Crunch Time in Texas Budget Negotiations


Posted by Patrick M. Gleason on Friday, May 13th, 2011, 11:58 AM PERMALINK

There are just 17 days left in the biannual session of the Texas legislature and lawmakers in both chambers are working in conference committee to complete the 2012-2013 state budget.

Americans for Tax Reform, as part of the Texans for a Conservative Budget Coalition, is urging lawmakers to reach a final budget agreement that adheres to the following principles:

  • The Texas state budget should reflect the state's fiscal means, and make hard choices on necessary cuts.
  • The Texas state budget should not use a penny of the Economic Stabilization Fund, better known as the "Rainy Day Fund."
  • The Texas state budget should not burden Texans with new taxes, however presented.

While both the House and the Senate have passed budgets that adhere to these principles, taxpayers are not yet in the clear. As Michael Quinn Sullivan, president of Texans for Fiscal Responsibility warned yesterday: 

....some senators are looking to pull more and more money from the rainy day fund, while some House members are looking for new revenues -- all in the hopes of living beyond your means.

Texans need to contact their representatives in Austin today, and can do so by simply going to the website of Texans for a Conservative Budget.

As ATR has previously noted, Texas will continue to face challenges in the coming biennia, and keeping the rainy day fund in tact will ensure that the state is on sound fiscal ground to meet those challenges. Just as important, by passing a budget that avoids job-killing tax increases and maintains the predictable, pro-growth tax and regulatory climate that Gov. Rick Perry and lawmakers have worked for over a decade to establish, Texas can send a message to the rest of the nation that the Lone Star State will continue as the nation’s economic powerhouse and leader in fiscal stewardship.

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