February 15, 2010-This article may be a little dry for some folks, but it covers a very important topic to all of us – property taxes, appraised value and exemptions. At the February School Board meeting, San Saba ISD approved action for San Saba CAD, Director, Randy Henderson to "protest" the state’s property value for San Saba ISD taxing purposes. Mr. Henderson’s local appraised value is required by state law to be within 95% of the state of Texas’ appraised value or the State value becomes the standard. Mr. Henderson is acting on behalf of San Saba ISD to protest this action.
This brings me to an overview of how taxpayers can reduce their property tax bills by filing for homestead exemptions. Sometimes it helps to review the basics of all of this. I found a very good article in the Llano Newspaper that I will use as a reference and the Texas Comptroller’s Property Tax Guide. Homeowners can reduce their property tax bills by filing a one-time application for homestead exemptions. These exemptions reduce the appraised value of the home. Property owners who have not received the general homestead exemption on their homes in which they were living on January 1, 2010 and those who become totally disabled or turn 65, must apply this year to receive their exemptions for 2010. For the general homestead exemptions, homeowners must own and live in their homes on January 1, 2010. Homeowners 65 years of age and older and those who become disabled don’t need to own their homes on January 1 to qualify for the age 65 and older or disabled homestead exemptions. State law provides that they may apply as soon as they turn 65 or become disabled, own the home and live in the home as their principal residence.
Texas law provides several types of exemptions for homeowners. For school tax purposes, all homeowners may receive a $15,000 general homestead exemption and homeowners 65 and older or disabled receive an additional $10,000 exemption. The school tax exemption for those homeowners 65 and older ore disabled provides a special property tax ceiling for school taxes. While the market value of an elderly or disabled person’s home may fluctuate with the market, the school taxes cannot increase above the tax amount in the first year that person qualified for the homestead for the age 65 and older for disabled exemption. The ceiling can increase if the owner adds an improvement other than normal maintenance or repair. When the owner adds a new improvement, the new improvement is taxed at its current value and the current tax rates.
Taxes and how they fund schools is a complicated structure. Taxes alone do not complete the finance picture for schools. However, the calculation of the local tax base and the revenue generated locally certainly impacts the state dollar that is flowed to the District.
Please visit www.san-saba.net to view events and find information you need to know about SSISD. If you have any question about this article or any other question about school happenings please contact me at 325/372-3144 or email me at email@example.com . We are San Saba! We are together!