What does this mean to a Texas Landowner?
First one has to be aware of how land is assessed for property taxes. In the state of Texas when you buy rural land there are several property tax assessment valuations to look for. One is the “ag exemption” not really an exemption but a tax valuation. A property that uses “ag” as a valuation must qualify the land by using livestock or crops or hay production or wildlife management use. There are many more qualifying methods.
There are several components that make up your property taxes on rural property (provided the property has acreage associated with it). You’re taxed for any improvements (homes, roads etc.) and then the acreage will have a tax value for a particular agricultural use (i.e. livestock, haying and cropland, wildlife management use, etc.)
The following information is contained in the Texas Property Tax Code.
§ 23.522 Temporary Cessation of Agricultural Use During Drought
Text of section effective Jan. 1, 2010
The eligibility of land for appraisal under this subchapter does not end because the land ceases to be devoted principally to agricultural use to the degree of intensity generally accepted in the area if:
(1) a drought declared by the governor creates an agricultural necessity to extend the normal time the land remains out of agricultural production; and
(2) the owner of the land intends that the use of the land in that manner and to that degree of intensity be resumed when the declared drought ceases.
I, RICK PERRY, Governor of the State of Texas, issued an Emergency Disaster Proclamation on July 5, 2011, certifying that exceptional drought conditions posed a threat of imminent disaster in specified counties in Texas.
WHEREAS, record high temperatures, preceded by significantly low rainfall, have resulted in declining reservoir and aquifer levels, threatening water supplies and delivery systems in many parts of the state; and
WHEREAS, these exceptional drought conditions have reached historic levels and continue to pose an imminent threat to public health, property and the economy; and
WHEREAS, this state of disaster includes the counties of AAndrews, Archer, Armstrong, Bailey, Bandera, Baylor, Bexar, Blanco, Borden, Briscoe, Brooks, Brown, Burnet, Callahan, Cameron, Carson, Castro, Childress, Clay, Cochran, Coke, Coleman, Collingsworth, Comal, Concho, Cooke, Coryell, Cottle, Crockett, Crosby, Culberson, Dallam, Dawson, Deaf Smith, Dickens, Dimmit, Donley, Duval, Eastland, Ector, Edwards, El Paso, Fannin, Fisher, Floyd, Foard, Frio, Gaines, Garza, Gillespie, Glasscock, Gray, Grayson, Hale, Hall, Hansford, Hardeman, Hartley, Haskell, Hemphill, Hidalgo, Hockley, Howard, Hudspeth, Hutchinson, Irion, Jeff Davis, Jim Hogg, Jim Wells, Jones, Kendall, Kenedy, Kent, Kerr, Kimble, King, Kinney, Kleberg, Knox, Lamb, Lee, Lipscomb, Llano, Lubbock, L5mn, Martin, Mason, Maverick, McCulloch, Medina, Menard, Midland, Mitchell, Montague, Moore, Motley, Nolan, Nueces, Ochiltree, Oldham, Parmer, Potter, Presidio, Randall, Reagan, Real, Roberts, Runnels, San Patricio, San Saba, Schleicher, Scurry, Shackelford, Sherman, Starr, Stephens, Sterling, Stonewall, Sutton, Swisher, Taylor, Terry, Throckmorton, Tom Green, Travis, Upton, Uvalde, Val Verde, ‘Webb, ‘Wheeler, ‘Wichita, Wilbarger, Willacy, Williamson, Wise, Yoakum, Zapata and Zavala.
THEREFORE, in accordance with the authority vested in me by Section 418.014 of the Texas Government Code, I do hereby renew the disaster proclamation and direct that all necessary measures, both public and private as authorized under Section 418.017 of the code, be implemented to meet that threat.
As provided in Section 418.016 of the code, all rules and regulations that may inhibit or prevent prompt response to this threat are suspended for the duration of the state of disaster.
In accordance with the statutory requirements, copies of this proclamation shall be filedwith the applicable authorities.
IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have hereunto signed my name and have officially caused the Seal of State to be affixed at my Office in the City of Austin, Texas, this the 5th day of October, 2012.