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Important Change for Motor Vehicle Renewals
 
Beginning September 1, 2016, the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) will send a notification along with motor vehicle renewal notices to those individuals who are delinquent in child support payments (six months or more) stating that their vehicle registration is blocked through the Department of Motor Vehicles Registration and Titling system.  This policy will apply to vehicle registrations due December, 2016 forward.
 
The Galveston County Tax Office will be unable to process motor vehicle renewals which have the block in place until such time it is removed by the Attorney General’s office. 
 
 
2016 – Deadlines & Last Time
 
Seniors, disabled persons and veterans and those making disaster installments have until Monday, August 1st to make the final (fourth) installment payment on property taxes.  Save a stamp and go online to www.galcotax.com to pay by electronic check ($1 fee) or credit card (2.5% bank fee).  Save the cost of the stamp and the fees and pay in person Monday-Friday from 8 am to 5 pm at any full time office location (Galveston, League City, Santa Fe and Texas City) or drop payment in the yellow drop boxes outside of each office.  A black drop box is located at the Friendswood City Hall satellite location (open Thursday and Friday 8 am to 5 pm, closed from Noon to 1 pm for lunch).
 
August 11th is the last day to register to vote or update name and address information in time for the Friendswood Independent School District Tax Ratification Election that will be held September 10th.  TRE’s are required by Texas law when a school district proposes to impose a tax rate above the rollback tax rate.
 
Verify your voter registration status at www.votetexas.gov .  Click on Frequently Asked Questions and the Am I Registered link.  If you moved within the County, you may update addresses online.  Voter registration forms are available on the GCTO or SOS website.  Simply print, complete and mail or drop in a Tax Office drop box or at any branch office.  We will also mail an application to you upon request.
If you registered at the Department of Public Safety (DPS) office when renewing your driver’s license but did not receive the voter certificate, please call the Voter Registration Department at toll free 1-888-976-2280.  Online registration is not available in Texas through DPS or the SOS websites.
 
As a reminder, the final Sheriff Sale packed produced by the Tax Office has been published on the website.  The sale, held the first Tuesday of each month in the County Courthouse (722 Moody) at 10 am attracts investors across the county and region.  Production of the packet was a service performed by the Property Tax Department that enhanced the information provided by the Sheriff’s Department but became obsolete with the launching of the delinquent law firm’s interactive website that provides additional information.  The Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson site (taxsales.lgbs.com) includes sheriff sales and auctions across the country in addition to Galveston County.  “We will continue through the rest of the year to email the link to our distribution lists to remind customers of coming sales” stated Tax Assessor Collector Cheryl E. Johnson.
 
 
 
2016 – Special Alert by the County Tax Office
 
ALERT:  The Texas City/La Marque ISD consolidation may impact services in the County Tax Office this month!
 
June 30th marks certain deadlines important to many county property owners – the deadline for the final half of 2015 taxes and, for those struggling to pay, the deadline to establish a pay agreement and thus avoid costly attorney fees (up to 20%) that will be added July 1st!  Property owners living in La Marque ISD needing a payment agreement will need to contact the county’s delinquent law firm directly at 409-948-3401 as GCTO will not be negotiating any new agreements involving the school district.
 
 
2016 - Third Quarter Payment Due and Split Payment end of June
 
The last day for disaster, senior, disabled person and vet third quarter installment for 2015 property taxes is due by May 31st.  Also, the second half of the split or half payment installment is due June 30th.
 
 
 
2016 - Protest Your Value Class Schedule
 
For the 12th year, Cheryl E. Johnson will teach her award winning class “Effectively Protest Your Appraised Value.”  Learn techniques—not tricks—and gain an understanding of the Texas property tax process.  Dates and times are shown below.  Classes last about two hours.  All class materials will be posted on the GCTO website by mid-April.  Most important of all - don’t miss the May 31st deadline to schedule an appointment with a CAD appraiser!   
 
Date   Time       Location
5/3      6 pm       League City Council Chambers, 200 W. Walker, League City
5/5      6 pm       Learning Resource Center, Room L-131, COM, 1200 Amburn Road, Texas City
5/19    6 pm       Commissioners Courtroom, 722 Moody/21st Street, Galveston
5/21    10 am     AMOCO Federal Credit Union, 235 E. Parkwood Drive, Friendswood (REGISTRATION REQUIRED)
 
To download/view the 2016 Protest Worksheets your device must have Microsoft Excel installed. Internet Explorer browsers: Select 'Cancel' on security prompt to access file.
 
Click here to download the 2016 Protest Worksheets. Click here to download the 2016 Protest Handbook.
 
