The 2019 legislative session brought changes that will affect the Henderson County Appraisal District, Chief Appraiser Bill Jackson said.

"House Bill 1743 is interesting, because it reduces the number of rollback years when you take property from agriculture use to non-ag use," Jackson said.

Previously the district would re-assess for five years and the property owner would have to pay the difference between market value and ag value. The property owner is also required to pay 5 % interest on the property under the new law as opposed to the 7 % currently charged.

"Now, instead of going back five years, we can only go back three years," Jackson said. "It's probably a good deal because it kind of promotes building of commercial property."

The bill goes into effect Sept. 1.

Jackson said another piece of legislation that appears to be an improvement is HB 639.

"In the past, land that was secured by a home equity loan was not eligible for an ag exemption," Jackson said. "Now, it can receive that exemption."

HB 1802 extends the deadline by which a property owner can file for binding arbitration appealing an order by the Appraisal Review Board.

"That went into effect on May 17 of this year," Jackson said. "It extends the deadline from 45 to 60 days."

HB 1060 resulted in a minor change. The property owner can now request a decision by the ARB be sent via e-mail.

Jackson said HB2 and HB3 brought significant changes to the taxing process.

In HB2 property taxes are limited to a 3.5 % increase for counties and cities unless the voters approve an increase. For schools, the maintenance and operations increase is limited to 2.5 %.

HB 3 is lengthy and complicated. I urge readers to go to the Texas Education Association website.