Office of House Bill AnalysisH.B. 1200
By: Brimer
Ways & Means


The property tax system in Texas may place a disproportionate burden on
capital-intensive industries compared to other entities.  This burden
provides a significant financial disincentive to businesses who desire to
invest large amounts of money in Texas, exacerbated by the fact that other
states have restructured their tax laws in an effort to attract projects
and high-paying jobs.  Texas needs to level the tax burden on
capital-intensive companies to encourage large-scale capital investments in
the state to create new jobs, and to enable local government officials to
compete with the economic incentives being offered by other states.  House
Bill 1200 creates a local option economic development tool that allows the
state to compete for jobs and large projects.     


It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that rulemaking
authority is expressly delegated to the comptroller of public accounts in
SECTIONS 1 (Section 313.032, Tax Code) and the commissioner of education in
SECTION 5 (Section 42.2515, Education Code) of this bill. 


House Bill 1200 amends the Tax, Education, and Government codes.  The bill
amends the Tax Code to provide the categorization of school districts for
purposes of determining the required minimum amount of a qualified
investment and the minimum amount of a limitation on appraised value.  The
bill authorizes an owner of qualified property to apply to the governing
body of a school district (district) in which the property is located for a
limitation on the appraised value for district ad valorem tax purposes of
the person's qualified property (limitation).  The bill sets forth
provisions relating to application and the form used for such a limitation.
The bill requires the governing body of a district to conduct an economic
development evaluation to determine whether to approve or disapprove such
an application and sets forth the factors the governing body must include
and is required to consider in conducting the evaluation.  The bill sets
forth provisions relating to the determination of the applicant's
eligibility for a limitation and the amount of a limitation.  The bill sets
forth provisions relating to public disclosure of certain business
information provided to a district with an application for a limitation.
The bill provides for an annual report to be submitted by each property
owner whose property is subject to a limitation on appraised value and sets
forth the requirement for the report.  The bill prohibits the district, if
a limitation is approved, from adopting a tax rate that exceeds the
district's rollback tax rate for each of the first two tax years that
begins after the date the application is approved.  The bill provides that
property subject to a limitation in a tax year is not eligible for tax
abatement by a district in that tax year.  (Secs. 313.022-313.029, 313.031,
and 313.032). 
The bill provides that a person is also entitled to a tax credit from the
district that approved the limitation in an amount equal to the amount of
ad valorem taxes paid to that district and that were imposed on the portion
of the appraised value that exceeds the amount of the limitation in each
year in the applicable qualifying time period.  The bill sets forth
provisions relating to an application for a tax credit, a determination of
a person's eligibility for such a credit, and the amount of credit received
and the implementation of procedures for a tax credit (Secs.
313.052-313.054).  The bill sets forth provisions  regarding remedy for
erroneous credit that is determined by the comptroller and the governing
body of a school district (Sec. 313.055).            

The bill requires the comptroller to adopt rules and forms necessary for
the implementation and administration of the above provisions until their
expiration of the provisions on December 31, 2012, but provides that a
limitation approved before the expiration date continues in effect and a
property owner's tax credit is not affected by the expiration of these
provisions  (Secs. 313.030, 313.032, 313.056, and 313.071). 

The bill requires the chief appraiser to annually compile and send to the
Texas Department of Economic Development (department) a  list of properties
in the appraisal district that have a  market value of $100 million or more
in the tax year.  The bill also requires the department to compile a list
of all properties reported and deliver it to the comptroller, lieutenant
governor, speaker of the house, and each member of the legislature.  The
bill authorizes the designation of reinvestment zones by a district and
sets forth provisions for a district to consider in making a designation.
The bill provides that the Property Redevelopment and Tax Abatement Act
expires September 1, 2007, if not continued in effect (Secs. 23.03,
312.0025, and 312.006).  

The bill amends the Education Code to provide that a district is entitled
to state aid each school year in an amount equal to the amount of all tax
credits credited against ad valorem taxes of the district in that year. The
bill authorizes the commissioner of education to adopt rules to implement
and administer this provision (Sec. 42.2515). 

The bill amends the Government Code to require the governing board of the
department to include in its annual report to the governor and to the
legislature a listing of prospective projects identified by the business
development division of the department that proposed to invest at least
$100 million in the state.  The bill also requires the attorney general,
the comptroller, the department, and the Council on Workforce and Economic
Competitiveness to conduct a survey of tax incentive and economic
development laws enacted in other states since 1990, and to annually
prepare a joint report of the survey results to be delivered to the
governor, the lieutenant governor, and the speaker of the house of
representatives with recommendations for legislative action.  The bill
requires the Texas Legislative Council and any other state agency, on
request, to assist in conducting the survey or in preparing the joint
report (Secs. 481.0044 and 481.168).    


January 1, 2002.  Provisions relating to the expiration date of the
Property Redevelopment and Tax Abatement Act take effect on September 1,