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 ...

House, Senate Negotiators Reach Deal on Budget

Sens. Lois Kolkhorst, Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa, Jane Nelson, Charles Schwertner, Joan Huffman and Reps. Larry Gonzales, Sarah Davis, Sylvester Turner, John Otto and Trent Ashby make up the 2015 budget conference committee.
Sens. Lois Kolkhorst, Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa, Jane Nelson, Charles Schwertner, Joan Huffman and Reps. Larry Gonzales, Sarah Davis, Sylvester Turner, John Otto and Trent Ashby make up the 2015 budget conference committee.

Top House and Senate negotiators sealed up the final unresolved issues on a two-year budget deal on Thursday evening, including removing controversial language that would have killed a proposed Dallas-Houston bullet train.

Republican Comptroller candidate Glenn Hegar speaks with Evan Smith at TribLive on May 29, 2014.
Republican Comptroller candidate Glenn Hegar speaks with Evan Smith at TribLive on May 29, 2014.

Texas Court Ruling Could Undermine Major State Taxes

A tax case started by a chain of movie theaters could cut billions from the state's franchise tax, and could affect the sales tax, too, state Comptroller Glenn Hegar said Wednesday. “The tagline is that the 3rd Court of Appeals ruling really turns two of the major funding streams for the state of Texas on its head,” Hegar said.

 

State Comptroller Glenn Hegar says his revenue estimate to divvy up for the 2016-17 budget will be about $113 billion.
State Comptroller Glenn Hegar says his revenue estimate to divvy up for the 2016-17 budget will be about $113 billion.

Analysis: For Legislators, an Extra Incentive to Finish Budget

If state budget writers can't get a deal on the budget during the regular session, they'll have to come back to finish. And with the state economy slowing down, going into overtime could mean less money for tax breaks and state programs. State Comptroller Glenn Hegar would start a special session on the budget with a new forecast of the state’s economy.

Sens. Lois Kolkhorst, Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa, Jane Nelson, Charles Schwertner, Joan Huffman and Reps. Larry Gonzales, Sarah Davis, Sylvester Turner, John Otto and Trent Ashby make up the 2015 budget conference committee.
Sens. Lois Kolkhorst, Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa, Jane Nelson, Charles Schwertner, Joan Huffman and Reps. Larry Gonzales, Sarah Davis, Sylvester Turner, John Otto and Trent Ashby make up the 2015 budget conference committee.

A Closer Look at Budget Conference Committee Members

The budget conference committee will hash out a compromise of the chamber’s respective 2016-17 budget plans. Committee members include two Democrats who rank as the most experienced budget negotiators on the panel.

State Rep. Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, celebrates passage of his tax cut measures during the House session April 28, 2015.
State Rep. Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, celebrates passage of his tax cut measures during the House session April 28, 2015.

House Passes $4.9 Billion Tax Cut

The Texas House tentatively approved a $4.9 billion tax relief plan Tuesday that includes a cut to the state’s sales tax, marking a clear line in the sand against the Senate, which favors property tax cuts.

 

State Rep. Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, discusses his border security bill.
State Rep. Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, discusses his border security bill.

Texas House GOP Caucus Endorses Sales Tax Cuts

With the Texas House set to vote on tax cuts, almost all of the Republicans in that chamber — 90 of 98 — signed a letter released Saturday endorsing sales tax cuts over the property tax cuts favored by the Texas Senate. "Unlike property tax cuts, which cost the state budget and grow in cost with time, the sales tax reduction simply means the state collects less," they wrote. 

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick after votes on first reading of SB #11 March 18th, 2015
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick after votes on first reading of SB #11 March 18th, 2015

Senate Announces Budget Negotiation Team

Lt. Governor Dan Patrick has named the Senate lineup of budget negotiators who will meet with House counterparts and hash out a final version of the two-year state budget.

State Sen. Kelly Hancock, R-North Richland Hills, speaking at the Texas Public Policy Foundation legislative orientation session on Jan. 7, 2015.
State Sen. Kelly Hancock, R-North Richland Hills, speaking at the Texas Public Policy Foundation legislative orientation session on Jan. 7, 2015.

Analysis: A Senate Trying to Regulate Its Own Spending

The Texas Senate wants to limit growth in the state budget — by adding a fifth spending limit to state law. In addition to the current limit commonly referred to as the state's spending cap, there are also limits on issuing debt, on certain assistance grants and on spending more than what lawmakers have.