DALLAS - Trying to finance badly needed improvements, a South Texas water district has been forced to confront its history of illegally collecting possibly millions of dollars of property taxes while under state oversight for two decades, according to documents and interviews.

The Duval County Conservation and Reclamation District has stalled in its efforts to obtain $795,000 in financing from the Texas Water Development Board's bond-financed revolving fund. The money would pay to replace a water tower and make other improvements in the poor county, located west of Corpus Christi.

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