Property taxes in Texas are at some of the highest rates in the nation. Texas ranks third with a property tax rate of 1.81%. This means, among other things, that property tax protests in the state are a common ordeal. If you own a property in Texas and are dissatisfied with the valuation of your property, then you can always fill out a notice of protest with your local appraisal review board (ARB).
That being said, the ARB isn’t the only governmental entity with which you will be dealing. The county appraisal district (CAD) will mount a case against you during the property tax protest hearing. In Harris County, you would likely need a proper Houston property tax protest company to help you during this time. They will help represent you during the protest hearings in front of the ARB. Who, however, is on the other side of the proverbial fence? Does the board of directors at the CAD take an active role in your protest hearing?
Who Comprises the CAD Board of Directors?
Before we get into whether or not the board of directors takes an active role in your protest hearing, it’s important to understand what the board of directors actually is. Each member of the board of directors is selected by individual taxing units within a county. Taxing units are typically municipalities (e.g. City of Houston), counties (e.g. Harris County), school districts (e.g. Houston Independent School District), and some conservation or reclamation districts. The members on the board are selected based on their qualifications. They are generally business or property owners within the county. In Harris County, there are five voting members and one non-voting member. The non-voting member is either a representative from the Harris County Assessor’s office or the assessor himself.
What Are Their Duties?
The board of directors at a CAD is often responsible for hiring the chief appraiser, making a budget for the district, and appointing members to the ARB. These are the base responsibilities of the board of directors laid out by Texas law. These members do not actively appraise properties or engage in dealings with the ARB beyond appointment. They are, however, responsible for hiring the person who makes all the appraisals in the county (the chief appraiser).
So, Do They Take an Active Role in Protest Hearings?
The board of directors typically does not take an active role in protest hearings. Of course, all protest hearings require a representative from the CAD to make their own case. This representative is usually an attorney who was hired by the board of directors. The board itself does not present evidence or information during the hearing process.
The board hires a qualified professional who understands the ins and outs of property tax laws in Texas. This individual will be able to provide evidence to build up their case. If you are protesting your property tax appraisal, then you should understand that you’ll be going up against a qualified attorney from the CAD. It makes sense for you to also enlist the services of a qualified professional during your property tax appeal planning. This ensures that you’ll have the best chance of winning your protest.
If you have any question regarding property tax protest hearing, contact O’Connor & Associates today. One of our experts will give you the information you are looking for.