, disabled veteran or a taxpayer, it’s important you know your rights concerning property tax laws.” said Gayla Harridge, Chief Appraiser of the Gaines County Appraisal District. “You can contact us about any property tax issues with full confidence that we will provide you the most complete, accurate and up-to-date available information to assist you.”
This includes information about the following programs.
• Property Tax Exemptions for Disabled Veterans – The law provides partial exemptions for any property owned by veterans who are disabled, spouses of and survivors of deceased disabled veterans and survivors of military personnel who died on active duty. The amount of exemption is determined according to percentage of service-connected disability. The law also provides a 100% exemption for 100% disabled veterans and their surviving spouses and for surviving spouses of U.S. armed service members killed in action.
• Property Tax Exemptions – Non-profit organizations that meet statutory requirements may seek property tax exemptions and must apply to their county appraisal district by a specific date. Businesses that receive tax abatements granted by taxing units, ship inventory our of Texas that may be eligible for the Freeport exemption; store certain goods in transit in warehouses that are moved with 175 days; construct, install or acquire pollution control property; own and operate energy storage systems; convert landfill-generated gas; or store offshore drilling equipment while not in use may also be eligible for statutory exemptions.
• Rendering Taxable Property – If a business owns tangible personal property that is used to produce income, the business must file a rendition with its local county appraisal district by April 15, or they may request an extension until May 15. Personal property includes inventory and equipment used by a business. Owners do not have to render exempt property such as church property or an agriculture producer’s equipment used for farming.
• Appraisal Notices – Normally, taxpayers receive a notice of appraised value from the appraisal district. The city, county school districts and other local taxing unites will use the appraisal district’s value to set property taxes for the coming year.
• Property Taxpayer Remedies – This Comptroller publication explains in detail how to protest a property appraisal, what issues the county appraisal review board (ARB) may consider and what to expect during a protest hearing. The publication also discusses the options of taking a taxpayer’s case to district court or entering into binding arbitration if the taxpayer is dissatisfied with the outcome of the ARB hearing.
• Homestead Exemptions – A homestead is generally defined as the home and land used as the owner’s principal residence on Jan 1 of the tax year. A homestead exemption reduces the appraised value of the home and, as a result, lowers property taxes. Applications are submitted to the appraisal district.
• Productivity Appraisal – Property owners who use land production, agricultural purposes or wildlife management can be granted property tax relief on their land. They may apply to the appraisal district for an agricultural appraisal which may result in a lower appraisal of the land based on how much the taxpayer produces, versus what the land would sell for in the open market. Applications must be turned in by April 30.
• Residence Homestead Tax Deferral – Texas homeowners may postpone paying the current property taxes due on the appreciating value of their homes by filing a tax deferral affidavit at their local county appraisal district. This tax relief allows homeowners to pay the property taxes on 105 percent of the preceding year’s appraised value on their homestead, plus the taxes on any new improvements to the homestead. The remaining taxes are postponed, but not cancelled, with interest at 8 percent per year.
• Property Tax Deferral for Persons Age 65 or older and disabled homeowners – Taxpayers who are 65 years of age or older, who are disabled as defined by law, may postpone paying current and delinquent property taxes on their homes by signing a tax deferral affidavit. Once the affidavit is on file, taxes are deferred, but not cancelled, as long as the owner continues to own and live in the home. Interest continues to accrue on unpaid taxes. You may obtain a deferral affidavit at the appraisal district.
• Notice of Availability of Electronic Communication – In appraisal district located in counties with a population of more than 200,000 or that have authorized electronic communications, and that have implemented a system that allows such communications, Chief appraiser and ARB’s may communicate electronically through email or other media with property owners or their designated representatives. Written agreements are required for notices and other documents to be delivered electronically in place of mailing.
• Protesting Property Appraisal Values – Property owners who disagree with the appraisal district’s appraisal of their property for local taxes or for any other action that adversely affects them may protest their property value to the appraisal district’s appraisal review board.
For more information about these programs, please contact Gaines County Appraisal District at (432) 758-3263. More information and application forms are available on the appraisal district’s website at www.gainescad.org and also from the State Comptroller’s Property Tax Assistance Division website at www.window.state.tx.us/taxinfo/proptax/