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Property tax values drop

This budget news is really really bad.

Thirty percent of Harris County homes declined in market value this year, as the area’s overall tax base dropped for the first time in at least two decades, officials announced Thursday.

The reduced tax revenue will likely require substantial budget cuts for the 600 taxing entities in the county, including cities, school districts, community colleges and municipal utility districts.

Harris County tax rolls, buffeted by residential foreclosures and business failures, are expected to decrease more than $11 billion for 2010. The overall decline represents a drop of more than 4 percent from last year.

Jim Robinson, who heads the Harris County Appraisal District, said only 1 percent of residences, most of them in the Katy and Cypress-Fairbanks areas, rose in market value. Hardest hit were homes worth more than $1 million and those worth between $80,000 and $150,000.

[…]

By the appraisal district’s calculations, the 2010 tax base for the Houston Independent School District is expected to drop by slightly more than 4 percent. School district spokesman Norm Uhl said the loss in revenue will be made up by the state.

The city of Houston’s tax base should shrink by about 5 percent.

City Controller Ronald Green said the tax base decline likely will result in a budget shortfall of at least $32 million — on top of the $100 million gap the city already expects.

I don’t even know what to say. If you thought last year was bad, it’s about to get a lot worse.

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3 Comments

  1. John says:

    When will the Mayor offer a real set of cutbacks (I know it will be tough but she has to do it). The fact is HPD’s budget is nearly 1/3 of the total and real changes need to be made. If she does nothing of significance then Bill King will have an easy victory next year

  2. Robert Kane says:

    Look at all my previous posts… I keep saying it’s going to be worse than they are saying. Selling the Lakewood Church is only one of the things I’m sure you will see the city HAVING to do to help make ends meet.

    Kind of like when money is really tight in a family, they might think about a garage sale.

    All I know is watch how much the new chief will have to step up “enforcement” (revenue generating tickets) so watch your speed, keep your seatbelt fastened, make sure you have insurance, car registered headlights work, etc…. it’s going to get ugly.

    Unless the city can find a way to put off paying the bonds they have borrowed to pay the pension shortfalls (like borrow more) it has been like we have been using our credit cards to pay our bills or getting a home equity loan to pay off the bills then using the equity money to buy more stuff and now having twice the debt….things are going to be very ugly by 2021.

    Just look at the condition of many of Houston’s streets… they are getting worse and not better, where is that money coming from? Like having cavities, not going to the dentist or at this point not even brushing.

    Like I said before, I’m not all gloom and doom… just realistic.

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