Editor’s note: This is the fifth installment of an ongoing series on Texas property taxes.
This is one of a series of articles dealing with the Texas Property Tax, usually known as an “ad valorem tax” which in the Latin means “according to value.” A county appraisal district (sometimes referred to as a “central appraisal district”) is required to determine the value of all taxable property within its boundaries.
The last article discussed the role and qualifications of the members of the appraisal board of directors of an appraisal district. This article will discuss the role and qualifications of the chief appraiser. Subsequent articles will discuss the role and qualifications of members of the appraisal review board which is separate and distinct from the board of directors of an appraisal district.
The chief appraiser is the chief administrator of an appraisal district, and is appointed to serve at the pleasure of the board of directors. In order to serve as chief appraiser, a person must meet certain qualifications. The chief appraiser must meet one of certain professional qualifications such as (but not limited to) Registered Professional Appraiser or MAI from the Appraisal Institute. In addition, unless the chief appraiser is also the tax assessor or collector, any person serving as chief appraiser must complete a chief appraiser trainer program adopted under Texas state law. A chief appraiser must give written notice of eligibility to the Texas State Comptroller by January 1st of each year.
A person serving as chief appraiser cannot owe delinquent taxes and cannot serve if related to any person in the second degree of affinity or consanguinity to anyone who appraises property for compensation for use in proceedings in proceedings with the appraisal district.
There is a detailed “laundry list” of duties and responsibilities authorized for the chief appraiser, but suffice it to say, the duties and responsibilities fall into the following categories: perform duties assigned by the appraisal district board, employ and compensate personnel (with the exception of the general counsel), and, last, but most importantly, discover, list, review, and appraise all taxable property in the appraisal district using generally accepted appraisal techniques.
Banker Phares is a practicing attorney and founding member of the Estate Planning and Probate Law certification by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He is the John and Karen Mast Professor at SFA and teaches in the Department of Economics and Finance.