Board of Directors
Eduardo Hernandez – Chairman
Maricela Escamilla – Vice-Chairman
Oralia Perez – Secretary
Cristina Lichtenberger – Member
Librada Vela – Member
Roberto Elizondo — Tax Assessor Collector
Raul Garcia – Chief Appraiser
Sherrie Elizondo – Assistant Chief Appraiser
General Policy & Policies for Public Access
Dear Property Owner:
We want you to be informed about the Duval County Appraisal District and your rights as a property owner. This page contains information on the board of directors’ policies and procedures for access to the board of directors, assistance for non-English speaking and disabled persons, and resolution of complaints to the board.
We trust that you will contact us or the chief appraiser if we can be of any assistance.
The appraisal district’s staff can answer any questions and serve your needs on most matters that do not require board attention. Our staff is trained to assist the public in matters related to the property tax profession and has materials that can assist the public.
Board Of Directors
The Duval County Appraisal District appraises taxable property for Duval County, Benavides ISD, Freer ISD, Premont ISD (portion in Duval County), Ramirez, ISD, San Diego ISD, City of San Diego, Duval County Groundwater District, and the Duval County Emergency District #1. The district appraises more than 32,000 property parcels annually. The district also administers exemptions and special appraisals, such as productivity valuation of qualified agricultural land, and determines the taxable situs of property. The chief executive officer of the appraisal district is the chief appraiser.
The governing body of the district is the appraisal district’s board of directors. The appraisal district also has an appraisal review board, which hears property owner protests regarding values and other related matters. The appraisal review board is appointed by the board of directors.
Board of Directors
A board of five directors governs the appraisal district. Board members select the chief appraiser, adopt the annual district budget, appoint the chair and secretary of the ARB, and ensure that the district follows policies and procedures required by law. The board does not appraise property or make decisions affecting the appraisal records. Members of the board may not discuss appraisal matters with the chief appraiser except in open meetings or other forums or in closed meetings held for the purpose of discussing pending litigation.
Public Access to the Board of Directors
It is the policy of the board of directors to provide the public with a reasonable opportunity to address the board on the subject of the policies and procedures of the appraisal district and on any issue under the board’s jurisdiction. Generally, the board’s statutory duties and jurisdiction concern:
- adopting the district’s annual operating budget;
- contracting for necessary services;
- hiring the chief appraiser and assigning responsibilities to the position;
- making general policy regarding the operation of the appraisal district
At each regularly scheduled meeting the chairman of the board of directors will announce that each person wishing to address the board on appraisal district policies, procedures, or issues may have time to speak allotted as follows:
- if the speaker’s intended comment relates to an identifiable item on the agenda, 5 minutes;
- if the speaker’s intended comment does not relate to an identifiable item on the agenda, three minutes if the speaker has not appeared before to make public comments in any of the three preceding meetings, or one minute if the speaker has appeared before in any of the three preceding meetings.
The chairman may expand the speaker’s time as needed if the expansion will not affect the ability of the board to complete its business and adjourn the meeting as a reasonable time. The board may refuse to hear any person who attempts to speak on a subject unrelated to the policies and procedures of the appraisal district or the appraisal review board and unrelated to any other issue under the board’s jurisdiction. [Sect. 6.04(d), Tax Code]
The district will provide an interpreter as a meeting if a person who does not speak English or communicates by sign language, and notifies the administrative assistant at least three business days before the meeting. The person must indicate that he or she desires to address the board and is unable to provide an interpreter. [Sec. 6.04(e)]
Access by Disabled Persons
The Duval County Appraisal District located at 100 W. Gravis has a handicapped parking place in front of the appraisal district office front door.
The board meeting room and ARB hearing room are wheelchair accessible. A person who needs additional assistance for entry or access should notify the administrative assistant in writing at least three business days before the meeting.
Policies for Resolving Complaints
The board will consider written complaints about the policies and procedures of the appraisal district, appraisal review board, the board of directors, and any other matter within the jurisdiction of the board of directors. The board will not consider complaints addressing any of the grounds for a challenge and a protest before the appraisal review board as set out in Sections
41.03 and 41.41, Tax Code. The board of directors has no authority to overrule the chief appraiser or appraisal review board’s decision on a value, a correction, or a protest.
Correspondence should be mailed to:
Chairman, Board of Directors
Duval County Appraisal District
P. 0. Box 809
San Diego, Texas 78384
Board deliberations concerning complaints will comply with provisions of the Texas Open Meetings Act, Chapter, 551, Government Code.
At least quarterly and until final disposition of a complaint, the board notifies the parties to the complaint of its status unless notice would jeopardize an undercover investigation. [Sec.6.04(e), Tax Code]
The Chief Appraiser and Property Appraisals
The chief appraiser is the chief administrator of the appraisal office. The chief appraiser serves at the pleasure of the board and is directly accountable to the board in the discharge of his or her duties and responsibilities. All other personnel of the appraisal office are employed by and accountable to the chief appraiser. The chief appraiser may delegate authority to the chief appraiser’s employees as necessary.
The chief appraiser and his staff appraise the properties in the appraisal district. If you have a concern about property appraisal, you should discuss it first with the appraisal district’s staff. Complaints that cannot be resolved at the staff level should be addressed by written protest to the appraisal review board. Information may be obtained at the front office of the appraisal district office. The phone number is 361-279-3305.
Appraisal Review Board
The appraisal review board is responsible for hearing and resolving protests from property owners concerning appraisal of their properties. The appraisal district funds the ARB’s operations and provides clerical support for their activities. Three members are appointed by the board of directors and is an independent citizen board. The appraisal review board’s duties and a property owner’s right to protest the appraisal of the owner’s property are more thoroughly explained in the pamphlets entitled Texas Property Taxpayer’s Rights and Remedies. Thispamphlet is available at the appraisal districts office.