Protesters calling for “heads to roll” at the Tarrant Appraisal District for harassing a private citizen who helped residents lower their property tax bills may get what they asked for this Friday.
“YOU SPEAK, TAD LISTENS!” targeted Tarrant County realtor Chandler Crouch said on Tuesday, after the appraisal district responded to public calls for action and revised its agenda for the August 12 board of directors meeting.
According to the new agenda, TAD directors will now address the misleading licensing complaints filed against Crouch by one of the agency’s top bureaucrats, Director of Residential Appraisals Randy Armstrong. The board will also consider firing Armstrong’s boss, Chief Appraiser Jeff Law.
The original meeting agenda, which Crouch shared online on Monday, failed to even mention the targeting scandal that made headlines in June, when hundreds of protesters waited for hours outside the appraisal district offices to speak in support of Crouch and call for the firing of Armstrong and Law.
“So far, there have been no consequences for a TAD employee using county assets while on the clock to attack a private citizen,” Crouch said Monday. “Instead of doing the right thing, they hired a PR firm. Our tax dollars are being used to spin and sweep this under the rug.”
Crouch is well known for helping tens of thousands of Tarrant County homeowners lower their tax bills by protesting their property appraisals, free of charge.
Last year, Armstrong filed complaints against Crouch with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, accusing Crouch of making a “mockery of the current tax system.”
Armstrong’s complaints were made using his official title and taxpayer-funded resources, but Law told Crouch in November the complaints were not authorized by TAD.
Texas Scorecard covered Armstrong’s targeting of Crouch in a two-part investigative series (here and here).
At the June 30 board meeting, TAD officials said they would conduct an internal investigation and provide an update at the August meeting.
After Crouch alerted citizens on Monday that the appraisal district wasn’t doing what they said they would, TAD posted a revised agenda.
Crouch encouraged residents to show up again this Friday and make their voices heard.
“This is a very clear message to me that they respond to eyeballs and accountability,” he said on Tuesday. “If you want the right thing to happen on Friday, you have to show up.”
This whole issue is not about me. It’s about the conduct of the appraisal district employees and what the appraisal district is willing to tolerate in relation to how the employees target and try to silence private citizens.
“Who are they going to come after next?” he added. “We have an opportunity now to improve the system.”
The board meeting, which is open to the public, starts at 10:00 a.m. on August 12, at the Tarrant Appraisal District offices in Fort Worth. A public hearing on the district’s $28.6 million budget starts at 9:00 a.m.