Hot Housing Market Sends San Angelo's Tax Appraisals Sky High Again


SAN ANGELO, TX — In 2023, Tom Green County Appraisal District estimates a range of increase in property valuations in Tom Green County between 19% and 35%.

Higher appraised values, should tax rates remain stagnant at the city, county, and school district means paying more in property taxes in January 2024. The tax you pay on property you own in the county is calculated by multiplying the tax rate by the new appraised value (rate x value).

According to the head of the Tom Green County Appraisal District Tyler Johnson, "Even though that increase is significant, that does not mean that your taxes will increase by an equal amount."

What Johnson is suggesting is that tax rates have as much to do with your total tax bill as his office's appraisals do.

State Rep. Drew Darby said in an exclusive interview with San Angelo LIVE! that moving through this legislative session is a $12 billion school district funding bill that Darby said could reduce the San Angelo ISD tax rate by 15 cents. For those who live inside the San Angelo ISD, the property tax rate — that was last year set at $0.97201 per $100 of valuation — is the biggest chunk of a homeowner's property tax bill. The City of San Angelo taxes at a rate of $ 0.73790 per $100, and Tom Green County's $0.50579 per $100 brings the total property tax rate for property inside the City of San Angelo to $2.21579 total per $100 in valuation.

The three tax rates are determined starting in budget workshops at the three government entities that start during the mid-summer.

The State has several laws in place to help protect our taxpayers. First, the State placed speedbumps in the way of dramatically raising tax rates. The State requires local taxing entities to publish what is called the "No New Revenue Rate." This is the tax rate that will generate the same gross tax revenue as the previous year. It exposes effective tax increases when a governing body does not change, or even lowers, the tax rate for the following year.

Of the taxing entities that contract the Tom Green County Appraisal District, only one, Irion County Water Conservation District, set their tax rate at the No New Revenue Rate:

Taxing Entity FT 2022 Tax Rate FY 2022 No New Revenue Rate Effective Tax Rate Increase Amount Effective Tax Rate Increase Percent
San Angelo ISD 0.97201 0.95540 0.01661 1.7088%
City of San Angelo 0.73790 0.65366 0.08424 11.4162%
Tom Green County 0.50579 0.46887 0.03692 7.2995%
Christoval ISD 0.94290 0.87614 0.06676 7.0803%
Grape Creek ISD 1.12970 0.93445 0.19525 17.2833%
Miles ISD 1.24290 1.21847 0.02443 1.9656%
Irion County WCD 0.00655 0.00655 0 0%

Should a taxing entity desire to set a tax rate that will produce a revenue increase of 3.5 percent or more over the previous year's property tax revenue, the tax rate must be placed to a ballot. The State calls the process Truth in Taxation.

The City of San Angelo effectively increased its tax rate over 11 percent for FY 2022! If voters unhappy with property tax bills watched the effective tax rate increases, those voters could vote for candidates who will fight for lower tax rates.

There are other protections, too. The assessed value for homesteads (the amount on which most homeowners pay taxes) cannot increase by more than 10% in a single year. Most property owners will likely see 10 percent increases in the accessed value after two years of double-digit appraisal increases.

The Tom Green County Appraisal District began mailing an estimated 50,000 Notices of Value to property owners in Tom Green County on April 15, along with two additional mailings on May 1 and May 22. The mailing of value notices begins a multiple-step process that allows taxpayers to interact with the appraisal district regarding their value and the entities within Tom Green County that set their final tax rate. Once a property owner receives a Notice of Value, they will have 30 days from the date of the notice to file a protest with the District. The Tom Green CAD makes this convenient where taxpayers can file a protest online through the District website, mail a completed protest form which was included with the notice of value, or call the District to schedule an appointment to discuss your value with an appraiser.

When a property owner receives their Notice of Value, Johnson said is crucial to verify if the notice lists a qualified exemption such as a homestead exemption, over-65 exemption, a disabled person exemption or a disabled veteran exemption. To qualify for an exemption you must own and occupy a residence during that calendar year. Receiving a homestead exemption limits the annual taxable value to a 10% increase and provides an average tax reduction of $350 to $400 dollars a year, Johnson said. The District stresses that it has never been more critical to have a homestead exemption and the resulting 10% cap in assessed value than it is today.

Johnson said his job is to appraise values in accordance with guidance from the State Comptroller. It's up to the taxing entities to decide where to set the rate. He stressed that his vision is to be as transparent about the appraisal process as possible and to allow every taxpayer impacted by these increases to be able to protest them. This year, Johnson said the Tom Green CAD will have two Appraisal Review Boards, not one like in years past, to hear the increasing number of protests he anticipates will occur.

With two years of dramatic valuation increases in real estate, this is not the era to allow taxing entities to maintain the same tax rate as the previous year and brag about not raising taxes.

Darby said that finding more relief for property owners is a priority of the Republican-controlled Texas House and Senate this year. The anticipated school district tax reduction is likely the largest (in tax savings) this session. The Texas Legislature has a great track record in reducing property taxes. In 2018, the San Angelo ISD tax rate was $1.121. Today, it is $0.97201. That large reduction is a direct result of laws passed in Austin over the past five years.

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My taxes, like every other serf in the city, went up dramatically these past two years.  I sold one of those properties last month. The difference between the appraisal districts value and my actual selling price was 35%! Yeah, the Tom Green Appraisal District over valued (over taxed) my property by 35%. Ludicrous!  And I’ve already begun to receive new “proposed” increases in the properties I still own. Time for the oppressed, over-taxed, slaves of this city to raise hell. Vote those currently in office out! Have the taxes of our political overlords increased as much as the folks they supposedly represent? Check for yourself on the appraisal district’s website.  Then get angry. 

YUP! Republicans claim they hate taxes, yet in tom green county and san angelo, where no democrat even ran in the last election, they do things like this.

Pretty sure whoever runs the Oasis of Texas is some kind of cryptid or something. You can vote, but until you undo their potent magicks I'm pretty sure they'll just keep raising taxes.

If you think that sounds irrational, explain the finances and the way the city runs.

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