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In re Harris Cty. Appraisal Dist.

Court of Appeals of Texas, Fourteenth District, Houston

April 18, 2019, Memorandum Opinion Filed

NO. 14-19-00078-CV



On January 30, 2019, relator Harris County Appraisal District ("HCAD") filed a petition for writ of mandamus in this court. See Tex. Gov't Code Ann. § 22.221; see also Tex. R. App. P. 52. In the petition, relator asks this court to compel the Honorable Ursula Hall, presiding judge of the 165th District Court of Harris County, to rule on its plea to the jurisdiction. We conditionally grant the petition.


The issue in this mandamus proceeding is whether the trial court abused its discretion by failing to rule on HCAD's plea to the jurisdiction, in which HCAD asserted that Nexen Energy Marketing, U.S.A. failed to exhaust its administrative remedies before seeking judicial review of the Appraisal Review Board's ("ARB") order denying Nexen's request that certain property be removed from HCAD's appraisal rolls and records.

According to Nexen, oil was temporarily located in Harris County, while in transit to Louisiana. The oil arrived at Oiltanking Houston, L.P. in late December 2014, and was pumped into Nexen's leased [*2]  batching tank. It was moved by pipeline into Louisiana shortly after January 1, 2015. For the 2015 tax year, Nexen rendered to HCAD its personal property at Oiltanking, including the oil, and also tank bottom oil, which is needed to facilitate the proper operation of the tank and pipelines, and paid the tax on its assessed personal property.

Thereafter, Nexen filed a request for correction of the Harris County appraisal roll with the ARB seeking to have the oil and tank bottom oil exempted from assessment of personal property because the oil was in interstate commerce. The ARB denied Nexen's request for correction.

Nexen filed an original petition with request for disclosure in the trial court for review of the ARB's order. Nexen alleged that, because it had paid all assessed taxes, including those on the oil and tank bottom oil, it was entitled to a refund. Nexen further claimed that it had exhausted all administrative remedies before appealing the ARB's ruling in the trial court.

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2019 Tex. App. LEXIS 3125 *; 2019 WL 1716274


Prior History:  [*1] ORIGINAL PROCEEDING WRIT OF MANDAMUS. 165th District Court, Harris County, Texas. Trial Court Cause No. 2017-48442.


trial court, mandamus, oil, summary judgment motion, administrative remedy, exhaust, interlocutory, appraisal, noticed, tank

Civil Procedure, Writs, Common Law Writs, Mandamus, Pleading & Practice, Motion Practice, Administrative Law, Judicial Review, Reviewability, Exhaustion of Remedies, Tax Law, State & Local Taxes, Administration & Procedure, Judicial Review, Justiciability, Exhaustion of Remedies, Failure to Exhaust, Appeals, Appellate Jurisdiction, Interlocutory Orders, Final Judgment Rule, Appellate Jurisdiction