A Conservative Texas Budget is a budget that does not increase by more than the change in the key metric of population growth plus inflation. Limiting the state’s budget growth to this key metric allows legislators to fund government while not overly burdening Texans with higher taxes. If the 2017 budget increases remain below population growth plus inflation, joining the 2015 budget, the Texas Legislature has a grand opportunity to pass a historic third consecutive Conservative Texas Budget in 2019.
The Legislature starts each legislative session with an estimate of how much tax revenue is available to appropriate. Although legislators cannot appropriate more than projected taxpayer dollars collected based on the Texas Constitution’s balanced budget amendment, spending ultimately determines taxes collected. Be- cause taxes matter to Texans’ economic activity, spending restraint is preferable.