February 1, 2017 [Download the letter]
The Honorable Greg Abbott, Governor of Texas
The Honorable Dan Patrick, Lieutenant Governor of Texas
The Honorable Joe Straus, Speaker of the Texas House
Dear Governor Abbott, Lt. Governor Patrick, and Speaker Straus:
The supplemental budget for the current biennium means that both the Texas House and Senate are violating the spirit of the Republican Party platform call to keep spending less than population growth combined with inflation. As numbers compiled by the Texas Public Policy Foundation indicate, if either the proposed House or Senate supplemental to the 2016-2017 budget is passed, it will mean that the Legislature did not, in fact, pass a conservative budget in 2015. Worse, it will set an even more unaffordable floor for the next budget.
For the next biennium, Texas House budget writers have proposed spending that exceeds both the Comptroller’s official revenue estimate and the spirit of the Texas GOP platform’s defined conservative levels. The Texas Senate, meanwhile, has put forward a 2018-2019 budget that lives within available revenues and the population growth plus inflation limit – the spending limit strongly supported by taxpayers, grassroots conservative activists, and the Republican Party platform.
It is inexcusable for House budget writers to consider using the Economic Stabilization Fund (Rainy Day Fund) rather than reduce spending. Spending down the fund just because it exists is not wise, nor fiscally conservative.
We call on you to reduce the size of the 2016-2017 supplemental budget and adopt a 2018-2019 budget that is at the very least as conservative as the one proposed by the Texas Senate. Anything beyond that will be an affront to taxpayers, conservative activists, and Republican voters.
For Liberty – for Texas,
Michael Quinn Sullivan
President, Empower Texans
Executive Director, Grassroots America
President, Texas Eagle Forum
Toni & Tom Fabry
Chairman & Treasurer, Frisco TEA Party
Mary & Dale Huls
Executive Board Members, Clear Lake TEA Party
Founder/Past President, Llano Tea Party
Robin & Jim Lennon
President & Director, Kingwood TEA Party
President, NE Tarrant TEA Party
Exec. Director/President, East Texans for Liberty
President, Kaufman County TEA Party
Director, New Revolution Now; Austin TEA Party