2002 Property Value Study
Preliminary Value Findings Exceed $1 Trillion
- In this issue:
- Comptroller's Report
- $16.3 Billion in Local School Taxes
- 2002 School Tax Rates and Taxes
(Note: The following article discusses the increase in school district values from the Comptroller’s final 2001 property value study to the preliminary 2002 study, based on information reported by Texas school districts. The Comptroller’s study determines the taxable wealth of each school district for state aid to local districts. These values may be different from local tax roll values.)
Texas school districts’ preliminary taxable property values totaled more than $1 trillion in 2002, an increase of more than 6 percent or roughly $62 billion more taxable value than in 2001. Independent school district (ISD) property values are up for the 10th year in a row, based on numbers from the Comptroller’s property value study (PVS). School property values have continued to rise since the 1992 study findings.
State Comptroller Carole Keeton Strayhorn certified the preliminary determination of school property values — based on the appraisal date of January 1, 2002 — to Education Commissioner Felipe Alanis on January 31, 2003.
The Education Code requires the Texas Education Agency to use the Comptroller’s annual estimates of individual school district taxable wealth to determine state aid payments. Copies of the Comptroller’s findings may be obtained by ordering the agency’s 2002 Preliminary Report of School and Appraisal Districts’ Property Value Study. The Comptroller will automatically send a copy of the preliminary report to each county appraisal district, school district, county tax office and certain taxpayers.
For questions about the preliminary PVS results, send an e-mail to the Property Tax Division at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-800-252-9121, ext. 5-9839. In Austin, call (512) 305-9999.
School districts, appraisal districts and some taxpayers (with significant property in the study) had until March 12 to appeal the study’s preliminary findings. Final taxable values, which are certified on or before July 1, 2003, may be less than those listed in the preliminary study because of appeals and corrections filed with the Comptroller’s Property Tax Division (PTD).Local values
The Comptroller certified the school district’s local tax roll values in 826 school districts. (While there are 1,033 school districts, the certification is for 1,052 districts because some school districts’ values are divided among more than one appraisal district.) These districts reported local property values that fell within the Comptroller’s 5-percent margin of error. They accounted for about $884 billion in taxable value, or about 86 percent of the total taxable value in Texas.
In the remaining 226 districts, where local tax roll values did not meet the agency’s criteria (5-percent margin of error), the Comptroller certified the determination of those districts’ values at more than $138 billion.
For tax year 2002, taxable values increased in about 78 percent — or 819 — of the school districts, with an average increase in value of more than 11 percent. In comparison, 969 school districts had an average increase in value of more than 14 percent in tax year 2001.
About 34 percent of the school districts — or 354 — had property values increase more than 10 percent from last year. Of these 354 districts, 87 districts saw property values increase more than 20 percent. Nine districts had values increase more than 50 percent. The largest percentage increase in value, mainly for mineral production, was 398 percent in Mirando City ISD in Webb County. (In 2001, Marion ISD in Guadalupe County had a 163-percent value increase, with the completion of a gas-powered electrical generation plant.)
Other school districts with percentage increases exceeding 60 percent from 2001 to 2002 included: Trent ISD (Taylor County), 184 percent; Deweyville ISD (Newton County), 73 percent; Ponder ISD (Denton County), 67 percent; and Meyersville ISD (Dewitt County), 60 percent.
Values dropped in 233 districts by an average of less than 7 percent from 2001 to 2002. In the preceding study, values declined by an average of less than 5 percent in 83 school districts.
Only 51 school districts saw property values decrease more than 10 percent from last year. Nine of these 51 districts experienced more than a 20-percent loss in property value.
Largest school districts
Of the state’s 50 largest school districts in taxable wealth, all but one ISD saw increases in their taxable values. Houston ISD, the state’s largest district with taxable wealth of more than $68.5 billion, had property values increase almost 4 percent from 2001. Dallas ISD, the second largest district, totaled $58 billion in property value, about 3 percent more than last year’s tax base.
For a second year in a row, the largest percentage increase in taxable value was in Frisco ISD in Collin County, with a 25-percent increase. (In the 2001 study, Frisco ISD increased 31 percent.) Frisco ISD’s tax base grew from $4.5 to $5.6 billion.
Other school districts with increases at or exceeding 20 percent in the 50 largest districts included Leander ISD in Williamson County, at 22.5 percent, and Keller ISD in Tarrant County, at 20 percent.
Deer Park ISD in Harris County was the only ISD of the 50 largest ISDs to lose taxable property value from 2001 to 2002, from $6.9 to $6.5 billion.
The 10 largest school districts in taxable wealth account for about 29 percent of all the state’s property value. These 10 districts in order of value are: Houston, Dallas, Austin, Plano, Cypress-Fairbanks, Arlington, Richardson, Northside, Fort Worth and North East ISDs. (North East and Northside ISDs are both in Bexar County.)
According to preliminary study results, school districts’ exemptions and abatements increased more than 5 percent from the final 2001 study to the 2001 preliminary study. The total 2002 amount of almost $145 billion was more than $7 billion more than in 2001.
Homestead exemptions accounted for about 87 percent of all exemptions. Those exemptions include the state mandated $15,000 exemption for general homeowners, the state-mandated $10,000 exemption for disabled or elderly homeowners, the school tax ceiling (or freeze) for over-65 homeowners, the capped value on homesteads and the deferred homestead payments.
Government Code Section 403.302 specifies the exemptions and productivity value loss for special appraisals that the Comptroller deducts from market value to determine the taxable value of property in school districts.
The preliminary 2002 study, before exemptions, revealed an increase of almost 11 percent in the value of single-family residences, following an increase of almost 12 percent in 2001. This category is the largest in appraised value, representing 47 percent of the total school district appraised values. Multi-family residences values increased 6 percent in 2002, following more than an 10-percent increase in 2001.
Changes in business properties’ values varied, depending on the type. Commercial real property increased less than 4 percent, following an increase of more than 8 percent from last year. Industrial real property saw about the same values, with less than a 1-percent increase; the category's 2001 values increased almost 13 percent.
Industrial personal and commercial personal properties took different directions. Industrial personal dropped 3 percent (compared to a 14-percent gain in 2001). Commercial personal stayed almost flat, with less than a 1-percent increase (compared to more than 8 percent in 2001).
Utilities increased almost 5 percent in value from 2001 to 2002, after decreasing about 4 percent in 2001.
Oil, gas and minerals have seen both ups and downs in recent years. With double digit increases the last two years (at 14 and 56 percent), this category dropped almost 8 percent in value.
Residential inventory, that is residential property held for sale by the developer, experienced a second year of increase in value by more than 22 percent. The 2001 study found an increase of 56 percent.
Special inventory is inventory value of motor vehicle, boat, heavy equipment and manufactured housing dealers required to report special reports with appraisal districts and county tax offices; it increased about 10 percent, after a 30-percent increase in 2001.
Category N, intangible personal and uncertified property, included miscellaneous properties listed on the local tax rolls but not certified by local appraisal review boards at reporting time. With updated information during the appeals process, Comptroller staff will distribute the certified values among other property categories.