AUSTIN — Today, the Texas Public Policy Foundation released in conjunction two papers: The Real Texas Budget: 2018 and The 2020-21 Conservative Texas Budget.

“The Real Texas Budget allows Texans the opportunity to get a clear picture of the current state budget,” said Talmadge Heflin, director of the Center for Fiscal Policy. “The findings indicate the need for greater budget transparency and a stronger spending limit that restricts the growth of each budget to no more than population plus inflation. To provide Texans with tax relief, the Texas Legislature should pass a historic third consecutive Conservative Texas Budget.”

Dr. Vance Ginn, senior economist and director of the Center for Economic Prosperity, goes on to explain:

“The 2018-19 state appropriations total is up 7.3 percent above the compounded growth of population plus inflation since 2004. This amounts to the budget being up $15 billion more this biennium than if it had increased by this metric over time, burdening an average family of four with paying $1,000 more in taxes than otherwise this year. The Texas Legislature should restrain spending so more Texans prosper.”

The 2020-21 Conservative Texas Budget paper makes the recommendation that, instead of beginning a legislative session by discussing how much to spend, legislators should assure Texans that taxpayer money is already being spent wisely. Improved auditing of government expenditures would be possible when Texas shifts to a program-based budget that shows the source of funding for each program in the budget.

“The Texas Legislature has a chance to keep growth in government spending under control for two consecutive sessions,” said Vice President of Research Bill Peacock. “To achieve this, it must keep appropriations in the 2019 supplemental bill – not including Harvey funding – to no more than $4.44 billion.”

The 2020-21 Conservative Texas Budget also highlights how the nine states without a personal income tax, including Texas, perform better economically than the nine states with the nation’s highest personal income tax rates. This comparison provides evidence that limiting total state spending is necessary to keep taxes low and to allow Texans the freedom to prosper.

To read The Real Texas Budget: 2018, visit:

To read the 2019-21 Conservative Texas Budget, visit:

For more information, please contact Sarah Silberstein or 512-472-2700.    

Texas Public Policy Foundation is a non-profit free-market research institute based in Austin that aims to foster human flourishing by protecting and promoting liberty, opportunity, and personal responsibility.

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