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Relating to the qualification of land for appraisal for ad valorem tax purposes as agricultural land and the liability for the additional tax imposed on such land if the use of the land changes as a result of a condemnation.
Passage of the bill would provide that a portion of a parcel of land is not diverted to nonagricultural
use because the portion is subject to a rightofway that is less than 200 feet wide and that was taken
by condemnation if the remainder of the land qualifies. As a result, taxable property values could be
reduced and the related costs to the Foundation School Fund could be increased through the
operation of the school finance formulas.
SB 725 would stipulate that a portion of land is not diverted for non-agriculture use if it is a right of way less than 200 feet wide and was taken by condemnation and the remainder of the parcel of land qualifies for agricultural use.
If additional taxes are due because the land had been diverted to a nonagricultural use as a result of condemnation, SB 725 would make those additional taxes and interest the obligation of the condemning entity and not the property owner from whom the property was taken.
Texas Action supports SB 725 because it promotes property rights and individual liberty. A property owner should not be held responsible for property taxes on a portion of land that was condemned for a right of way when it would otherwise be in use as agricultural land.