The Ag/Rural Department is responsible for administering special agricultural appraisals, appraising rural properties, and processing “change of use” properties. Change of use is also known as rollbacks. The areas of responsibility for this department include properties in rural ranchland, townsites (rural towns), and ranchettes (colonias).
The department currently has five staff members consisting of one supervisor and four appraisers. The staff’s assignment is to gather, record and maintain an accurate description of the property’s physical characteristics. All property is appraised at its fair market value as of January 1 st, except as otherwise allowed by federal or state law.
Property owners that apply, and if the property qualifies for agricultural productivity value, the property will be taxed on its productivity value instead of its market value. The District calculates the agricultural p roductivity value by following the Texas Property Tax Code, chapter 23, which establishes the procedure to utilize. The agricultural productivity value is a derivative on the income approach to value and the Texas Comptroller’s office publishes annually the cap rate to be used. A five year average of the “net to land” income is divided by the published cap rate to set the productivity value for each property class, annually.