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Press Release
April 7, 2014
Contact: Jennifer Saenz
(512) 463-0120 office
(512) 497-9411 cell
Chairman Hinojosa Announces Senate IGR Committee Interim Hearing
Thursday, April 17th in Houston, TX
WHAT: Senate Committee on Intergovernmental Relations Interim Hearing
WHEN: Thursday, April 17, 2014 at 10:00 a.m.
WHERE: The University of Houston
4800 Calhoun, University Center
Houston, Texas 77004
WHY: To take invited and public testimony on the following interim charges:
  1. Study and make recommendations to increase transparency in the authorization, issuance, and appropriation of debt at the local level. Make recommendations that will increase citizen awareness and understanding of a local government's fiscal state. Analyze reforms such as requiring local governments to move bond elections to a uniform date coinciding with state general elections, and requiring local governments to publicly post their annual budgets, annual financial reports, and check registers online. Survey other states' initiatives to increase transparency in the process of local governments incurring new debt obligations.
  2. Examine the immediate and long-term fiscal impact that bonds and other types of obligations issued by local governments have on current and future generations of taxpayers. Specifically analyze whether local governments should be required to use ballot language that includes their current outstanding debt, existing per capita debt, current debt service, and any increase the ballot measure would have on property taxes. Make recommendations on additional ballot language that will better inform voters of their local governments' current and future fiscal states.