With the legislative session in full swing, Texans will soon face a barrage of political propaganda disguised with “conservative-sounding” messaging designed to sell them on anti-taxpayer policies. One of the most prominent will be the effort by state and local politicians pushing to preserve “local control.”

But listen carefully, the “local control” champions will be defending the notion on one condition alone—if the policy preserves governmental authority, not the liberties and rights of Texans.

Local debt transparency, debt limits, property tax limits, property tax revenue limits, appraisal caps, spending limits, ethics reform, conflict of interest disclosure—all wildly popular items with most voters that politicians and bureaucrats plan to kill using “local control” rhetoric.

Consider this: would you defend the authority of a city to allow third-trimester abortions, to invade your home without a warrant, or to read your emails, confiscate your mail, or to ban the lawful possession of firearms? Of course not, that’d be considered local tyranny.

Texans aren’t stupid. Unconditional local control isn’t “good” nor is it a pillar of conservative governance. Limited government is.

After all, governments don’t have “rights”; they have enumerated powers. And at any time, the people of this state, and the elected officials who serve them, can and should limit government in all ways that benefits their residents.

Many Texans believe in individual liberty and the uniquely American notion that governments at all levels are instituted to secure the liberties and rights of the people, not to usurp them.

The next time you hear a policy being sold as preserving “local control”, first ask yourself; does it protect the liberty of Texans or the power of government?

Ross Kecseg

Ross Kecseg was the president of Texas Scorecard. He passed away in 2020. A native North Texan, he was raised in Denton County. Ross studied Economics at Arizona State University with an emphasis on Public Policy and U.S. Constitutional history. Ross was an avid golfer, automotive enthusiast, and movie/music junkie. He was a loving husband and father.