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Truth-In-Taxation Worksheets

5-YEAR HISTORY

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  • Truth-in-taxation requires most taxing units to calculate two rates after receiving a certified appraisal roll from the chief appraiser - the effective tax rate and the rollback tax rate. 8 The type of taxing unit determines which truth-in-taxation steps apply.

    Effective Tax Rate

    The effective tax rate enables the public to evaluate the relationship between taxes for the prior year and for the current year, based on a tax rate that would produce the same amount of taxes if applied to the same properties taxed in both years. 9

    Although the actual calculation can become more complicated, a taxing unit's effective tax rate is a calculated rate generally equal to the last year's taxes divided by the current taxable value of properties that were also on the tax roll last year. 10 The resulting tax rate, used for comparison only, shows the relation between the last year's revenue and the current year's values.

    Rollback Tax Rate

    The rollback tax rate is a calculated maximum rate allowed by law without voter approval. 11 Most taxing units calculate a rollback tax rate that divides the overall property taxes into two categories - M&O and debt service. 12

    With the exception of school districts, the rollback tax rate provides the taxing unit with about the same amount of tax revenue it spent the previous year for day-to-day operations, plus an extra eight percent increase for operations and sufficient funds to pay debts in the coming year. 13

    School districts voter-approval rate is equal to the current year's state compression percentage plus the greater of the previous year's M&O less $1.00 plus the district enrichment rate or four cents per $100 of taxable value. They then add the debt rate to get the final voter-approval tax rate. 14 To calculate the effective M&O rate, school districts should consult the Texas Education Agency.

    For all taxing units, the debt rate portion of the rollback tax rate is the current year's debt payments divided by the current year's property values. 15 The debt rate may rise as high as necessary to cover debt expenses.

    • 8Tex. Tax Code § 26.04(c)
    • 9Tex. Tax Code § 26.05(a)(2)
    • 10Tex. Tax Code § 26.04(c)(1)
    • 11Tex. Tax Code §§ 26.07(a) and 26.08(a) and Tex. Water Code § 49.236(d)
    • 12Tex. Tax Code § 26.04(c)(2)
    • 13Tex. Tax Code § 26.04(c)(2)
    • 14Tex. Tax Code § 26.08(n)
    • 15Tex. Tax Code § 26.012(4)
    Source: https://comptroller.texas.gov/taxes/property-tax/truth-in-taxation/index.php
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