Article VIII. Taxation  


ARTICLE VIII. TAXATION

Section 1. Department of Taxation. There may be a department of taxation, the head of which shall be the City Collector of Taxes. The Collector of Taxes shall be appointed by the Council and shall be responsible for the collection of all taxes levied by the City of Galveston. In addition the Collector of Taxes may be made responsible for the assessment and collection of taxes levied by a School District, Navigation District, Water Control and Improvement District or other political subdivisions, if the Council has by contract with such other political subdivision so provided. Instead of creating a department of taxation and appointing a City Collector of Taxes, the City may contract to have another government entity or agency, who is qualified to perform either the collection and appraisal functions, assess or collect taxes hereunder in accordance with the requirements of the Texas Tax Code and other applicable laws.

Section 2. Powers of Taxation. In order to carry out its municipal purposes, the City shall have the power to levy, assess, and collect taxes of every character and type as now or hereafter authorized by the Constitution and Laws of the State of Texas. Provided, however, that until otherwise authorized by the amendment of this Charter the power of the City to levy an annual ad valorem tax upon taxable property situated within its corporate limits shall include only the following:

(1) A tax at a rate not to exceed Seventy Cents ($0.70) on each $100.00 of assessed valuation for general operating expenses; and for the City's contributions toward the retirement or disability pensions of City employees; and for payment on the interest on and provide for the sinking fund required by law for all outstanding general obligation bonds of the City; and at the discretion of City Council for the employment of a municipal band.

(2) Effective January 1, 1979, for the conduct, maintenance, improvement and extension of Rosenberg Library, a tax rate which will yield that amount which would be derived by the levy of a Five Cent ($0.05) tax, or at the discretion of the City Council, an additional amount up to a maximum total of an Eight Cent ($0.08) tax, per $100.00 of assessed valuation based upon a one hundred (100) per cent assessment ratio.

(Ord. No. 89-17, § 3(12), 1-26-89; Ord. No. 91-95, § 4(13), 11-14-91; Ord. No. 96-59, § 11, 6-16-96)

(Ord. No. 75-18, § 3, 4-10-75; Ord. No. 79-24, § 3, 4-9-79; Ord. No. 89-17, § 3(13), 1-26-89; Ord. No. 96-59, § 11, 6-16-96; Ord. No. 98-33, § 25, 6-3-98; Ord. No. 98-66, § 7, 7-30-98)

(Ord. No. 96-59, § 11, 6-16-96; Ord. No. 98-33, § 26, 6-3-98; Ord. No. 98-66, § 8, 7-30-98)

(Ord. No. 89-17, § 3(14), 1-26-89; Ord. No. 96-59, § 11, 6-16-96; Ord. No. 02-033, § 6, 5-4-02)

(Ord. No. 89-17, § 3(15), 1-26-89; Ord. No. 96-59, § 11, 6-16-96)

(Ord. No. 89-17, § 3(17), 1-26-89; Ord. No. 96-59, § 11, 6-16-96)

(Ord. No. 89-17, § 3(18), 1-26-89; Ord. No. 96-59, § 11, 6-16-96)

(Ord. No. 96-59, § 11, 6-16-96)

(Ord. No. 96-59, § 11, 6-16-96)

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The property subject to taxation is now controlled by V.A.T.C., Property Tax Code, § 11.01.

Section 2(a) of Article VIII of the Charter was adopted at a regular city election held April 11, 1967. The election results were confirmed by Ord. No. 67-23, § 3, adopted April 20, 1967.

The City Council shall not make, permit, or approve any increase in ad valorem taxes on any taxable property in the City in any one year exceeding five (5) per cent of the City's immediate prior year's ad valorem tax, subject, however, to the total tax limitation in the City Charter. Such five (5) per cent limitation shall not prevent increased market valuation and taxation of taxable property when subsequent improvements are made. Provided further; that the proceeds of the one-half of one per cent (½%) sales tax adopted by the City shall be used to reduce the ad valorem tax rate on the basis of one dollar for each dollar received from the additional sales tax based on the sales tax received by the City from the most recent twelve month period that ends on June 30 to the extent required by Article VIII, Section I and Article VII, Section 19, of this Charter. This limitation shall not prevent increased market valuation and taxation of taxable property when subsequent improvements are made.

