HB 1513

84(R) - 2015
House Agriculture & Livestock
House Agriculture & Livestock

Vote Recommendation

  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Negative
  • Neutral


Allen Fletcher

Bill Caption

Relating to the ad valorem taxation of qualified open-space land.

Fiscal Notes

Implementing provisions of the bill related to modifying the definition of agricultural use would create a cost to units of local government,and to the state through the operation of the school funding formula by reducing the number of acres required to qualify under the beekeeping land use. No information is available regarding the increased number of qualified acres or decreased taxable value that would be attributable to this provision; consequently the fiscal impact of the bill cannot be estimated. 

Bill Analysis

HB 1513, if passed, would modify the Tax Code (Section 23.51(2)) by expanding the range of tract size for open space land for ad valorem tax purposes. Currently land between five and fifty acres may be used for “agricultural use”. HB 1513 would expand this to land between two and fifty acres.

“Agricultural use” has the following technical definition in code: “cultivating the soil, producing crops for human food, animal feed, or planting seed or for the production of fibers; floriculture, viticulture, and horticulture; raising or keeping livestock; raising or keeping exotic animals for the production of human food or of fiber, leather, pelts, or other tangible products having a commercial value; planting cover crops or leaving land idle for the purpose of participating in a governmental program, provided the land is not used for residential purposes or a purpose inconsistent with agricultural use; and planting cover crops or leaving land idle in conjunction with normal crop or livestock rotation procedure” (Section 23.51).

Vote Recommendation Notes

By expanding the agricultural tax exemption, this bill would expand the preferential treatment of a certain type of property owners to the exclusion of other types of property owners. Additionally, this would increase the tax burden on non-exempt landowners and make it less likely that broad-based property tax relief may be realized for all land owners in the future. For that reason we oppose this legislation. 

Organizations Supporting

Texas Association of Builders
Texas Association of Realtors