Tribpedia: Texas Comptroller Of Public Accounts

Tribpedia

The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts is the state government's chief financial officer, serving as its highest-ranking tax collector, accountant, revenue estimator and treasurer. The comptroller is elected statewide and serves four-year terms.

The Comptroller's Office has more than 3,500 employees and 30 field offices across the state. Its website contains numerous resources for businesses and residents ...

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First Wind, Now Gas: Tax Breaks Face Scrutiny

A natural gas compressor station located near La Grange, Texas, on Jan. 29, 2014.
A natural gas compressor station located near La Grange, Texas, on Jan. 29, 2014.

After calling for an end to subsidies for wind energy production, the Texas comptroller will soon release a report that could rekindle debate surrounding Texas’ largest incentive for natural gas producers. The tax exemption for "high cost" gas has shaved more than $7 billion off operators' tax bills since 2008.

Comptroller Susan Combs’ office recently researched the accuracy of tax revenue estimates going back 40 years.
Comptroller Susan Combs’ office recently researched the accuracy of tax revenue estimates going back 40 years.

Comptroller Study Shows Difficulty of Predicting Future

The comptroller's office recently researched the accuracy of its two-year revenue estimates going back 40 years and five comptrollers. Comptroller Susan Combs' 2011 forecast, which underestimated state revenue by billions of dollars, has become an issue in this year's race to replace her.

Keller ISD Superintendent Randy Reid spoke during an Aug. 11, 2014, town hall meeting, where attendees debated whether to put a $175 million bond up to Keller ISD voters in the general election.
Keller ISD Superintendent Randy Reid spoke during an Aug. 11, 2014, town hall meeting, where attendees debated whether to put a $175 million bond up to Keller ISD voters in the general election.

Series: Bypassed by the Miracle

Check out Bypassed by the Miracle, our seven-part series on the people and communities that have missed out on Texas' economic success or are finding that it comes at a price. You can also read our related Falling Behind and Hurting For Work series.

Leander ISD's Whitestone Elementary School, shown on Aug. 21, 2014, has six portable classrooms to help with increased student enrollment.  District officials say If the district couldn't use capital appreciation bonds to borrow money, it would have to put more students in portables.
Leander ISD's Whitestone Elementary School, shown on Aug. 21, 2014, has six portable classrooms to help with increased student enrollment. District officials say If the district couldn't use capital appreciation bonds to borrow money, it would have to put more students in portables.

Swelling Districts Find Costly Way to Grow Campuses

Leander and other fast-growing school districts have relied heavily on a controversial financing tool called capital appreciation bonds to borrow money to expand even as they bump up against state limits on school district debt.

Keller ISD Superintendent Randy Reid spoke during an Aug. 11, 2014, town hall meeting, where attendees debated whether to put a $175 million bond up to Keller ISD voters in the general election.
Keller ISD Superintendent Randy Reid spoke during an Aug. 11, 2014, town hall meeting, where attendees debated whether to put a $175 million bond up to Keller ISD voters in the general election.

Critics Charge Local Bond Elections Lack Transparency

Texas voters approve billions of dollars in new local debt each year. A growing group of critics argues that voters wouldn't be so agreeable if they were more clearly informed of the debt that's already owed in their name.

Forensic chemist Rusty White completes a workout during a cross-training class at the DPS office in Austin on May 14, 2014.
Forensic chemist Rusty White completes a workout during a cross-training class at the DPS office in Austin on May 14, 2014.

Law Helps State Workers Find Time for Fitness

Since the passage of a 2007 law allowing state employees a 30-minute exercise break three times per week, several state agencies have begun offering popular lunchtime workout programs, like weight training and Zumba.

Paul McGuire, with the federal Bureau of Land Management, speaks with landowners in Clay County on April 28, 2014.
Paul McGuire, with the federal Bureau of Land Management, speaks with landowners in Clay County on April 28, 2014.

Tax Collection Moves Forward Despite BLM Dispute

While the federal Bureau of Land Management spends the next several years figuring out whether it owns some 90,000 acres of land along a 116-mile stretch of the Red River, landowners will continue paying taxes, at least for now.

State Sen. Glenn Hegar, R-Katy, speaks to state Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston.
State Sen. Glenn Hegar, R-Katy, speaks to state Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston.

A Big Idea, With a Big Price Tag

Texas voters don't like their property taxes — some of the highest in the United States — and Republican Glenn Hegar is right there with them. But his opponent in the comptroller's race, Mike Collier, is talking up the likely result: a huge increase in the state's sales tax — already one of the nation's highest.

GOP candidates for state comptroller. Clockwise, from top left: former gubernatorial candidate Debra Medina, former state Rep. Raul Torres, state Sen. Glenn Hegar and state Rep. Harvey Hilderbran.
GOP candidates for state comptroller. Clockwise, from top left: former gubernatorial candidate Debra Medina, former state Rep. Raul Torres, state Sen. Glenn Hegar and state Rep. Harvey Hilderbran.

Comptroller Hopefuls Tout Reviving Clinton-Era Reviews

More than 20 years after then-Texas Comptroller John Sharp launched a popular program to cut government waste, the candidates to be the next comptroller are talking about reviving it. But the reasons that state lawmakers stripped the office of that power in 2003 may remain a roadblock.

Texas Comptroller Susan Combs
Texas Comptroller Susan Combs

Mussels, Lizard, Snake on Comptroller's Research List

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The Texas Comptroller's Office will use $5 million appropriated by state legislators to fund university-centered research on three species at risk of being classified as endangered or threatened by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. They include freshwater mussels, the spot-tailed earless lizard and the desert massasaugas, a type of snake.