About 3,400 Victoria County property owners object to appraisal

PROPERTY APPRAISALS

• Property appraisal hearings will occur Monday through July 25.

• The tax rolls are certified in July, and the city adopts its tax rate in September along with the budget.

• Each taxpayer will then receive a tax statement in October, which is due Feb. 1.

More than 3,400 Victoria County property owners are hoping for a break on their tax appraisals this year.

The Victoria County Appraisal District will begin hearing arguments Monday from property owners who filed for a protest, including Darryl Burns.

"We all sense that there's something unsettling about not just our tax situation," Burns said. "We're all trying to fix the same things."

Burns' property, a 3-acre tract off Krawietz Road - 2 acres of which is a pond - has more than doubled in value during five years.

When he received his appraisal notice, Burns knew immediately he'd file a protest on the $32,970 value, which is an increase of $7,010 over the previous year.

Last year, about 3 percent of Victoria County property owners took steps to contest their appraisals. The appraisal review board adjusted about a fourth of those.

Deputy Chief Appraiser Diane Munson said not every person who files a protest goes before the appraisal review board. Taxpayers can work with an appraiser to reach an agreement on the value. If that's unsuccessful, the taxpayer can then have a 15-minute hearing before the five-person appraisal review board, Munson said.

Burns, a self-described libertarian, disagrees with the process.

"They should come to us, come to my house and say why they're charging this," he said. "It's 'bass-ackwards.' ... If I don't pay my taxes, the government is going to come and get it. We rent our property from the state."