Soaring property appraisals in Pampa are rubbing some homeowners the wrong way. Because dozens of people's property taxes went up more than 50%. Now they are second guessing the accuracy of the Gray County Appraisal District Office.
NewsChannel 10's Marissa Bagg spoke with the Chief Appraiser and homeowners about the hike.
More than 100 people in Pampa think their properties were appraised for more than they're worth. They want to know what can be done to lower the values so they can afford the taxes on them.
"We're on a fixed income, retired on a fixed income. We cant call social security and tell them we need a little bit more money," says Charlie Fang.
"My social security didn't raise, it raises a little every year but not the way everything else is raising," says Cliff Martin.
People on a fixed income are stressed about how they will pay property taxes on an appraisal that increased in the double digits. Stan Organ's home value increased by $64,000 in just two years.
"Well I thought my goodness, what are they doing," says Organ.
He isn't wasting any time. He's already filed a protest with the Gray County Appraisal Office.
"I hope they lower it, I hope they don't hold us at $168,000 they say homes around us have sold for $175,000, but those homes are close to me, the one next to me is maybe a $5,000 home," says Organ.
County Commissioner Gary Willoughby is hoping others will follow suit and file a protest.
"The Chief Appraiser has the right to chose 3 or 4 methods to appraise a property but when we see a 40% to 61% increase, it leads me to wonder are we using the right methods," says Willoughby.
Chief Appraiser Pat Bagley says there is a simple answer why property values have gone up.
"Lots of people and businesses are moving into town, the demand for housing has gone up extremely and finding a house to rent or by is very difficult," says Bagley.
But that reason isn't good enough for people like Organ.
"I went to school here in the 50's when the population was 30,000 it's 16,000 today so it doesn't look like it's growing that much, it might be growing right now, but in 5 years when the oil field shuts down it might be going the other way," says Organ.
The Chief Appraiser welcomes anyone with questions about their property appraisal to come to his office.