Section 2(b) was created by an amendment approved by the electorate on January 20, 1979. The election results were confirmed by Ord. No. 79-2, adopted January 22, 1979.

All property real, personal or mixed, having a situs within the corporate limits of the City of Galveston on January 1st of each year, not expressly exempted by law, shall be subject to taxation by the City of Galveston for such year. If the State requires appraisals of property, those appraisals will be made in accordance with State laws.

Former § 6, tax liens and liabilities, has been amended and renumbered as § 5. Former § 7, joint interest in property, has been repealed in its entirety. The aforesaid amendments were enacted by Ord. No. 89-17, § 3(18), (19), adopted January 26, 1989.

The City shall be entitled to counterclaim and offset against any debt, claim, demand or account owed by the City to any person, firm or corporation that is in arrears to the City of Galveston for taxes, in the amount of taxes so in arrears, and no assignment or transfer of such debt, claim, demand or account after the said taxes are due, shall affect the right of the City to so offset the said taxes against the same.

The Council shall be authorized to appropriate all delinquent taxes against which no demands are outstanding, and after the purposes for which said taxes were levied have been fulfilled and satisfied, to any proper municipal purpose, and the Council shall be empowered at the end of the fiscal year to declare such residue of all said delinquent taxes a surplus fund, and to direct that the same when collected be carried as a surplus account subject to the further appropriation by said Council for proper municipal purposes.

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Tax rate limited, Const., art. 8, § 9, art. 11, § 5; license fees limited, Const., art. 8, § 1.

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Tax for airport purposes, Vernon's Ann. Civ. St. art. 46d-8.

The City Council may impose on the occupants of hotels, as that term is defined by State law, a tax as permitted by State law on the amount paid for rooms; and may provide for the collection, on behalf of the City, of such tax by the operator of the hotel from the occupant of the room, and transmittal of the proceeds of the tax to the City. The proceeds of any such tax levied at the rate of 3%, after the expense of collection, shall be appropriated by the city for the use by the beach park board of trustees for the purpose of advertising and promoting the city's recreational advantages and advertising and promoting recreational facilities under the board's supervision and control; provided, however, that no portion of the tax levied at the rate of 3% for advertising and promoting the city's recreational advantages and advertising and promoting recreational facilities shall be used by the beach park board of trustees for capital improvements nor shall such proceeds ever be pledged as security for a bond issue.

Tax assessment, Vernon's Ann. Civ. St., art. 7181a et seq.; listing of property for taxation, Vernon's Ann. Civ. St., art. 7151.

All taxes due the City of Galveston shall be payable at the office of the City Tax Collector in accordance with State law. The City shall assess penalties and interest in accordance with State law.

All property, real, personal and mixed, situated in the City of Galveston on the 1st day of January of each year shall stand charged with a special lien in favor of the City from said date for the taxes due thereon. The liens provided herein shall be superior to all other liens, excepting where otherwise provided by law, regardless of when such other liens were created. All persons purchasing any of said property after the 1st day of January of any year shall take the same subject to the liens herein provided. In addition to the liens against property as herein provided, the owner on the 1st day of January of any year of property subject to taxation by the City shall be personally liable for taxes due thereon for such year. The City shall have the power to sue for and recover personal judgement for taxes without foreclosure, or to foreclosure its lien or liens, or to recover both personal judgement and foreclosure. In any such suit where it appears that the description of any property in the City tax rolls is insufficient to identify such property, the City shall have the right to plead a good description of the property intended to be assessed, to prove the same, and to have its judgement foreclosing the tax lien or for personal judgement against the owner for such taxes.

Sections 6 and 7. Reserved.