"Wealth gained by dishonesty will be diminished,
But he who gathers by labor will increase."
[Update: Empower Texans has more here.]
The contrast couldn't be stronger. Yesterday, we reported on the Texas Senate's moving towards zero-based budgeting. Joe Straus' reaction:
AUSTIN — House Speaker Joe Straus warned lawmakers Tuesday that, with revenue tightening and an urgent need to selectively boost spending on protecting children and pensioners, writing a Texas budget next year will be “a significant challenge.”Translation: In the event of an unfavorable school finance ruling, hang onto your wallets; we would not be surprised to see the House advocate for either a tax increase or a major raid on the rainy day fund.
Straus also noted that the Texas Supreme Court, in yet another school finance lawsuit, may soon rule against the state. That could “potentially require a significant infusion of additional state funds,” he said.
The Teacher Retirement System’s health insurance program continues to be underfunded, even after lawmakers gave it more money last year, Straus said.
“A sustainable, long-term solution is still needed,” he said.
While lawmakers want to keep Texas’ reputation intact as a low-tax state, Straus urged House members to look for creative solutions to its fiscal challenges — and keep an eye on places where it needs to spend more.
[Author's Note: Emphasis added.]