The last day to pay 2018 taxes without penalty and interest for those participating in half/split pay (first half no later than November 30th and second half by June 30th) is July 1st (whenever a deadline falls on a holiday or weekend, it is extended to the next business day). Coupons for these payments were mailed May 15th. If you did not receive the coupon, call the Property Tax Department for the amount remaining or go online to
Those having difficulty paying 2018 property taxes will also have until July 1st to establish a payment agreement in order to avoid the 15% to 20% delinquent attorney fees that will be added July 2nd. Partial payments of taxes are accepted and penalties, interest and fees will only apply on the unpaid balance.
Although unpaid taxes accrue interest at a rate of 1% per month beginning in February, penalties are assessed at 6% the first month and increase 1% each month until July at which time they jump to 12% of the unpaid balance. “What this means is that penalties and interest total 18% July 2nd. Add to that the 15% to 20% delinquent attorney fee and a property owner will owe the base tax plus a total of from 33% to 38% in penalties, interest and attorney fees,” stated County Tax Assessor Cheryl Johnson.
Those unable to pay their entire tax bill should contact the Property Tax Department (409-766-2481 or toll free at 877-766-2284) or come to the Galveston Office at 722 Moody between 8 am and 5 pm Monday through Friday in order to make arrangements to pay. “Please avoid the unnecessary additional cost of the 15% to 20% attorney fee,” urged Johnson. “We want to work with our property owners and get these taxes taken care of as soon as possible in order to reduce the burden of unnecessary additional costs.”
Cash, checks, credit and debit cards are accepted at any of the four full time Tax Office locations in Galveston, League City, Santa Fe, or Texas City, at the Friendswood satellite office each Thursday and Friday and Crystal Beach satellite the 3rd Tuesday of each month. For directions or locations, please call our Support Services team toll free 1-877-766-2284. They can redirect you to a Property Tax Specialist as needed.
Customers may also go online and pay via credit card or electronic check at www.galcotax.com and click on the large red button to locate their account. You may also use a credit card via telephone by calling (toll free) 1-866-865-1433 (English) or 1-866-865-1435 (Spanish). Credit card payments incur an additional convenience fee of 2.5%. Electronic checks incur a $1 bank fee. Payments may be mailed to PO Box 1169, Galveston, Texas 77553 or left in GCTO drop boxes outside of each full time location.
The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (TxDMV) established the Performance Quality Recognition Program to recognize county tax assessor collectors that go above and beyond in complying with Texas laws, rules and procedures and that provide exceptional customer service. There are three levels of performance – Bronze, Silver and Gold.
March 11, 2019, Whitney Brewster, Executive Director of TxDMV, notified County Tax Assessor Collector Cheryl E. Johnson that her office has been awarded the Silver Level, recognizing her office for its outstanding performance and efficiency in providing title and registration services. Bronze recipients have demonstrated compliance with statutory requirements as well as shown a commitment to preventing fraud, providing a high level of customer service and training employees.
“Your office is in an elite group among your peers as one of only five offices to achieve Silver Level recognition...it is clear in reviewing your office’s application that you have a culture of continuous improvement and embrace positive change,” wrote Ms. Brewster. She thanked Ms. Johnson for being, “Driven to Serve.”
Since the program’s inception in 2018, of 254 Texas Counties, the following have achieved the indicated levels of performance:
Year Level of Achievement County
2019 Gold Williamson
2019 Gold Bee
2018 Silver Andrews
2018 Silver Bee
2019 Silver Galveston
2019 Silver Grimes
2018 Silver Wichita
2018 Bronze Archer 2
019 Bronze Austin
2018 Bronze Eastland
2018 Bronze Goliad
2018 Bronze Irion
2019 Bronze Madison
2018 Bronze San Patricio
County tax assessor Cheryl Johnson wants to ensure that residents don’t miss this year’s key deadlines for property-tax payments, protest applications and voter registration.
So she’s issued an easy-to-read calendar of all the salient dates with a recommendation that you place a record of the information somewhere prominent – your fridge door, perhaps – as a constant reminder to take care of the business involved in timely manner.
Here are the dates you need to bear in mind:
April 1 Second installment deadline for 2018 property taxes for seniors, disabled people including armed-forces veterans, surviving spouses of disabled veterans and taxpayers who take advantage of disaster installments
April 4 Last day to register to vote or to update your address information for the local elections on May 4
April 25 Johnson presents her free public class Effectively Protest Your Property Value at United Way training facility, 2800 Texas Avenue, Texas City, starting at 9:00am
April 30t Johnson presents her free public class Effectively Protest Your Property Value at League City council chambers, 200 West Walker Street, League City, starting at 6:00pm
May 2 Johnson presents her free public class Effectively Protest Your Property Value in room L-131 at College Of The Mainland’s
learning resource center, 1200 Amburn Road, Texas City, starting at 6:00pm
May 7 Johnson presents her free public class Effectively Protest Your Property Value in the commissioner courtroom on the second floor at the county courthouse, 722 Moody Avenue (21st Street), Galveston, starting at 6:00pm
Voter registration applications are available at all county tax office branches. Hours are 8:00am to 5:00pm Monday-Friday in Galveston, League City, Santa Fe and Texas City and every Thursday and Friday at Friendswood satellite office and 8:00am to 4:30pm the third Tuesday of each month at Crystal Beach satellite office.
