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Building on their successful research of the Real Texas Budget and the Conservative Texas Budget, the Texas Public Policy Foundation released a paper today detailing the need for tax and expenditure limits to secure economic freedom for the future of Texas.

In a series entitled “Reforming Texas’ Tax and Expenditure Limits,” the Lone Star State’s premier conservative think tank documents the growth of state government’s “footprint” over the last decade and its effect on our economy.

The study notes what’s at stake, “Texas’ total government spending will likely increase by 64 percent to $204 billion from 2004 to 2015, and burdening Texans with an ever-expanding footprint of state government.”

In light of this massive expansion in government, the prescription is simple: reasonable limits on growth—through reform of the state’s tax and revenue limits (TELs).

For Texans this means one thing: increased prosperity. The study also lays out what is to gain by controlling the costs of state government, “If total spending had increased based on this recommended TEL reform, Texans would fund an $11.5 billion smaller government in 2014—allowing $1,700 more in the pockets of Texas families of four.”

We’ve reported before on the need for strict constitutional spending limits. The current constitutional spending limits make for better political theater than actual fiscal controls.

Government that lives within its means will better serve Texans. A strict limit on government growth prescribed by TEL reform will protect citizens from the abuses of legislator-lobby collusion for taxpayer dollars and provide truth-in-advertising in state spending limits. Reform that is simple, transparent, and unable to be sleighed by unscrupulous appropriators will secure a path toward even greater economic prosperity for the Lone Star State.