Community Eligibility Means More Kids Eat Free

CPPP logo

By Caitlin Shea, Research and KIDS COUNT Intern More kids are eating for free and without stigma thanks to a federal school meal option called the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP), introduced in 143 Texas school districts and nearly 1500 campuses last year. Under CEP, when 40 percent or more of the student body is eligible […]

Misguided Priorities

With four days left in the Texas legislative session, I recall my fervent hope back in January – that lawmakers would put aside their differences and focus on what all Texans believe in. We all want Texas to be the best state for hard-working people and their families. We all want a future for our […]

10 Days Left

CPPP logo

With 10 days left in the 84th Legislative session, there are still a handful of major decisions pending. Here is a preview of upcoming action we’re watching and some of our work from the past week. What we’re watching: The full Senate should consider HB 1624, a good bill that would help people shopping for […]

Down to the Wire

CPPP logo

Hundreds of bills have run out of time in the Texas Legislature, but a flurry of amendments and maneuvers mean several policy solutions – and some policy nightmares – still have a chance of passing. Here is a preview of upcoming action we’re watching and some of our work from the past week. What we’re […]

The Least-Worst Way to Under-Invest

Dick Lavine, Senior Fiscal Analyst at the Center for Public Policy Priorities

Tax cuts are the wrong priority – Texans would be better served if lawmakers increased investments in public services. However, as I told members of the House Ways & Means Committee late Tuesday night, if lawmakers feel they have to cut taxes, then increasing the school homestead exemption (SB 1/SJR 1 by Sen. Jane Nelson) is […]

Flat-Dollar Homestead Exemption Benefits Homeowners and Municipalities

Dick Lavine, Senior Fiscal Analyst at the Center for Public Policy Priorities

In Texas, school districts grant residential homeowners a flat-dollar-amount homestead exemption of $15,000, but local governments are currently prohibited from doing the same. While they can offer percentage exemptions, the ability to offer flat-dollar-amount homestead exemptions would benefit both homeowners and local taxing entities. At present, more than 800 Texas cities, and more than half […]

Headline From the Future: Who Passed All These Short-Sighted Tax Cuts?

Dick Lavine, Senior Fiscal Analyst at the Center for Public Policy Priorities

Public attention is currently focused on the large tax-cut bills that both the House and the Senate passed, in different forms. The House plan, which would reduce the rates of the sales and franchise tax, would cut the amount of General Revenue (GR) available to fund the 2016-17 budget by $4.9 billion. The Senate plan, […]

FAQ: Texas Taxes and Tax Cut Proposals

Brakeyshia Samms, State Policy Fellow

The House and Senate have different tax cut proposals, generating many questions about what these tax cuts could mean for the future of Texas. Here are some answers to frequently asked questions. What are the tax cut proposals? The Senate proposes a $4.5 billion tax-cut package, made up of: SB 1, which would cut property […]

2016-17 Legislative Budget Snapshot

CPPP logo

With just weeks remaining in the regular session of the 84th Legislature, House and Senate conferees are working out the two chambers’ different versions of House Bill 1, the 2016-17 General Appropriations Act. Wherever different levels of funding are proposed, the conferees may choose to go with the lower amount, the higher amount, or compromise […]

DFPS House and Senate Budget Proposals Similar, but Priorities Differ

Brakeyshia Samms, State Policy Fellow

Now that the full Senate has voted out its “marked up” version of the 2016-17 budget, we are one step closer to the end of the 2015 legislative budget process. Conferees on House Bill 1 will resolve differences between the Senate and House proposals before the regular session ends. For child protective services, foster care, […]