 
Tax Office branches are open 8 am to 5 pm Monday - Friday in Galveston, League City, Santa Fe and Texas City.  For directions or actual locations, please call (toll free)  1-877-766-2284.
 
2016 - Important County Tax Office Dates
 
The last day for disaster, senior, disabled person and vet second quarter payment is Thursday, March 31, 2016.  Payments may be mailed or left in GCTO drop boxes, paid online (www.galcotax.com) via electronic check ($1 bank fee) or credit card (2.5% merchant fee) or credit card via telephone (toll free) at 1-866-865-1433 (English) or 1-866-865-1435 (Spanish).
 
Tax Office branches are open 8 am to 5 pm Monday - Friday in Galveston, League City, Santa Fe and Texas City.  For directions or actual locations, please call (toll free)  1-877-766-2284.
 
Read more for other important dates... 
 
2016 - Information from the Galveston Central Appraisal District concerning the annexation of La Marque ISD into Texas City Independent School District effective July 1, 2016.
 
As you are likely aware, the Texas Education Agency has issued a directive annexing La Marque ISD into Texas City Independent School Districts effective July 1, 2016.  Staff and administration are working diligently to follow this directive in the most efficient manner possible to pursue the common vision and goal of providing a quality education for all children in the expanded TCISD.
 
Read more...  
 
2016 - New Online Tool for Sheriff Sale Information
 
Every month for more than 11 years, the County Tax Office has been preparing a comprehensive packet of information on properties offered at the Sheriff Sale.  The sale, held the first Tuesday of each month in the County Courthouse (722 Moody) at 10:00 am attracts investors from across the county and region.
 
The County delinquent law firm (Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson or LGBS) recently launched an interactive website (taxsales.lgbs.com) that includes sheriff sales and auctions from across the entire country.  The information included on the site provides a higher level of information about properties than made available in the past including a photograph of the actual parcel.
 
 
 
2015 - The 2016-2017 Voter Registration Certificates are in the Mail!
 
After months of stops and starts with the Secretary of State Texas Election Administration Management (TEAM) system upgrades, nearly 179,000 
voter certificates will soon arrive in Galveston County mailboxes.  The blue and white certificates will be valid from January 1, 2016 through
December 31, 2017.
 
The certificate may not be forwarded by the US Postal Service thus, if a voter moved since the December 2013 mail out without updating the
information with the Voter Registration Department or DPS, it will be returned to the County Tax Office.
 
 
2015 - Deadline approaches 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 have the first payment
postmarked in order to avoid penalty and interest on the second half which is due by June 30, 2016.  All but two GCTO government partners 
participate in the payment option (City of Dickinson and Dickinson ISD).
 
 
2015 - The 2015 Tax Statement Newsletter
 
This newsletter provides information for office contacts, branch locations, payment options for your property taxes and Property Tax Seminars, 
"Effectively Protest Your Appraised Value" provided by Cheryl E. Johnson.
 
 
2015 - Unclaimed Property Tax Refunds
 
According to a recent search of Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar's Unclaimed Property Website (ClaimItTexas.org), there are "...more
than 25 million properties...about $4 billion in missing money waiting to be claimed" and it is "never to late to make a claim".  With this Comptroller 
doing a bang up job of making it easier than ever to find lost items, Galveston County Tax Assessor Collector Cheryl E. Johnson decided to do 
something similar.
 
 
2015 - Tax Office Deadlines Loom
 
Are you 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 2015 tax statement via email.  Simply log on to your property tax account online at www.galcotax.com and scroll down to Register to Receive Electronic Tax Statements.
 
"This feature is especially beneficial for anyone who recently purchased a property or refinanced as lenders request statements midsummer so those who paid off a loan may not receive a statement without taking advantage of this option," stated Johnson.  "Each online statement saves over fifty cents and those cents add up to common sense!"
 
 
2015 - Tax Office Announces New Partnership
 
Galveston County Tax Assessor Collector Cheryl E. Johnson is pleased to announce its newest grocery partner, HEB Grocery Company, LP.  Residents can expect to see motor vehicle registration renewal services starting during the month of September at the Bay Colony, Friendswood, League City and Texas City stores.
 
Texas county tax assessor collectors have the ability to establish partnerships with a variety of individuals to expand availability of vehicle registration services to county residents. 
 
 
2015 - Texas Constitutional Election November 3rd
 
Voter turnout for Texas Constitutional Amendments is dismal and an election is right around the corner!  Remember that the Texas Constitution limits government so it is very important that Texans vote!  Heed the warning of Thomas Jefferson, "The government you elect is government you deserve" and vote! 
 
 
2015 - Final Quarter Installment Due July 31st
 
Seniors, disabled persons and veterans have until Friday, July 31st to make that final fourth installment payment on home property taxes.
 
