Farewell and Thank You from F. Scott McCown

Dear Friends, Today is my last day at CPPP. I want to thank all our friends and supporters who have fought with us over this past decade for a better Texas, where economic and social opportunity is available in fair measure for all. This fight goes on–for good jobs, for access to health care and […]

High percentage of uninsured hurts Texas’ ranking in CNBC’s Top States for Business

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

Texas lost its top ranking as an attractive location for business in CNBC’s annual list because of its poor “quality of life” performance. Texas fell to #41 in that category because the state has the highest percentage of residents without health insurance, as well as poor air and water quality.  Texas also ranked #35 in […]

2013 Lege Wrap-Up: Adult Basic Education & Literacy

CPPP Leslie Helmcamp

The 2013 Legislature brought big changes to the Adult Basic Education (ABE) and literacy system in Texas. SB 307 by Sen. Joan Huffman, effective September 1, transfers oversight of ABE programs from the Texas Education Agency (TEA) to the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC). The bill is a positive step towards strengthening Texas’ ABE and literacy programs […]

2013 Lege Wrap-Up: Payday Lending Reform

The 2013 regular legislative session ended without the passage of any payday and auto title lending reform. As a result, the Legislature missed a critical opportunity to protect Texas consumers from excessive fees and unnecessary auto repossessions by failing to pass SB 1247, the omnibus reform bill filed by Sen. John Carona.  This bill included the […]

Budget Conference Committee Proposal Doesn’t Account For Growth

With just a few days left in the 2013 legislative regular session, details and summary information on the 2013 and 2014-15 state budget deals are finally starting to emerge. The conference committee report for Senate Bill 1, the General Appropriations Act for 2014-15, includes $94.6 billion in General Revenue spending, and an All Funds budget of […]

To Improve Financial Stability of SNAP Households, TX Should Remove Asset Test

Working for a Better Texas

By Jeanie Donovan When a Texas family is struggling to make ends meet or having trouble keeping food on the table, they may turn to SNAP (formerly food stamps) to help them through that difficult economic time.  Like most safety net programs, SNAP is “means-tested” to ensure that only applicants with limited resources receive assistance. […]

OPED–Lawmakers have an opportunity to do more for Texas kids

“When it comes to funding priorities for Texas children, legislators appear to be facing similar tough choices as they work to finalize the state budget. The Senate and House have proposed 2014-15 budgets that, at first glance, seem to highlight different priorities for Texas kids. For example, the House proposes more state money, about $1 […]

Open Letter to State Budget Conferees

Today, we sent a letter to the budget conferees outlining our recommendations for reconciling the differences between the House and the Senate regarding health and human services and public and higher education. The conference committee will probably finish making its decisions by Friday, May 10. Only a few days are left for you to make […]

HB 2662 Would Help Texas Students Build Brighter Financial Futures

Last week, the House Public Education committee heard Rep. Marsha Farney’s bill (HB 2662) to create a semester-long personal financial literacy course required for high school graduation and I provided testimony in support of this bill. A stand-alone personal financial literacy (PFL) course in high school would better equip Texas students with real-world skills that […]

Tax Time: An Important Season To Build Texans’ Financial Futures

Tax season is here. For many Texas families, the substantial tax refund they will get back is vital to their overall budget.  Last tax season, 2.6 million Texans claimed the EITC, earning back $6.9 billion or approximately $2,600 per filer.  Because tax refunds represent the largest lump-sum payment for the entire year, tax-time creates an […]