Texas School District Funding | MVBA Law

Texas School District Funding

Phil Green at MVBA Law helps ensure proper TEA funds reach Texas school districts

Going further to help Texas school districts receive appropriate State funding

$12,640,821.11 for our clients’ school communities

“In just over a year since we welcomed Phil Green to the mvba team as Director of Taxable Value Audits, we have been able to provide a return of approximately $12,640,821.11 to Texas school districts from the Texas Education Agency (TEA),” says D. Bryant Smith, Executive Director. “We’re so proud to be able to take care of our clients in this way with proactive taxable value audits.”

A taxable value audit (TVA) is a measurement tool used by the various agencies that are involved in determining TEA funding for school districts. It allows school districts to go back and reexamine values they reported during a specific year.

“What we do,” explains Phil, “is help recover lost budget revenue that the school districts wouldn’t necessarily receive if their taxable value is reported as it is now. My office focuses on the local side of the Comptroller’s ratio study of a given school district’s taxable value. I look at how the value was assessed by the appraisal district and I double check to see if there’s been any reduction in market value in the meantime. I also check if there’ve been added exemptions; that is, properties paying less than their assessed tax rate.”

If the market value of the area goes down, the taxable liability needs to be lowered to reflect the lower tax base. If a school district has a diminished tax base, they may qualify for more funds from the TEA or to receive a refund of some portion of the monies they’ve already submitted to the TEA.

“When Phil determines that local values are lower, he files a report immediately to try to recover value for mvba’s clients. He’s been working this beat and refining his approaches for over 20 years, and for the 19 years prior to joining our team, he worked at the State Comptroller’s Office. Our clients get the benefit of that experience for free, regardless of how much money he recovers for them. Taxable value audits are part and parcel of our exceptional client service.”

201 TVAs performed in 2020

The TVA office has closed out the review of the 2016 school year and TVAs for gas compressor litigation dating back to 2012. This gas compressor litigation included changes outside of the TVA three-year window, which can only be filed within one year of a related judgment. TVAs filed under special circumstances like these can be used to recover substantial losses for the client.

The 2017 TVAs will be reviewed until August 2021. Districts have three years to complete this process after they file a Property Value Study. Beginning in August, Phil’s office will start working through 2019 reports.

The State changed its funding model to account for current year values in 2018. Before that, they used the prior year value certified by the Texas Comptroller’s Office to the Texas Education Agency (TEA) to assess school budgets. As a result of this change to the funding model, mvba will not file TVAs for 2018.

Contact Phil Green today to ensure your ISD receives proper TEA funding. 512-323-3200