County Assessment District Defers Property Tax Audit Ruling | New

Due to complaints from the public about the land values ​​placed on their properties, Victoria’s Central Valuation District met on Wednesday to discuss whether to carry out an audit.

“If it were up to me, I wouldn’t raise taxes,” said John Haliburton, chief assessor and operations manager at the Victoria County Assessment District. “It’s not up to me.”

Speaking to the district, Victoria Mayor Jeff Bauknight told district members there needed to be an audit to see if prices were where they should be. The city has already adopted a recommendation for the use of an independent auditor.

“Do this in an affirmative vote for the taxpayer,” Bauknight said. He added that the evaluator’s office was severely understaffed, with only five evaluators.

As a general rule, all Texas properties must be taxed at their market value as of January 1 of the tax year. The County Assessment District uses a mass appraisal technique for homes and many small business properties.

This would be an audit by the International Association of Evaluation Officers, a non-profit, educational and research association. It is a professional organization made up of government assessment officers and others interested in property tax administration. The IAAO was founded in 1934 and today has more than 8,500 members worldwide from government, business and academic communities.

Haliburton said he currently has neither the time nor the people to allocate to this project because a certified public accountant performs a financial audit of the city every year. The state comptroller evaluates each district every two years.

Because some of the district members wanted more information about what was at issue, they delayed action on the matter Wednesday afternoon, deciding instead to table it for a later meeting.

“It’s a situation that requires a lot of work to get everything ready,” Haliburton told district members.

“This unprecedented rise in values ​​is not just in Victoria. It’s all over Texas,” Haliburton said. “We want to do it right, and our job is to get the right value.”

A lifelong journalist, George loves ’60s musclecars and guns.

Penny D. Jackson