The Texas Legislature made a promise to the state’s most financially needy high school seniors in 1999: Money will not be a barrier to your higher education at a public college or university if you stay out of trouble, complete certain courses and graduate from high school. But the budget crisis has thrown that pledge into question, and thousands of students have put their college plans on hold for now.Full Story
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 ...
Where did the time go? Texas legislators are a mere nine days away from the end of the session and still have to finish work on several bills to finish up their budget for the two-year period that starts September 1.Full Story
After days of debate, the House finally passed a key fiscal matters bill — Senate Bill 1811 — that raises necessary funds to balance the proposed budget.Full Story
After a chaotic day of stops and starts and private meetings, Texas lawmakers don't have a budget deal yet. Unless key pieces of legislation are passed soon, lawmakers are almost guaranteed to be back this summer for a special session.Full Story
Senate Finance Chair Steve Ogden, R-Bryan, says there is still no consensus on education funding or SB 1811, a revenue bill that would balance the state budget. Meanwhile, GOP members of the House left a caucus meeting without divulging details of what they discussed and then the House postponed consideration of two fiscal bills critical to the budget until tomorrow. "So, we're stuck," Ogden said.Full Story
State reps will try to hang a grab bag of amendments onto Senate Bills 1811 and 1581 — two critical pieces of legislation the House takes up today that could determine whether a budget is passed and a special session averted. Click here for our liveblog of the action.Full Story
As of Wednesday afternoon, two powerful budget figures differed on the status of the budget process.Full Story
If the House doesn't pass legislation that adds $2.6 billion to state revenue with a mix of delayed payments, increased penalties, government efficiencies and the like, the state budget won't balance and a special session will probably be required, House and Senate leaders said today.Full Story
Comptroller Susan Combs added $1.2 billion to her estimate of state revenues, making that much more money available to budget writers who are scrambling for cash. She said the state's income is up.Full Story
House and Senate negotiators have reached agreement on everything in the state budget except for public and higher education and a section of general provisions that can be used later to make sure the numbers in the budget balance.Full Story
The Texas Senate approved a $3.97 billion draw on the state's Rainy Day Fund to cover a deficit of the same size in the current budget, but not before rejecting efforts to add on a larger amount to help balance the 2012-13 budget.Full Story
Aaronson on the latest attack on Planned Parenthood, Aguilar previews the sanctuary cities debate, Grissom on a death row inmate's unsuccessful appeal, Hamilton on the UT System's faculty "productivity" data dump, Philpott on the prospect of lawsuits over education cuts, Ramsey on puppies and other distractions, Ramshaw on a tobacco fight, my interview with the presidents of UT-Austin and Texas A&M, M. Smith on a former State Board of Ed member who may have violated state ethics law, Stiles interactively displays the effects of House redistricting and Tan on the Senate budget end game: The best of our best content from May 2 to 6, 2011.Full Story
No time to follow all the happenings of the Texas Legislature? We've made it easier for you with our weekly recaps of the action under the dome.Full Story
The House is sending its five budget conferees — Reps. Jim Pitts, John Otto, Sylvester Turner, John Zerwas and Myra Crownover — off to negotiate with the Senate, but they want to tie their hands on certain issues, instructing them on what's acceptable to add, subtract or leave alone when they talk with the other side.Full Story
The Texas Senate passed a budget this week for the next biennium, but only after nearly suffering a meltdown. Senate Finance Chairman Steve Ogden has blamed some of the drama on the meddling of outside interest groups.Full Story
The $176 billion budget was approved along party lines, with all 19 Republicans voting for it and all 12 Democrats voting against.Full Story
The Texas Senate voted 19-12 along party lines Wednesday to pass its own version of HB 1, the House’s budget for the next biennium. Not only did the Democrats lose their power to stop the bill under the traditional two-thirds rule, but they may have lost their chance for a Democrat to join the conference committee where five senators and five representatives will develop a compromise bill.
Over the vehement objections of Democrats, the Texas Senate today passed a state budget for the next biennium by a straight party-line vote of 19 to 12.Full Story
In this week's TribCast, Evan, Ross, Reeve and Ben discuss the Texas Senate, the budget being considered by the Texas Senate, and the influence of outside groups on the Texas Senate.Full Story
The Texas Tribune is liveblogging the Senate's debate over its substitute for House Bill 1, the proposed budget for the next biennium.Full Story
It’s big tobacco vs. little in the effort to smoke out new revenue for the Texas budget. Large tobacco companies, which fork over half a billion dollars to the state every year as part of a 1998 lawsuit settlement, want small cigarette manufacturers to pay their share.Full Story
It might not matter, in the end, whether the Senate wants to use some of the Rainy Day Fund to balance the budget. The House isn’t likely to go along unless the proposition is delivered on a tea cart pushed by Gov. Rick Perry and third-party conservative groups who have been hounding lawmakers to hold the line.Full Story