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Click here for the full text of this decision FACT: The underlying suit was filed in 2004. The next year, the parties, pursuant to Texas Rule of Civil Procedure 263, submitted an agreed statement of facts to the trial court upon which judgment would be rendered. The trial court certified the agreed statement of facts and adopted it as its own findings of fact. The undisputed facts as stipulated by the parties and found by the trial court showed that the landowners acquired multiple parcels of undeveloped real property in Collin County for the purpose of developing them into residential subdivisions. At the time the landowners acquired the properties, the land qualified as open-space agricultural land pursuant to Texas Tax Code �23.52 and was taxed on that basis. After obtaining permit approvals, the landowners began developing the properties for residential use. At all relevant times, the appraisal district was on an annual reappraisal program. During the time the residential subdivisions at issue were being developed, however, the district did not physically inspect some of the properties because of difficulty accessing them. For those properties, it relied upon development plats filed in the public records. After the appraisal district became aware there had been a change of use, it notified the landowners that it was changing the tax classification of the properties from agricultural to residential. The notices also informed the landowners they were being assessed rollback tax penalties as provided by �23.55. The property in the change of use determination included land used for streets and alleys that were constructed by the landowners incident to the development of the properties as residential subdivisions in accordance with, and as required by, the ordinances and regulations of the cities in which the subdivisions were being built. The landowners timely protested the change of use notices with the Collin County Appraisal Review Board. They asserted that the imposition of rollback taxes on the portions of the land developed as streets and alleys violated Texas law prohibiting the taxation of land dedicated to public use. In addition, the landowners argued that the appraisal district failed to notify them of its determination of a change of use for one of the properties within the time period provided by statute. The appraisal review board denied each of the protests. The landowners then brought this action. The landowners’ petition asserted claims against the appraisal district for violations of the Texas Tax Code. Based on the stipulated facts, the trial court signed its judgment on July 14, 2006, decreeing that the landowners take nothing on their claims. HOLDING:Affirmed. In their first issue on appeal, the landowners contend the appraisal district failed to comply with the statutory deadline under �25.18 for providing them notice of a change of use. Change of use determinations are regulated by �23.55, the court stated. Under �23.55, the duty to determine that a change of use of land has occurred is placed on the chief appraiser. Once the determination is made, the chief appraiser must deliver a notice of the determination to the owner of the land “as soon as possible.” The landowners made no argument that the notice was not sent out as soon as possible after the determination was made. Their argument rested entirely on the assertion that the determination must be made within three years of the date the change of use occurs because property must be reappraised at least every three years. To hold otherwise, the landowners contend, would render �25.18 and �23.55 meaningless. The court concluded that neither �25.18 nor �23.55 required that a change of use determination be made within three years after the change of use occurs and grafting the reappraisal deadlines onto the change of use determination statute was not necessary to give either statute meaning. The court also noted that the chief appraiser was statutorily required to reappraise property only once every three years. Because the change of use determination was made within three years of the date of the change of use, the determination did not indicate any noncompliance with the statutory deadlines for reappraising property. In their second issue on appeal, the landowners contended that, with respect to some of the properties, the chief appraiser improperly determined a change of use and assessed rollback tax penalties on land that was used for street and alley improvements, thus violating the law prohibiting the taxation of land dedicated to public use. Although the rules and regulations relied upon by the landowners dictate that developers manifest and communicate a clear intent to dedicate the land to be used for streets and alleys and other public places before they can obtain approval to begin development, this communication of intent is only part of the dedication process. There must also be acceptance of the dedication, the court stated. In this case, the court stated that based on the stipulated facts presented, acceptance of the dedicated land did not occur until the city issued its final acceptance certificates stating that the public improvements and dedications were accepted. Where the final acceptance certificates were signed after the date of the change of use, the court found that the property was not finally dedicated at the time the change of use occurred. Accordingly, the tax authority properly assessed rollback tax penalties against the landowners for the land at issue because they owned the land at the time the change of use occurred. OPINION:Morris, J.; Morris, Francis and Mazzant, JJ.

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