LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Paying price for ‘overlooked’ drive

By Morriss Johnson | Published Saturday, June 10, 2017
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Did you know that the Wise County Appraisal District can use “discovered concrete drive” at your property to exceed the state law that prohibits more than a 10-percent increase in the appraised value of a homestead? I didn’t either until my recent protest meeting.

State law clearly states that “A Texas county appraisal district may not increase the appraised value of a homestead by more than 10 percent in a given tax year.” And, so far I have not found an exemption for “discovered concrete drive.”

When I questioned how the appraisal district could increase the appraised value by 11.17 percent, I was told the appraisal district had “overlooked” this improvement in previous years and now that it is discovered, this justifies the increase above the limited percentage dictated by state law.

Never mind that the concrete drive was part of the plat filed with the county and constructed when the house was built more than eight years ago. The only authority stated by the chief appraiser was “yes, we can exceed the 10-percent limit because we discovered your concrete drive.”

Now, for the kicker. We own two empty lots (lots covered in trees and underbrush) and the appraised value of those are being increased by 76 percent each from 2016 to 2017. Yes, you read that correctly – a 76-percent increase in appraised value on each unimproved lot. There are two adjacent lots to ours that are being devalued by 15.6 percent and 25.6 percent. Additionally, three more lots up the street that are being devalued by 24.8 percent (two lots) and 27.6 percent.

My protests were denied, even though I presented comparable lot values and comparable home values near our home. I told the appraisal district that I did not agree with their decision and that I would appeal.

When I asked how to go about appealing, there was no answer initially. When I asked a second time, I was told that appeal instructions would be included when the appraisal district mails out their “Order Determining Protest.”

And, yes I will appeal!

Morriss Johnson
Runaway Bay

One Response to “Paying price for ‘overlooked’ drive”

  1. Maritha Gan says:

    Municipal Governments are killing us and trying to get us all out of our homes. Wise County does not want poor people or eldery here anymore. They break the laws, they go above their 10% cap…which is still outrageous! This is a tax on UNREALIZED CAPITAL GAINS. If I buy my house for 100,000.00 and they “say it is now worth 200,000.00 it is illusory. I have not sold the house and may never. They are taxing on something I have not realized. They are taxing away any profit you may have in years to come as they are taking their pound of flesh every year and there is so much flesh they can take before we are dead! They only have to fight us individually…the people must vote out the elected officials that have allowed these run-away Appraisals!!! We need to band together as a people who insist that Taxation is Theft and this is Taxation without representation. This tax is also fully illegal and against the Constitution. The tax is supposed to be equal across the board; not as close as they can get…it must be equal…and there is no way to equalize property taxation!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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