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Golf course as wildlife refuge? PGA resort fights for another tax break

PGA Front PageInvestigative Reporter Karisa King continues digging into the property tax system in Bexar County. She’s been examining how homeowners and businesses try to find ways to lower their property appraisals, which in turn lowers their tax bill.

Her Sunday story disclosed how the owners of the PGA Tour golf resort, which was built after years of controversy, are now seeking lower property taxes by claiming the two golf courses provide a wildlife refuge for deer and birds:

“I don’t think most people think of a golf course as a wildlife refuge,” said Mary Kieke, the county’s deputy chief appraiser. “Setting aside any insecticide and fertilizer contamination issue, clearing land for fairways cannot possibly enhance any wildlife’s access to shelter.”

At stake are millions of dollars in future revenue for local taxing entities, including Bexar County, Judson Independent School District, University Health System and Alamo Colleges.

Read more about vested rights: How developers skirt city codes