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Since 1981 Travis Central Appraisal District has had one primary mission, to provide accurate appraisal of all property in Travis County at one hundred percent market value, equally and uniformly, in a professional, ethical, economical and courteous manner, working to ensure that each taxpayer pays only their fair share of the property tax burden.
The Appraisal District’s primary responsibility is to develop an annual appraisal roll for use by taxing units in imposing ad valorem taxes on property in the district. TCAD is governed by the Board of Directors, who is primarily responsible for the hiring of the Chief Appraiser as well as approving the annual budget.
A Brief History
Prior to 1979 the Texas Constitution required all property owners to pay property taxes. Exemptions were few and with the exceptions of Government property, along with that belonging to churches, schools and other properties exempted by federal law, most other owners were taxed on property including automobiles, household furniture, stocks, bonds and cash in the bank. Each tax agency in Texas could have its own tax office if desired and tax offices proliferated with most cities, school districts and numerous special districts establishing independent offices. Accordingly, Texas had over 3,000 separate tax offices, each following its own standards and local practices. Properties were often listed on different taxing entities rolls at dramatically different appraised values and assessment ratios were also applied with no uniformity between entities.
In 1979 the 66th Texas Legislature, reacting to a chronic and growing problem of inequitable and unfair taxation, passed new legislation in Senate Bill 621 requiring that a centralized agency be established in each county for the purpose of appraising property for ad valorem tax purposes. These agencies, called “Central Appraisal Districts” consolidated the appraisal function of all taxing units into one office in each county and were organized to ensure that property taxation was fair and equitable as well as accurate. The Central Appraisal District (CAD) appraises each property in the county. Individual taxing units use those values to calculate tax liabilities in their jurisdiction. Each CAD is headed by a chief appraiser who manages staff, prepares budgets, administers applications for exemptions and oversees the day-to-day district operations. The Tax Code prescribes appraisal standards and appeal procedures and ensures regular review of each appraisal district by a state agency.
Travis Central Appraisal District - 1989
Today the Travis Central Appraisal District appraises property in all of Travis County. We cover an area of approximately 873 square miles and are responsible for almost 380,000 tax accounts.
Each year our agency is audited, including both our financial operation and our appraisal effort. Independent auditors conduct the financial audit. The Comptroller's Property Tax Assistance Division conducts a performance audit of our appraisal effort to determine the accuracy and equity of that effort.
HB3693 Utility Consumption
TCAD 2012 Annual Report
Travis Central Appraisal District FY 2011 CAFR
TCAD 2012 Adopted Budget
TCAD 2013 Adopted Budget