Tuesday, November 13, 2018

#TXLEGE: School Finance Reform and Economic Growth

"Train up a child in the way he should go,
And when he is old he will not depart from it."
Proverbs 22:6

Obviously, school finance is going to be a MAJOR topic next session.  It's been a major problem for a long time, and now is as good a time as any to address it.  This can be either a good thing or a VERY bad thing.  Devil's in the details.

Yesteday, TPPF released a paper about the relationship between the school finance system and statewide economic growth.

TL,DR version: Texas' inefficient school finance system is a drag on economic growth.  This is primarily due to overreliance on local property taxes.  Getting school taxes under control will lead to more jobs and a lower cost of living.

Specifically, TPPF examined two scenario where new funding sources were used to buy down school district taxes.  In the first scenario analyzed doing so through spending restraint at the state level.  This is the school district tax proposal TPPF released earlier this year.

Both scenarios increased economic growth, while producing other good outcomes.  Keep in mind, these numbers are compounding.  Small annual changes build upon each other, which produce big changes over time.  Specifically:

Bottom Line:  There are better ways to do school finance, and they could lead to significantly greater economic growth....


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