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House Passes an Appraisal Relief Bill – Will the Senate Follow?

Last week, the Texas House finally passed a piece of property tax relief legislation, voting in favor of HB216 by Rep. John Otto (R-Dayton) by a margin of 87-53.  This bill allows appraisal districts a margin of error of 10 percent, instead of the current 5 percent,...

Super-Subsidize Me

 It's getting increasingly easy to get on the government gravy train. From movie studio execs to Ph.D. families, the hand-outs just don't end in this Republican-controlled legislature. Small government. Right... This week, the Texas Senate's Finance Committee is...

Pauken Tries to Push Property Tax Relief Up the Hill

The Tyler Morning Telegraph has a revealing story today (see link or below) in which Tom Pauken, the chair of the Governor's Property Tax Reform Task Force, is quoted stating how disappointed he is with the lack of progress so far.  He speaks candidly about what he...

Pork in the State Budget?

The McAllen Monitor reported that the new $150 billion House budget for the 2008-09 biennium includes some arguably pork barrel expenditures - most of those mentioned are earmarks for projects in the Rio Grande Valley. Among the taxpayer-funded projects mentioned are:...

‘Cut and Run’ Republicans?

So the cut-and-run retreat of Republicans from conservative values and principles continued this week. While the modern French are widely known for a willingness to surrender before a battle is fought, it seems Republicans in the Texas House are even willing to...

Lower Than Expected Business Tax Revenues No Reason to Raise It

Comptroller Susan Combs this week estimated that the new state business tax on gross revenues would bring in $500 to $800 million less than expected. This estimate is based on voluntary submissions made by many affected businesses. However, many business, particularly...

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