Coming on the heels of a looming deadline for taxpayers to file protests for the district’s recent property appraisals, this move coming at this time is not the smartest thing I have seen operating in county government.
See, the Republican-dominated county government plays a little game here in
And then they lower the tax rates.
Well for one thing, the county’s open spaces are rapidly disappearing as more and more arable land gets built on. Farmland is taxed at one rate, but a personal residence is taxed at a whole new, and higher rate.
But that’s just the half of it. The other half is property value appraisal. Property is taxed at so much per $100 of assessed value. Increase the appraisal and you increase the taxes owed (while the tax rate stays low, as promised).
Now I wrote here not too long ago that the county was going to have to tighten its belt because property values are going down in
Well the Fort Bend CAD begs to differ.
Bringing us back to the Fort Bend CAD’s sparkly new building. What is wrong with the one that they are in? Why do they need to build a new larger facility? Well it all comes down to those darn whiney taxpayers.
“The number of property tax protests has increased from about 9,800 per year 10 years ago to more than 54,000 per year, CAD Board Chairman Lee Duggan III said in a statement accompanying the resolution.”
“‘To accommodate the added workload, staff has increased 66%,” Duggan said. ‘Although the appraisal district has been able to effectively control costs, their ability to currently operate efficiently is negatively impacted by the lack of adequate office space. In addition, taxpayers are experiencing reduced levels of customer service due to inadequate meeting space and parking.’”
Get it? The Fort Bend CAD needs a new bigger facility because their appraisals are bringing them too much business.
Well this exemplary sense of timing is going to earn the CAD some stiff rebukes. There is already a resolution drafted in the commissioners court, courtesy of Precinct 1 commissioner Richard Morrison, a resolution that will be voted on tomorrow. Here is the business end of it:
“Whereas many businesses and landowners are suffering because of the economy in Fort Bend County and the nation, and whereas some appraisals have risen by as much as 2,300%, and whereas there exists overwhelming public opposition to the proposed New Facility, now therefore be it resolved that this court joins with the community in its strong opposition to the currently proposed New Facility and pledges to seek and pursue more reasonable alternatives.”
I can think of one reasonable alternative. Scale back on some of the more ridiculous appraisals that the CAD makes. Scale back on that and what results are fewer appraisal protests. When you raise the appraised value of property that can’t possibly sell, it speaks volumes for the nonsense that goes on in that office. Taxpayers know that simply living in
But I think they want their deaths postponed for awhile, and they want their taxes to be fair.