The Tarrant County College board of trustees listens to an agenda item at a work session Aug. 10, 2023, in TCC’s downtown Fort Worth campus. (Dang Le | Fort Worth Report)

Homeowners could pay a smaller property tax bill to Tarrant County College District for the 2023-24 school year. 

The TCC board of trustees in early August proposed cutting about 2 cents off of the district’s tax rate. Additionally, trustees proposed a tuition raise and expect to see an increase in funding from the state.

The planned tax rate cut and a new $5,000 homestead exemption recognize that rising property appraisals burden homeowners and businesses, board President Teresa Ayala said.

“We are working hard to make sure the college continues to be a good steward of taxpayer dollars,” Ayala said.

Trustees will consider setting the proposed tax rate at their Aug. 17 meeting. They are scheduled to hold a public hearing and adopt the tax rate at their Sept. 21 meeting.

“We’re bringing down the tax burden on the community,” Susan Alanis, TCC’s chief operating officer, said at the board’s Aug. 10 workshop meeting.

What is the proposed rate?

The proposed tax rate is 11.217 cents per $100 of valuation. The previous rate was 13.017 cents.

If adopted, the rate would be the lowest TCC has levied in two decades, according to Tarrant Appraisal District historical tax rate data.

Average property tax bill

The average home in the TCC District, which encompasses the entire county, has an appraised value of $371,092. 

However, only $304,013 of the value is considered for taxes, according to the Tarrant Appraisal District. 

The average property tax bill to TCC would be $335.40 — $13.36 lower than last year’s bill of $348.76.

In 2022, the average taxable value was $267,925.

Adding up the tax rate

The rate is composed of two smaller components

  • The maintenance-and-operation tax rate that funds daily operations.
  • The debt service rate that pays off debt. 

The proposed maintenance-and-operation tax rate is 9.617 cents, a decrease of more than 1 cent from last year’s rate of 11.117 cents. 

The proposed debt service is 1.6 cents, a 0.3-cent decrease. 

How is TCC funded?

TCC is primarily funded by local property taxes, state money and student tuition and fees. 

TCC’s share of state funding will see a $5 million increase after Gov. Greg Abbott signed a law changing how community colleges are financed. TCC expects to receive almost $64 million — an increase from $58.9 million in the previous year. 

The community college also proposed a tuition increase of $5 per credit hour starting in spring 2024. TCC also proposes to increase an additional $5 each fiscal year for the following two years, but the board will review the recommendation year by year, said Alanis, the college’s COO, at the Aug. 10 meeting. 

For every increase of $1, the community college sees an extra $850,000 in annual revenue increase. 

The last time the board increased tuition was in 2018. Trustees approved a $5 increase then. They agreed to keep the rates level for the next three years until 2021. However, a bump in tuition didn’t happen because administrators did not think it was appropriate during the COVID-19 pandemic, Alanis told the Report.

TCC expects a decrease in tuition revenue in the 2023-24 year despite the rate increase because of more conservative enrollment projections and the waiving of tuition for dual credit high school students, Alanis said. 

Property taxes accounted for more than 68% of most of TCC’s revenue under the previous budget.

In 2021, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board reported TCC had the highest rate of property taxes in its revenue out of all 50 community colleges in the state. 

Dang Le is a reporting fellow for the Fort Worth Report. Contact him at or via Twitter. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.

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Dang Le is a reporting fellow. He can be reached at Le has a journalism degree from the University of Texas at Arlington. He was the editor-in-chief at The Shorthorn, UTA’s...