Spending Limit Legislation Filed

December 17, 2012
State Representative Phil King (R-Weatherford) filed H.B. 237, a bill that would limit spending by the Texas Legislature to not exceed the population growth in Texas when indexed for inflation.  
 
This is important legislation and part of the Gov Perry’s Budget Compact supported by Lt Gov Dewhurst.  We have not heard from the Speaker regarding his commitment to move this legislation.
 
“Texas has done a good job of being fiscally responsible with its spending during the tough economic times we have faced over the past few years,” King explained, “However, it is very important that we implement a conservative spending cap to ensure that even in the good times, Texas does not become irresponsible with its taxpayers’ dollars,” said Rep. King.

H.B. 237 will be considered before the Texas Legislature when it convenes for legislative session on January 8, 2013.  King also plans on filing a constitutional amendment to go along with H.B. 237 to ensure that future legislatures continue Texas’ fiscally prudent tradition.  The constitutional amendment will require 2/3 vote of the legislators.
 
Texas State spending increased by 1,144% from 1960-2010 after adjusting for inflation.  While population growth can account for part of the increase, it cannot fully explain the increase in state spending.  Texas population grew by 162% from 1960-2010 – well below the increase in government spending.
 
But that growth paled in comparison to local governments.  As of 2009, Texas local governments spent #127 billion on the local level and as  of 2011, owed an astronomical $322 in debt (principal plus interest). 
 
We at AFP support spending limits at the state level and want spending limits at the local level which trigger an automatic vote when spending increases beyond the population and inflation increase (or as much as 5%). 
Like this post? Chip in $5 to AFP