AUSTIN— Today, the Texas House of Representatives will debate whether or not taxpayers should continue to fund government lobbying, as well as the need for stronger reporting requirements for lobbying activities.

“We expect our elected officials to be judicious in the use and allocation of taxpayer dollars,” said Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Executive Director Kevin Roberts. “Local governments are using Texans’ tax dollars to push for more spending, higher property taxes, and less accountability and transparency. Instead of actively using taxpayer money to lobby against the interest of Texans, this money could be used to provide meaningful tax relief to families.”

According to a WPA Intelligence survey of registered voters in Texas, 91% oppose using taxpayer dollars to fund lobbyists, with 80% saying they strongly oppose it.

“In 2017, local Texas governments spent up to $41 million of taxpayer funds to influence state legislation,” said the Foundation’s Vice President of National Initiatives Chuck DeVore. “This is a low-ball estimate because it does not include funds spent on salary or travel for government employees whose full-time or part-time job it is to lobby.”