Teresa Terry explains the role of her position as Taxpayer Liaison Officer (TLO) for the Board of Directors of the Harris County Appraisal District. The TLO and her office are responsible for providing independent information and materials to assist property owners in understanding the appraisal process and protest procedures. The TLO also serves to help resolve misunderstandings between property owners and HCAD and has the ability to take concerns directly to the Board of Directors. (3:29 mins.)
Hello. I'm Teresa Terry, Taxpayer Liaison Officer for Harris County Appraisal District.
I work directly for the district's board of directors. Our board governs the appraisal district and appoints its chief appraiser. My office provides independent information and materials to assist you, the property owner, in understanding the appraisal process and protest procedures.
Appraisal district employees and the members of the Appraisal Review Board are dedicated to providing you the best experience possible by treating you professionally and with respect. However, even under the best of circumstances, parties will sometimes disagree.
I also am here to help resolve any disputes that may arise as a property owner goes through the appraisal process or the process of appealing district actions affecting their property.
Each month, I report to the board of directors on any complaints that have been brought to my attention. I will review the facts associated with the complaint and make every effort to resolve it to the satisfaction of the property owner. By law, I must report the nature of the complaint, attempts to reach a resolution and the status of the resolution. So in essence, I work for you.
The local property tax is the source for revenues that fund governmental offices in Harris County. As a property owner, you share in this funding based on the assessment of your taxable property.
The appraisal district’s job is to appraise the value of all property in the county as accurately as possible so that you will be taxed fairly. Texas law guarantees you the right to protest that value if you think it’s too high.
There are a number of options open to you if you do not think your appraisal is accurate. You can use the iFile and iSettle programs that can help streamline your appeal and help you avoid a trip to the appraisal district building. You can also meet with one of our appraisers in an informal meeting to discuss your appraised value, or appear before the Appraisal Review Board in a formal hearing to present your appeal.
Complaints referred to me are generally from property owners who feel that they did not receive the answer they wanted or result they were expecting. Sometimes this results from a misunderstanding of the process or presentation of incomplete or incorrect information. Other times, it can be the result of a mistake or oversight on our part.
We are guided by state law and property tax regulations. These laws and regulations do not always allow us the flexibility of reaching your desired outcome or giving you the answer that you would prefer.
Many times a dispute can be resolved simply by explaining the process or procedure to the property owner so that they understand what we can and cannot do.
We investigate every complaint to determine what the next step is. If we find that a mistake was made, then we will work toward a favorable resolution to the maximum extent permitted by law.
I can assure you that, in every case, you can feel certain that all issues brought to the attention of this office are thoroughly reviewed by an independent officer who reports only to the board of directors.
A short video is available on our web site if you are interested in learning more about theprograms.
Thank you very much for listening.