 
2015 - Last Day to Split Pay & Last Call for Pay Agreements
 
Property owners that participated in the split or half payment option to pay 2014 taxes need to take note that the second and final payment is due (or must be postmarked) by June 30th to avoid costly penalties and interest.  If you are struggling to pay taxes on your property, you have until June 30th to apply for a monthly pay agreement.....
 
 
2015 - Seven Step Process Released by Public Demand
 
With nearly 100,000 property tax value increases across Galveston County and with the end of the Legislative Session around the corner with little hope for property tax reform, Galveston County Tax Assessor/Collector Cheryl E. Johnson has released a one page summary for property owners needing assistance in understanding the process and their recourse...
 
 
 
2015 - Taxed Into Awareness
 
Every year county appraisal districts mail notices of appraised value increases to hundreds of thousands of property owners across the State which prompts protests by unhappy taxpayers.  Nearly 100,000 notices were mailed in Galveston County last week and my phones lit up!  The people are not happy!
 
Me neither.  My value increased more than $100,000!  Over time, that will result in a $3,000 tax spread out over the next four years.
 
 
2015 - Half/Split Payment Coupons in the Mail
 
Property owners that participated in the split or half payment option to pay 2014 taxes will soon receive the second payment coupon letter.  The second and final payment must be postmarked by June 30, 2015 to avoid costly penalties and interest.
 
  
*** Click here to download the '2015 Protest Spreadsheet' for property taxes. Please note that you must have Microsoft Excel installed on your local computer to download and utilize the worksheet. If you are using Internet Explorer, click 'Open' and then 'Cancel' on the Windows Security screen to access file. Click here to report any issues.***
 
2015 - Protest Your Property Value Booklet
 
 
2015 - Important Year to Protest Your Property Value
 
The real estate market has been robust so expect notices from the county appraisal district that your property value is up over the last year.  Although many had hoped that the more than 100 tea party supported candidates who have taken office in the Texas Senate and House over the last three legislative sessions would finally act to lessen the pain of appraisal creep, a future with lower appraisal caps doesn't look good for the 84th Session.
 
 
2015 - How does the Two Steps One Sticker affect you?
 
Beginning March 1, the long awaited one-windshield-sticker program will be in place.  Gone are the days of a registration that expires one month and an inspection sticker another.  How will this affect you?
 
 
2015 - Deadline to Register for May Elections
 
Whether happy or unhappy, the way to impact your government is to vote!  Whether a Constitutional, primary, general or local election, voting is both a right and a duty and, with local May elections right around the corner, you have until April 9, 2015 to register or update your address.
 
 
2015 - The Real Property Tax Solution
 
It has been reported that commercial and industrial property values in Galveston County are below full market value as presented by the county appraisal district.  Likely but there is a reason for that and it is called mass appraisal.  It has been suggested that the best way to fix the low values is to require the sales prices be disclosed.  I could not disagree more.
 
 
2015 - Legislative Activities
 
With the deadline for filing bills behind us, I am pleased to report that your County Tax Office has 14 on the table with two others very similar to our proposals AND another 12 that support our policy positions (which by the way came from the voters and property owners of Galveston County).   I am pleased to report that the Lt. Governor is staying true to his promises and has insured tax relief is the first topic of the day with Senate Bill 1 already having a hearing in Senate Finance.
 
 
2015 - Online VDR Training for Renewing Volunteer Deputy Registrars Begins
 
Volunteer Deputy Registrars (VDR) are partners with County Voter Registrars, assisting citizens in registering to vote and educating them on the importance of voting.  A high level of ethical conduct is required to be a VDR as they are responsible for protecting applicants' right to vote.  At the end of the last VDR cycle, 275 volunteers were active in Galveston County.
 
 
2015 - Property Tax Deadline Looms!
 
The deadline to make property tax payments without penalty and interest is extended this year to February 2nd since January 31st falls on a weekend giving you just a couple of extra days to hold onto your money!  Traditionally two branches of the Galveston County Tax Office have extended hours on the last day to pay timely; however, this year hours will be extended in the Galveston and League City branches from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, January 30th.  All other offices (Santa Fe, Texas City and Friendswood Satellite offices) will be open normal operating hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. 
 
...Beginning in January, the Crystal Beach Satellite Office will be open 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (the third Tuesday).  Office is closed from Noon to 1:00 p.m. for lunch.
 
Click here to download the 2015 Protest Spreadsheet for property taxes. Please note that you must have Microsoft Excel installed on your local computer to download and utilize the worksheet. If you are using Internet Explorer, click 'Open' and then 'Cancel' on the Windows Security screen to access file.