Property Tax Values
The El Paso City Council has no authority to set the tax value of any property in the city. Neither does the El Paso County Commissioner's Court, the El Paso ISD, the Ysleta ISD, other independent school districts, Thomason Hospital or the El Paso Community College. Property tax values are set by the El Paso Central Appraisal District which is required by the State of Texas to set values as close to 100% of market value as possible. Each taxing entity sets the tax rate necessary to support the services it provides.
Annually each taxing entity sets its own tax rate while taking into account how much tax values have changed. It can adjust its existing tax rate upward or downward to offset overall value changes. In the FY2004-05 budget the City reduced its tax rate because of increased values. In the FY2005-06 budget the City reduced its operations and maintenance tax rate while holding its overall tax rate steady. This was necessary to pay for the increased debt costs of the 2000 and 2004 Bond Elections. The City will once again consider reducing its tax rate as part of the deliberations on the FY2006-07 Budget.
While the City Council is concerned about property tax levels in El Paso, its ability to control those levels is limited. City taxes amount to only about one/fifth of the property taxes paid by taxpayers. And this percentage has decreased in the last couple of years. Almost 80% of the property taxes collected from City of El Paso taxpayers now go to school districts, El Paso County, Thomason Hospital, and the Community College.
So if you are concerned that the value of your property is set too high, then your appeal is to the Central Appraisal District. If however, your concern is that property taxes are too high, then you should participate in the public hearings that each taxing entity will hold as part of their budget process.
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