AUSTIN, TX – Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Center for Local Governance Director James Quintero today gave invited testimony before the House Committee on Elections. Quintero testified on Interim Charge 3, which aims to improve transparency and accountability in the debt issuance process.
“Local governments are awash in a sea of red ink,” said Quintero. “Part of the problem is that voters have too little information in the voting booth. A Texan deciding upon a new debt proposal has only two things provided to them on the ballot: a short paragraph of legalese about the project and the principal amount to be borrowed. That’s simply not enough detail to make an informed decision about the future of one’s community, especially given the huge sums involved.”
“It’s critical that the next Legislature act to reform the current debt issuance process so that voters are better prepared to make informed decisions. When a person steps into the voting booth, they should know what approving the bond will cost the average homeowner in their area and how much will be required to pay it back in full and on-time.”
To read the full testimony, please visit: http://txpo.li/2cGrXIo
To read the latest research on local government debt, see the June 2016 publication Red Ink Rising in the Lone Star State.