The city of Austin's lawsuit against the Travis Central Appraisal District – as well as, technically,all property owners in the district– was dismissed Friday by a District Court judge.
According to the Austin American-Statesman, the city has yet to decide if it will appeal the decision. If it does, it has 30 days to do so. According to the paper, the judge raised questions about the proper role of the court to bring a remedy in the case.
The suit directly challenged the constitutionality of Texas' status as a so-called "non-disclosure state," or one in which property sale prices are not required to be publicly disclosed when land trades hands. Texas is one of 12 such non-disclosure states in the U.S.
"RECA believes in fairness as a value, and we also believe in honesty. The city of Austin’s ill-conceived lawsuit ignored the fact that higher commercial property taxes would also be paid by Austin’s working families — through higher rents, higher prices and lower wages. It would be in the community’s best interest if the city does the right thing and opts not to appeal this decision," the RECA statement said.
Originally, the city asked the court to declare that mandatory sales price disclosure is necessary to ensure that property taxes are levied at fair market values. However,the city dropped that requestearlier this week.
The suit's overall purpose was to challenge what city attorneys described as persistent undervaluations of Travis County commercial property, which MayorSteve Adlersaid were driving up taxes on residential property owners and contributing to Austin's housing affordability crunch.
Did you know that you can (and should) use a Realtor when buying a new
"As a first time home buyer (going into the whole process essentially blind), I was hoping I would find a realtor who I could fully trust to help me along the way. From the get go Alfredo was super personable and extremely communicative. His experience and knowledge of the system and the process put me at ease. I always felt like he had my back and went above & beyond when there was a property I wanted to put an offer on. For a process that can be so intense, the whole experience was relatively quick and seamless. I couldn't be happier with the way everything turned out and the wonderful effort Alfredo put in. And of course, I love my home!!"