Pecos County Property Tax Revenue Drops by the Millions

Pecos County Property Tax Revenue Drops by the Millions

PECOS COUNTY, TX (KWES) - Property tax revenue in Pecos County has dropped by the millions. Officials are blaming the downturn in the oil industry. The county estimates nearly $8 Million in property tax revenue is nowhere to be seen this year. Now they're expecting a third of their budget to be cut.

"We've lived through some ups and downs over the last few years and we will live through this one too," said Joe Shuster, a Pecos County Judge.

Almost 90 percent of appraisals in Pecos County depend on oil, gas, and industrial revenue.

"The downturn of the oil and gas industries in west Texas. Every time it drops, it drops. Every time it rises, the values go up," said Shuster.

"Our value for the county, being oil and energy related, that's why we're seeing such a significant drop," said Sam Calderon, the Chief Appraiser for Pecos County.

It has not yet been decided where the budget cuts will hit hard. Judge Shuster, says they've dealt with this before.

"We will end up having to make some cuts. There will probably be less service and that will probably be one of the things most visible by the general public," said Shuster.

He predicts the biggest impact will be on the budget to improve their 526 miles of county roads.

"So we will have to purchase less gravel, less emulsion to be able to pave less roads," said Shuster.

And the county parks will be seeing the same outcome.

"We have to cut back on other parts of the parks. Any improvements on the parks will have to stop for next year," said Shuster.

Each county department has been asked to try and cut 30 percent of their budget.

"We can't predict what the oil market is going to do. This would be considered a worst case scenario," said Calderon.

A series of appraisal revenue board hearings kick off July 7th and 8th.