Applications are also available at the county’s voter registration department in Galveston or online under the voter registration tab at www.galcotax.com.
The county can mail or email an application to you. Call its voter registration department toll free at 1-888-976-2280. For directions to branch offices, call toll free at 1-877-766-2284.
You may mail tax payments to the tax office at PO Box 1169, Galveston, Texas 77553, leave them in drop boxes outside each full-time tax-office location or pay online at www.galcotax.com either via electronic check for a $1 fee or via credit card for a 2.5% merchant fee.
Credit-card toll-free telephone payments are possible by calling 1-866-865-1433 for English-speaking taxpayers or 1-866-865-1435 for Spanish-speaking property owners.
For directions or locations, call the county tax office’s administration department toll free at 1-877-766-2284.
Most everyone in Galveston County is familiar with the battle between county judge candidates and the termination of Bonnie Quiroga. But what do you really know about the leading lady? Likely not much.
Bonnie Rigsby Quiroga began working for Galveston County in 1984. A public servant for 32 years, she was loyal to the people and purpose of county government.
Democrats controlled the County for 150 years thus the 2010 election of a Republican county judge and smooth transition of power was guaranteed to be difficult. Bonnie provided office space and personnel to him, helped him navigate the complexities of the courthouse, filled gaps on the history of departments and personalities of officials. They became friends but then, she dared to disagree with some decisions (recording devices placed in inmate/attorney conference areas, illegal bid activity by staff of GOP official, illegal hiring of relatives by GOP commissioner, etc.) and urged him to change paths.
That did not go well. She chose to be a responsible civil servant and blew the whistle and she was terminated. Two weeks later her brother was fired from the county and then commissioners threatened to eliminate her sister's position during budget workshops.
You see, the county judge has a problem. He is a bully. Bullies don’t want advice because they are never wrong. In order to distract critics, he lied, claiming she took too much time off from work (yet each year she forfeited vacation and sick leave). She worked nights and weekends but he said she didn’t do her job. He could not define her failures. Her personnel file contained no disciplinary action. When ordered by the judiciary to return to work, he locked her out of the office twice, ordered her arrested for trespass, denied telephone, computer and e-mail. She was not paid a single dime for two years.
I am not arguing Bonnie’s lawsuit, I think you deserve the truth. For two years you have been spoon fed political spin by the best lawyers tax money can buy. So here goes…
Bonnie Quiroga: community volunteer, property owner, taxpayer, daughter, mother, grandmother, sister to five brothers and sisters, aunt to seven, sister-in-law, cousin (of many) and friend to hundreds. Public servant (notable accomplishments included uncovering jail break that included plan to kill a Sheriff’s deputy, reported $400,000 theft of taxpayer funds, assisted in recovery of kidnapped child and arrest of his abductors, rescued terminated employees on the verge of retirement from loss of benefits, etc.). She rescues dogs, raises “Bonnie” rabbits and likes to fish with family and friends. She cared for a childhood friend dying of kidney disease for a year. She would give you the last dollar in her wallet, the shirt off her back, a frightful scowl when you are wrong and a healing hug if hurt. She laughs from the bottom of her gut and sings (loudly) out of tune.
So now you know the leading lady of 14-CV-1289. Thanks for your service - we love ya, Bon!!
Only days remain for timely payment of 2017 property taxes and the Galveston County Tax Office hopes to make it easy for you to check that chore off the “to do” list.
One-fourth installment payment option is available to homeowners over 65, disabled persons, disabled vets, surviving spouses of disabled vets and those affected by Harvey Hurricane. Divide amount by four and submit first payment by January 31st. The remaining installments will be due April 2, May 31 and July 31 (coupons with payment envelopes will be mailed in March as a reminder).
As in the past, the Galveston and League City branches will have extended hours January 31 (7:30 to 5:30), additional staff will be helping in all branches and shortened lunches will keep the counters full throughout the last week of January. For those waiting until the last minute, you will be competing for a place in line with more than 20,000 others renewing vehicle registrations, so be prepared!
2017 Payment Options
1. In person at GCTO branches in Galveston, League City, Santa Fe, Texas City Monday through Friday 8:00 to 5:00 and in Friendswood Thursdays and Fridays (closed Noon to 1:00 for lunch)
2. Drop in payment boxes at parking lot of all full time offices (picked up at 8:30 am daily and stamped received previous business day)
3. US mail – NOTE - all local mail is delivered to North Houston Distribution Center and later postmarked so drop January 30th to insure January 31st deadline
4. Online (www.galcotax.com) via electronic check ($1 fee) or credit card (2.5% fee)
5. Credit card via telephone (English 1-866-865-1433 or Spanish 1-866-865-1435)
If online banking is your preferred method of payment, expect a 3-5 day delay for paper check to be prepared and mailed to our office.
For directions to office locations call (toll free) 1-877-766-2284. Those with property tax questions should ask to talk to a Property Tax Specialist or call the department directly at (409) 766-2481.
Galveston County Tax Office
January 12, 2018
Cheryl E. Johnson, PCC Galveston County Tax Assessor-Collector