As the 88th Legislative Session comes to a close, lawmakers must still approve a state budget for the next biennium—but it doesn’t have to amount to the largest spending increase in 20 years.

Lawmakers from the House and Senate have presented a conference committee report for House Bill 1 (the budget) that Texans for Fiscal Responsibility President Tim Hardin said “represents perhaps the largest increase in spending in Texas history [and] is certainly the biggest since 2003.”

“Voting in favor of the Conference Committee Report to House Bill 1 is a vote to greatly expand the size and scope of the Texas government,” said Hardin.

This final version of HB 1 increases spending to $321 billion, a 21.3 percent jump from the previous biennium’s appropriations. 

Although lawmakers have been working with a historic budget surplus—that is, they took too much in taxes from citizens—of nearly $33 billion, they have not allocated the majority of it toward new property tax relief, as Hardin and others have advocated.  

According to Hardin, “The property tax relief that has steadily improved throughout the session due to taxpayer pressure still falls short of the promised ‘largest property tax cut in Texas history.’” 

Instead, [lawmakers] have proposed perhaps the largest increase in spending in Texas history [and] the potential revival of the biggest corporate welfare boondoggle in Texas history, increased bureaucrat salaries and their own pensions, and overly funded our woke higher education system and unaccountable government schools.

“Taxpayers simply deserve better,” said Hardin.

Indeed, House and Senate lawmakers have overwhelmingly voted to approve a new corporate welfare program disguised as “economic incentives” and increased funding for higher education while the House refuses to curb its panoply of woke programs. 

The 88th Legislative Session ends May 29. 

Sydnie Henry

A born and bred Texan, Sydnie serves as the Managing Editor for Texas Scorecard. She graduated from Patrick Henry College with a B.A. in Government and is utilizing her research and writing skills to spread truth to Texans.