Tribpedia: Budget

The Texas Constitution requires the Legislature to balance its budget every year without borrowing against future receipts. That bars the government from deficit spending and forces lawmakers, who meet for 20 weeks every two years, to constantly balance demands for programs and services against voters' desire to limit taxes, fees and other costs of government.

The Legislative Budget Board — a ...

Good Times or Bad, the Texas Budget is Tight

When money was tight two years ago, the state's top budget writers employed cutbacks and accounting tricks to balance the budget. Money is flowing again, but the budget folks are still finding it easy to say no, saying they're blocked by lawmakers' promises not to spend faster than inflation and to use the state's Rainy Day Fund sparingly.

In his Jan. 29, 2013, State of the State speech, Gov. Rick Perry avoided hot-topic issues like abortion, immigration and gun control and focused instead on infrastructure, budget reform and education.
In his Jan. 29, 2013, State of the State speech, Gov. Rick Perry avoided hot-topic issues like abortion, immigration and gun control and focused instead on infrastructure, budget reform and education.

Searching for Clues in Perry's State of the State

The governor stayed away from social issues and some obvious hot-button topics in his State of the State speech this week. But that doesn't mean it wasn't a political speech. He discussed fiscal issues that have been a focus of some conservatives and renewed his vows to battle the federal government on health care.

TribLive at the Austin Club featuring State Sen. Tommy Williams and State Rep. Jim Pitts on financial issues facing the 83rd Texas Legislature.
TribLive at the Austin Club featuring State Sen. Tommy Williams and State Rep. Jim Pitts on financial issues facing the 83rd Texas Legislature.

Pitts and Williams Say School Funding Debate Can Wait

Ongoing school finance litigation will likely prevent the Legislature from discussing education funding issues this session, two Republican budget leaders said at a TribLive event Thursday. 

Charting the Budget

Texas Weekly

The first budgets from the House and Senate are out, marked by their authors as mere starting points. Here's how they compare to each other, and to the current budget.

In his Jan. 29, 2013, State of the State speech, Gov. Rick Perry avoided hot-topic issues like abortion, immigration and gun control and focused instead on infrastructure, budget reform and education.
In his Jan. 29, 2013, State of the State speech, Gov. Rick Perry avoided hot-topic issues like abortion, immigration and gun control and focused instead on infrastructure, budget reform and education.

Perry Talks Water, Tax Relief in State of the State

In his seventh State of the State address, Gov. Rick Perry ignored a number of controversial issues and urged state lawmakers to do the nitty gritty work of government: fund water projects, build more roads, improve education and make the budget more transparent.

Interactive: A Closer Look at Texas' Base Budgets

The Texas Senate and House have released their first drafts of the state's next two-year budget. Lawmakers in both chambers say they wrote lean drafts to give lawmakers the chance to debate how they might use the Rainy Day Fund and other available pots of revenue. Use this interactive to explore how state spending has grown since 2004.

Inside Intelligence: About That Money...

Texas Weekly

For this week's nonscientific survey of insiders in government and politics, we asked questions about the budget, about how lawmakers will spend the money they've got, the chances for a business tax, and the outlook for proposals to trim economic development funds in the governor's office and curtail tricks and diversions used to balance the state's books.

TribWeek: Top Texas News for the Week of 1/7/13

Batheja on growing calls for infrastructure spending, Dehn and Rocha report on voters’ legislative wishes, Murphy counts noses in the new Legislature, KUT’s Philpott sniffs out a push for tax relief, M. Smith tracks House Speaker Joe Straus after his re-election, Kalifa’s lovely time-lapse look at the Legislature’s first day, Aaronson on the Medicaid expansion, Aguilar on hopes for immigration reform, Grissom on the tribulations of Kerry Max Cook, Hamilton looks into a college curriculum battle, and E. Smith’s TribLive interview with Michael Williams: The best of our best for the week of Jan. 7, 2013.

Texas Comptroller Susan Combs, citing a robust economy,  releases the Biennial Revenue Estimate showing that the state is projected to have over $100 billion available for spending in the next biennium.
Texas Comptroller Susan Combs, citing a robust economy, releases the Biennial Revenue Estimate showing that the state is projected to have over $100 billion available for spending in the next biennium.

Dire Budget Estimate Fit Well With Prevailing Politics

The two-year-old revenue forecast used to justify cuts in the current state budget was wrong — and not by a little bit. But the Legislature elected in a conservative sweep in 2010 was in the mood to cut. That's why Comptroller Susan Combs isn't getting much heat for the goof.

Gov. Rick Perry speaks with a reporter on Feb. 21, 2012, a month after dropping his bid for the Republican presidential nomination.
Gov. Rick Perry speaks with a reporter on Feb. 21, 2012, a month after dropping his bid for the Republican presidential nomination.

In Pitching Tax Relief, Perry Again Targets Washington

In a speech calling for tax cuts in the new legislative session, Gov. Rick Perry on Thursday bashed the federal government for its "irresponsible" spending decisions and praised Texas' fiscal restraint.

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst on opening day of 83rd Legislative Session, Jan. 8, 2013
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst on opening day of 83rd Legislative Session, Jan. 8, 2013

Dewhurst: Put Some Money Aside for School Lawsuits

The state should set aside some money for the pending school finance lawsuits, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst said Wednesday. In a wide-ranging interview with the Tribune, he also talked about the state budget, education, immigration, water, transportation, and his hopes and plans for the legislative session that began this week.