Last week Texas Gov. Rick Perry unveiled “The Texas Budget Compact,” designed to protect taxpayers and promote economic growth in the Lone Star State. The platform laid out in the Texas Budget Compact, if implemented, will create a more transparent and efficient state government through the adherence to 5 simple principles that Gov. Perry asks legislators and candidates to keep in mind as they prepare for the 2013 legislative session and beyond:
1. Practice truth in budgeting;
2. Support a Constitutional limit of spending to the growth of population and inflation;
3. Oppose any new taxes or tax increases, and make the small business tax exemption permanent;
4. Preserve a strong Rainy Day Fund; and
5. Cut unnecessary and duplicative government programs and agencies.
Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) applauds and fully supports Gov. Perry’s Compact. Perry’s plan is very much in step with the goals of Texans for a Conservative Budget, a coalition of policy and grassroots organizations dedicated to cutting wasteful spending in Texas state government, of which Americans for Tax Reform is a member. ATR encourages legislators to adhere to Gov. Perry’s principles to create a stronger, more prosperous Texas. Gov. Perry’s Budget Compact should be used as a model of fiscal stewardship for other states.
Perry’s Compact recognizes that the problem is on the spending side of the ledger. Higher taxes at the state level will only have an adverse impact on the Texas economy. Not only does Perry’s Compact rule out job-killing tax increases, it proposes a solution to rein in out of control state spending.
The Texas Public Policy Foundation released a Policy Brief this month addressing Texas’s over-spending problem. According to the report, state spending has risen by 310 percent from fiscal year 1990 through fiscal year 2012. During this time, Texas’ population growth and inflation have only increased by a combined 132 percent. Gov. Perry’s proposal for a Constitutional limit of spending to the growth of population and inflation will correct the state’s unsustainable spending trajectory and ensure that Texas remains a magnet for job creators.