ALTO, TX (KTRE) - The city council of Alto has discussed the re-appraisal of properties within the city limits and new pro-rated tax fees for those impacted by two deadly tornadoes in April.
The Cherokee County Appraisal District was in Alto on Tuesday evaluating damaged properties, including the school district and properties around the county.
Donnie Griffin received damage to his kitchen and roof during the April 14 storms. Although his home is habitable, he said he was grateful to have had his home assessed by the appraisal district on Monday.
“That makes me feel pretty good, because you know a small, little town like this, and you don’t hardly really get to the people that need this help," said Griffin. “And you know, most people live way back like I live back there. It’s kind of hard to see them from the road and it makes them feel like they are left out.”
During a special city council meeting on Monday, Lee Flowers with the Cherokee County Appraisal District said they would take tax rates from Jan. 1 to April 12 and they would pro-rate it per day.
If approved by the city council, they would readjust and re-evaluate everyone’s property taxes and pro-rate the rates from April 13 to Dec. 31, and then combine the costs together.
City officials said the move would benefit residents.
“This is important for those impacted because, well, if you have had your properties destroyed, you know that is not only damage, but there are also a lot of properties that are 100-percent lost. And you don’t want to be paying taxes on an 80 to $90,000 home if that home is no longer.”
Assistance with debris removal in the city also got underway to help assist with the storm clean-up process, which residents like Griffin said will help them recover physically and mentally.
“That’s really good, how we all come together in East Texas to help one another, and I thank the Lord that I’m here today to talk to you about this storm and different things,” Griffin said.
The appraisal district will present the amount of damages to properties in Alto on Monday; that’s when the city council will vote on the re-appraisals.