Seal of the Senate of the State of Texas Welcome to the Official Website for the Texas Senate
Seal of the Senate of the State of Texas
Welcome to the official website for the
Texas Senate
Senator Jane Nelson: District 12
May 17, 2016
Contact: Melissa Duncan, Communications Director

On the agenda: Spending Limit

The Senate Finance Committee will convene at 10:00 a.m. to take up its interim charge relating to the spending limit. To watch the hearing online, click here:

Spending Limit Highlights

  • The committee has been directed to examine options and make recommendations for strengthening restriction on appropriations established in Article VIII Section 22 of the state constitution, including related procedures defined in statute and consider options for ensuring available revenues above the spending limit are reserved for tax relief.
  • Currently the spending limit is tied to the rate of growth of the Texas economy, which is defined as the growth in Texas total personal income pursuant to Texas law. FY 16-17 budget grew by 2.9% percent of all funds (2.3% if excluding tax relief) and is currently $2.1 billion below the spending limit in general revenue capacity.
  • The Legislative Budget Board (LBB) adopted the current spending limit of 11.68% as forecasted by the Comptroller on December 1, 2014, which applies to the current FY16-17 budget.
  • The Legislative Budget Board will meet before December 1 to adopt the spending limit for the FY 18-19 biennium.
  • Invited testimony includes the Office of the Comptroller, Legislative Budget Board, The Perryman Group, Texas Taxpayers and Research Association, Texas Public Policy Foundation, and the Center for Public Policy Priorities. Public testimony also will be taken.

Statement from Senator Nelson: "The spending limit is a useful tool that ensures the state does not grow government at a rate higher than the growth of the Texas economy. Last session, we were able to both meet the needs of our state and stay within the spending limit. I look forward to a healthy discussion about making sure our budget remains fiscally responsible."