AUSTIN, TX - State Senator Van Taylor, along with Senators Burton, Creighton, and Hall, today filed SJR 25, the Spending Cap Protection Act, a Constitutional Amendment requiring a two-thirds supermajority vote of both houses of the Legislature to bust the spending cap. This change raises the vote limit from its current threshold of a majority vote within each chamber.
Two years ago, as incoming members of the Texas Senate, Senators Taylor, Burton, Creighton, and Hall penned a commentary piece opposing efforts to bust the spending cap.
"Two years ago, I was proud to work with Senators Konni Burton, Brandon Creighton, and Bob Hall to fight off efforts to bust the spending cap. As the Legislative Budget Board (LBB) is scheduled to release the spending cap for the upcoming biennium this afternoon, we are back this time with a Constitutional Amendment to strengthen and protect the spending cap," stated Taylor. "Texas has benefited greatly from the constitutional spending cap approved by voters in 1978. Conservatives should not have to worry and fight every budget season simply for the Legislature to do its job and stay within the spending bounds of the Constitution."
The current majority vote requirement to bust the spending cap falls below other constitutionally-required limits relating to spending or debt authorization. For example, a two-thirds supermajority of each chamber is required to appropriate funds from the Economic Stabilization Fund (Article III, Section 49(g)) and to authorize an election for state-supported debt (Article III, Section 49). In addition, a four-fifths supermajority of each chamber is required to appropriate funds in excess of the Comptroller's biennial revenue estimate (Article III, Section 49(a)).
SJR 25 aligns the vote threshold for busting the spending cap with these other requirements, making the Texas Constitution consistent on matters of taxpayer protection and state spending.
Senator Taylor continued, "While the conservative grassroots have politicians in Austin terrified by the concept of busting the spending cap, procedurally this mandate can be easily overrun by tax and spend special interests. This proposed amendment to the Texas Constitution sets a higher bar to bust the spending cap, aligning it with other constitutionally-required limits and providing greater protection for taxpayers."
A seventh generation Texan, local small businessman, and decorated Marine Officer, Van Taylor serves the majority of Collin County and a portion of Dallas County in the Texas Senate where he is widely recognized as a conservative leader. Taylor serves as Vice-Chairman of both the Nominations Committee and the Sunset Advisory Commission. He is also as a member of the Education, Health and Human Services, and Transportation Committees as well as the interim Committee on Property Tax Reform and Relief. Van and his wife, Anne, married after his return from Iraq and are the proud parents of three young girls. Van and his family reside in Plano near the land his great-grandfather farmed during the Great Depression.
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