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PROTEST YOUR VALUE MATERIALS AND INFORMATION
The Galveston CAD will be mailing 2020 appraisal notices April 20th and this year will be very different from other years.  According to its website, GCAD is closed and will be unable to provide informal appraisal meetings in person due to the coronavirus.  It is encouraging property owners to contact them via phone, mail or email.
 
Current CDC guidance requests gatherings of 10 or more persons to cease.  Although updates are expected, all Effectively Protest Your Property Value classes are suspended until further notice.  Please watch this website, newspapers and Facebook (Cheryl Johnson/Galveston County Tax Office) for updates. 
 
In an attempt to provide assistance, the class booklet has been expanded and is included below along with the Protest Worksheets.  There have been many additions to the booklet and spreadsheets this year due to changes in the law as well as special sections on the coronavirus and economic impact of the pandemic for the future. 
 
 
 
ATTORNEY GENERAL OF TEXAS COMPLAINT FORM AND LINK:
Due to a high number of consumer complaints regarding contractor scams throughout the County, I have updated the Attorney General Complaint Form below.  You may also file a complaint online at the link below: 
 
2020 Temporary Disaster Exemption Deadlines
 
The Texas Tax Code was amended during the last legislative session as a result of a voter approved amendment to the Texas Constitution, specifically Proposition 3 that provided for a temporary exemption from taxation of a portion of the value.  The change in statute provides for a temporary exemption for property owners who are victims of natural disasters.  The exemption is automatic for all governments adopting a tax rate on or after any disaster declaration.  All others must adopt the exemption. 
 
 
 
2020 - Volunteer Deputy Registrar December Class Cancelled
 
The Galveston County Tax Office has been providing mandatory training each month since 2011 for those interested in serving as Volunteer Deputy Registrars (VDRs).  VDRs work in partnership with County Voter Registrars registering citizens to vote.  Their certification expires in December of even numbered years thus current VDR terms will expire December 31, 2020.   
 
 
 
2020 - Are you Entitled to a Disaster Exemption for 2020
 
 
The Tax Code Section 11.35 allows a property that is damaged at least 15% and up to 100% in a Governor declared disaster area to receive a temporary exemption of a portion of the appraised value of the property. A property owner must apply for the exemption no later than 105 days after the governor declares a disaster area (Hurricane Laura declaration was 8.23.30 with an application deadline of 12.7.2020 and TS Beta declaration was 9.21.2020 with a 1.4.2021 deadline).
 
 
 
 
2020 - Deadline for First Half of Split Payment!
 
 
Galveston County property owners wishing to take advantage of the split/half payment option have until November 30th to make the first payment with the second half due June 30, 2021. All but two GCTO government partners (City of Dickinson and Dickinson ISD) participate in this payment option thus that portion of the taxes will be due in full by February 1st unless taking advance of disaster installments, also available this year, with four equal installments due every other month beginning in January.
 
 
 
 
 
 
2020 - Last Day to Vote for the November Election 
 
October 5th is the last day to register to vote or update address information for the November 3rd election.   Voter registration applications are available at all GCTO locations or online at www.galcotax.com under the Voter Registration Information link.  Contact the Voter Registration Department toll free at 1-888-976-2280 and an application can be emailed or mailed to you.
 
This is the largest election in our history with Federal, State, County and dozens of local races – many that were delayed due to COVID19 - in addition to bond and other elections that will directly impact your finances.   To view a sample ballot, visit www.galvestonvotes.org at the end of September simply by typing in your precinct number.  Then, do your homework and VOTE
 
   
2020 - E-Statements Save You Money!
 
If you are truly interested in lowering the cost of government, County Tax Assessor Collector Cheryl Johnson encourages you to put your money where your mouth is and sign up no later than September 15th to receive your 2020 tax statement via email.  Log on to your property tax account online at www.galcotax.com and scroll down to Register to Receive Electronic Tax Statements. 
 
Read more...
 
