On Thursday, the Texas Tribune will host a discussion presented in part by the unlimited-government association, the Texas Municipal League. Guests include Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price and Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, who as evidenced by the past, are likely to defend TML’s policies using misleading “local control” rhetoric.

Recently, Price publicly came out in defense of TML’s hot-button issues; protecting taxpayer-funded government lobbying, pushing government-run passenger rail (i.e. TexRail), and opposing stricter limits on the growth of property tax burdens.

TML’s 200-plus-item legislative program is rooted in one dominant principle—defending and expanding the power of local government. Their agenda is flush with destructive policy positions such as opposing stronger revenue and spending limits for cities, property-appraisal caps, and repealing requirements that force governments to obtain voter approval prior to breaking such safeguards.

Even more offensive (although not surprising) is TML’s opposition to prohibitions on all forms of taxpayer-funded government lobbying, either directly or through agents such as themselves.

TML is lusting after larger state and federal subsidies for wasteful, non-road transportation experiments that rarely reduce traffic congestion such as government-run passenger rail, bike lanes, and “beautification” schemes that serve as legacy accomplishments for politicians with little utility for rush-hour commuters.

They’re pushing for expanded taxing authority and “greater flexibility” of how public funds can be diverted to non-core services. They also want to remove restrictions on the ability of law-enforcement to operate “unmanned aircraft” (i.e. drones).

Again, any effort to limit the power of local politicians will be opposed—nearly any expansion of such power, they’ll support.

As evidenced by the past, it’s likely Rawlings and Price will continue to loyally aid TML in rationalizing why giving local politicians like themselves more power is somehow in the best interest of Texans, even though TML’s agenda objectively proves it is not.

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.