ECONOMY

Nelson Emphasizes Property Tax Relief in Senate Budget

State Senate Finance Chairwoman Jane Nelson R-Flower Mound, and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick discussed the Senate's base budget plan at a Jan. 27, 2015, news conference.
State Senate Finance Chairwoman Jane Nelson R-Flower Mound, and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick discussed the Senate's base budget plan at a Jan. 27, 2015, news conference.

Nearly two weeks after the House's base budget was released, Senate Finance Chairwoman Jane Nelson presented the Senate's plan, which she said sets aside $3 billion for "meaningful" property tax relief for Texas homeowners.

Film Incentive Program Fears Guilt by Association

Richard Linklater says incentive funding is crucial to the Texas film industry, even if his film Boyhood didn't make the cut for incentives.
Richard Linklater says incentive funding is crucial to the Texas film industry, even if his film Boyhood didn't make the cut for incentives.

With other state incentive programs under attack for favoritism and weak oversight, one that seems to be working famously might get caught in the crossfire. Film industry supporters hope it survives.

Analysis: The Tax That Consumers Are Ignoring

When an out-of-state retailer doesn't add Texas sales and use taxes to your bill, it's not because no taxes are owed — and it's not because the retailer is doing something illegal. Texas consumers fail to pay almost $1.8 billion annually.
When an out-of-state retailer doesn't add Texas sales and use taxes to your bill, it's not because no taxes are owed — and it's not because the retailer is doing something illegal. Texas consumers fail to pay almost $1.8 billion annually.

When an out-of-state retailer doesn't add Texas sales and use taxes to your bill, it's not because no taxes are owed — and it's not because the retailer is doing something illegal. Texas consumers fail to pay almost $1.8 billion annually.

Tighter Spending Cap May Keep Billions Out of Budget

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst (right) and House Speaker Joe Straus listened to testimony on the cost of the continuing border surge during the Legislative Budget Board hearing's on Dec.1, 2014.
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst (right) and House Speaker Joe Straus listened to testimony on the cost of the continuing border surge during the Legislative Budget Board hearing's on Dec.1, 2014.

Depending on your political leanings, the spending cap state lawmakers set this week was either too low, too high or just right. Regardless, the arcane measure could effectively block lawmakers from accessing billions of dollars in state revenue.

Politics of Climate Change in Texas Have Shifted

A view of the Houston Ship Channel from the back of the Sam Houston tour boat in Feb. 2014.
A view of the Houston Ship Channel from the back of the Sam Houston tour boat in Feb. 2014.

Texas leaders weren't always so skeptical about climate change. But the state's rightward shift, coupled with a booming oil and gas economy, have changed the tenor of the debate. This story was produced in collaboration with The World.