Texas to Borrow Billions?

What to know: This weekend, Texas voters will decide on $8.5 billion in new debt being pitched by cities, counties, school districts, and community colleges. School districts want to borrow the most ($6.5 billion).

The TPPF take: Voters should remember: There is no such thing as a free lunch. Any money borrowed will have to be paid back with interest, likely meaning higher future taxes.

“Texas local governments already owe more than $375 billion total, and yet many of the most indebted entities are asking to put more on the taxpayer credit card. This sort of obvious addiction to debt should be quite telling to voters,” says TPPF’s James Quintero.

For more on local debt, click here.

A Win for Families

What to know: A bill containing reforms to Child Protective Services in Texas has passed both the House and the Senate, and is on its way to the governor’s desk to be signed into law.

The TPPF take: House Bill 567 builds on earlier reforms and makes our CPS system more compassionate and responsive.

“One of the main goals of the Family First Prevention Services Act is to reduce the number of children removed into foster care by providing services to preserve families at risk of separation before removal becomes necessary,” says TPPF’s Andrew Brown. “This is a long-overdue change to the culture of child welfare practice.”

For more on HB 567, click here.

End Energy Discrimination

What to know: The Securities and Exchange Commission is trying to bring some order to ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) investing.

The TPPF take: Big banks and investment firms are discriminating against responsible energy producers — and worst of all, this is happening right here in Texas.

“The green movement in the United States isn’t helping the environment. It’s actually forcing countries that need power to import energy from environmentally irresponsible countries, thus leading to more pollution,” says oil and gas executive Shad Frazier in a guest op-ed for The Cannon Online. “Meanwhile, the American energy industry is doing everything we can to support America’s global environmental leadership while providing reliable, cheap power. We have reduced harmful air pollution by 77% in the last 50 years — and, for those concerned about climate change, cut CO2 emissions by 18% in the last 10 years through natural gas use.”

For more on ESG investing, click here.