 
2020 - County Tax Office Establishes New Partnership
 
 
The Galveston County Tax Office is constantly examining ways to reduce cost while expanding services to its customers – both citizens and governments.  Consolidation of services such as property tax assessment and collections has the potential of saving local governments thousands of dollars in collection costs with the basic County fee far less than the price of a single stamp ($0.21 per property).  Property owners benefit from the convenience of a single payment and receiving services at multiple locations.
 
We are proud to announce the newest GCTO property tax assessment and collection customer is Galveston County Municipal Utility District #44 which encompasses the Village at Tuscan Lakes and Tuscan Lakes.  In 2014, after nine years of operation, a resident of the community first joined the Board of Directors.  This year, 2020, is the first time that all directors of the District reside within its boundaries.
 
 
 
 
2020 - Tax Protest Class Scheduled
 
The Coronavirus caused all previously scheduled Effectively Protest Your Property Value classes to be cancelled.  The June 9th class – previously scheduled to be held at the Mid County Annex in Texas City will now be held at the College of the Mainland Conference Center on the Monticello side of the campus.  Class is scheduled from 6 pm to 8 pm and will be provided by Galveston County Tax Assessor Collector Cheryl E. Johnson.
 
This class will focus on the Appraisal Review Board (ARB) or formal protest process.  Don’t go to the ARB hearing unprepared!  Attend this important class first!
 
 
 
2020 - Tax Payment Deadlines
 
The last day for disaster, senior, disabled person and disabled veteran third quarter installment payments for 2019 property taxes is June 1st.  The second half of the split or half payment installment is due June 30th. 
 
Those having difficulty paying 2019 property taxes or who have missed an installment payment will receive a delinquent notice this month.  Tax Assessor/Collector Cheryl E. Johnson urges property owners to pay the delinquent taxes no later than June 30th in order to avoid delinquent attorney fees from being added to unpaid balances.  Those unable to pay their entire tax bill should contact the Property Tax Department (409-766-2481) in order to set up a payment agreement.  Setting up a payment agreement by the end of June will prevent the attorney fees from being added to unpaid balances.  Property Tax Specialists are available in the Galveston Branch on the first floor of the County Courthouse, 722 Moody in Galveston between 8 am and 5 pm Monday through Friday.  Agreements can be established at any Tax Office branch or via email or fax.
 
 
2020 - Tax & Voter Registration Deadlines Approaching
 
Don’t miss the following important property tax and voter registration deadlines as well as the 2020 Effectively Protest Your Property Value class schedule.  Mark your calendars!
 
May 15th          Deadline to call to schedule protest meeting, mail protest form or file online
                          protest at County Appraisal District
 
June 1st            Third installment deadline for 2019 property taxes for seniors, disabled persons, disabled vets, surviving spouses of disabled vets and those taking advantage of disaster installments
  
Tax payments may be mailed to GCTO, PO Box 1169, Galveston, Texas 77553, left in GCTO drop boxes (outside each full time branch location) or paid online (www.galcotax.com) via electronic check ($1 fee) or credit card (2.5% merchant fee).   Credit card telephone payments can be made by calling 1-866-865-1433 (English) or 1-866-865-1435 (Spanish). 
 
 
 
 
 
2020 - Unpaid 2019 Property Taxes?  We Can Help!
 
February delinquent notices will soon be arriving in area mailboxes.  Thanks to legislation passed several years ago, homeowners unable to pay in full may sign up for a low penalty payment agreement.  Recent legislation enabled qualified seniors, disabled persons, disabled vets, spouses of disabled vets and those still recovering from recent disasters to pay seven (7%) percent penalty and interest by February 28 in order to take advantage of the one-quarter installment payment option. 
 
 
2020 - Render with Caution But Render!
 
The property tax is more than 60 taxes, fees and assessments in Texas.  There are two types - real property taxes (land and improvements) and business personal property (BPP) taxes (those items used for the production of income in your business such as furniture, fixtures, inventory, equipment, motor vehicles, vessels, and aircraft).  These items are typically referred to as business personal property.  Pay either real or BPP taxes late (after January 31st) and incur egregious penalties and interest.  Fail to render (or report) your BPP value by April 1 and be hit by an additional 10% penalty on the entire amount due.
 
 
 
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