"Dishonest scales are an abomination to the Lord,
But a just weight is His delight."
[Author's Note: For background on the '313' program, see here.]
This afternoon, we attended the UT Center for Politics and Governance's event "Inside the Insider Economy: Cronyism in America Today.' Most of the discussion revolved around national issues. During his remarks, however, Professor Nathan Jensen shared some eye-opening observations about various 'economic development' programs in Texas.
Jensen's academic work examines the effectiveness (or lack thereof) of various 'economic development' programs; his Texas-specific observations:
- Over 95% of the companies in Texas that got '313's' were going to expand anyway.
- No correlation between campaign contributions and "Texas enterprise fund" grants.
- Author's Note: So Rick Perry dodges that bullet.
- There is, however, a correlation between the size of the company and the grants received.
- ie. The payouts went to Big Businesses.
- The only thing that swings voters against 'economic development' incentives is discussion of the opportunity cost.
Jensen plans to examine 'economic development' programs across Texas and intends to begin publishing his research next spring. Obviously, that's going to be smack dab in the middle of the legislative session. Could get interesting....