A Dangerous Sign for Legislative Transparency

Dick Lavine

Update, 2/1/2017: The Legislative Budget Board’s GEER staff report is out. Read it here. Today at a Senate Finance Committee Hearing, Legislative Budget Board Director Ursula Parks stated that Lt. Governor Dan Patrick had instructed the LBB not to release the Government Effectiveness and Efficiency Report (GEER) this year. The 2015 GEER was full of […]

An Unrealistic Budget Starting Point

Ann Beeson

This week the Senate Finance Committee begins hearings on its proposed budget, Senate Bill 1. The hearings follow the release last week of both the Senate and House draft budgets for the 2018-2019 budget cycle. The Senate budget proposal (Senate Bill 1) is not grounded in reality and is full of drastic cuts to essential […]

Texas Senate Budget Proposal Is Worse Than You Think

Eva DeLuna Castro

On January 24, the Texas Senate Finance Committee will hear invited and public testimony on its 2018 and 2019 budget proposals for the Texas Education Agency, Teacher Retirement System, and other public school and higher education services that receive state funding. Public testimony on health and human services is scheduled for Tuesday, January 31. These […]

Here’s what to look for in today’s Budget Bills

Eva DeLuna Castro

Here’s what we know so far Today, the Senate and House released starting-point budgets for education, health care, and other state-funded services in 2018 and 2019. Each legislative chamber will hold public hearings on the proposals (SB 1 and HB 1) and “mark up” their respective drafts for full Senate and House approval. Then, before […]

Gearing Up for the Texas Revenue Estimate

Eva DeLuna Castro

On Monday, January 9, State Comptroller Glenn Hegar will issue the revenue estimate for 2018-19, as well as update legislators on 2016-17 state revenue collections. This key stage in the budget cycle is when state officials find out how much will be available to invest in schools, higher education, health care, and other services through […]

Are You Ready for Texas Budget Season? An Infographic

Eva DeLuna Castro

If you’re a budget analyst like me, the summer before the Legislature meets is as exciting as watching a rodeo rider get ready for what’s always a wild ride. Even if you’re not a budget analyst, it’s worth paying attention to how and where Texas lawmakers decide to invest the state and federal money that […]

Friday the 13th for Texas Kids

Ann Beeson

The Texas Supreme Court forecast a scary future for Texas kids with their Friday the 13th school finance decision last week. While the Court repeatedly acknowledged serious flaws in how we support public education, they refused to do anything about it. What’s the point of having a right to education enshrined in the Texas Constitution, […]

Maintaining Health Care Status Quo “Not in the Cards” for Texas

CPPP logo

It looks like Texas leaders might be on the clock to get the state’s health care system in line with the new way of doing business across the country. For several years, the federal government has sent billions of dollars to Texas and other states to help with the unpaid hospital bills left behind by […]

What’s at Stake in the School Finance Ruling

Chandra Kring Villanueva

We’re eagerly awaiting the Texas Supreme Court’s school finance ruling, expected almost any day. It’s a good time to consider what it would take for our school finance system to adequately and equitably fund our public schools so all Texas kids have access to a quality education, no matter where they live or what their […]

Tax Day: A Celebration of Service

Brakeyshia Samms

Today marks Tax Day – the deadline by which most Americans file their personal income tax returns. This year we managed to get three extra days to file our taxes thanks to the observance of Emancipation Day in Washington, D.C. on April 15. The hard work of my fellow volunteers in Volunteer Income Tax Assistance […]