County ready for taxes

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 8, 2004

Dallas County homeowners, while preparing for Christmas, may have to come to an unhappy realization: It’s tax time again.

From Oct. 1 to Dec. 31, Dallas County residents have to pay property taxes at the Dallas County Tax Assessors Office.

While it isn’t pleasant, it has to be done.

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Dallas County Tax Assessor Frances Hughes said it’s a struggle to get the word out every year.

In Selma, property owners are responsible for 57.5 mills of property taxes each year, or 5.75 percent on the assessed value of a local home.

Dallas County residents who live outside the city limits are required to pay 34 mill, or 3.4 percent.

But, Hughes said there is good news: Homestead Exemptions.

Anyone who owns property with a home on it, Hughes said, is eligible for a homestead exemption.

Others are also eligible.

“Property owners who have owned their own property for a while and who have built a house, or moved a mobile home onto their property during the past year, and who live on that property, should also come by,” Hughes said.

Any property purchased during this year, or property without homestead exemptions won’t get any tax breaks until the next collection cycle, beginning on Oct. 1, 2005.

While that may not bode well for current homeowners without homestead exemptions, it does mean property owners will get to save money next year.

The deadline for applying for homestead exemptions is end of the year, Dec. 31.

Anyone who waits until after Dec. 31 won’t get a tax break until the following year.

Hughes said that the elderly and disabled are able to get even bigger tax breaks on their homestead exemptions.

The deadline, however, is still the same.

“People who have applied in the past for extra homestead due to age or disability should reapply before the end of the year,” Hughes said.

Businesses are also on a tight deadline, Hughes said.

All businesses operating in Dallas County are required to file a business personal property rendition before Dec. 31.

“If you established a new business between Oct. 1, 2003 and Sept. 30, 2004, you may call to request a personal property rendition,” Hughes said.

For more information, contact Hughes at 874-2520.