The Texas House of Representatives passed Senate Bill 1, the proposed state budget on Friday, with support from State Rep. Tan Parker (R-Flower Mound).
The House spending plan does not raise taxes and allocates $194 billion in overall spending for the next two years, a modest 2.1 percent increase from the previous state budget.
The proposed increase in spending equals less than what would be necessary to account for Texas’ population/inflation increase and comes in beneath the constitutional spending cap, according to Parker.
The House adopted spending plan places great emphasis on educating Texas children. It adds an additional $2.8 billion dollars to K-12 education spending and keeps public education the state’s top funding priority.
House Members also added another $147 million to the Teacher Retirement System pension, increasing the state’s percentage contribution from 6.4 to 6.6 percent.
Additionally, the proposed state budget also invests more resources in higher education, including a $150 million increase to Texas Grants so that more young Texans will have the assistance necessary to achieve a college education.
“Crafting this budget entailed a long day on the House floor and a lot of teamwork,” Parker said. “In the end I am proud of the state budget that my colleagues and I have put forward. I believe that this two-year spending plan reflects Texas’ priorities by not raising taxes and investing heavily in education. We have also extended mental health services to another 6,300 Texans, delivered a pay increase to our state law enforcement officers and strengthened our public pensions.”
The House-passed budget also identified areas to efficiently reduce spending where lawmakers felt strongly that more could be done with fewer dollars. Those decreases aided in increasing other critical areas of spending, such as Parks and Wildlife and Child Protective Services.
Since the Senate has previously adopted their plan, both chambers must now address their small differences in order to advance an identical proposal to the Governor’s desk.
Initially elected in November 2006, Rep. Parker represents both rural and urban parts of Denton County which encompasses the communities of Flower Mound, Argyle, Lantana, Dish, Ponder, Justin, Northlake, Copper Canyon, Double Oak, Bartonville, Trophy Club, Roanoke and portions of Lewisville, Fort Worth, Highland Village, Westlake and Southlake.
Serving in his 4th term in the Texas Legislature, Rep. Parker is focusing his efforts on economic development, job creation, strengthening border security and immigration policy, promoting fiscally responsible government spending, providing a strong public education system, enhancing public safety and protecting family values. Rep. Parker is the current Chairman of the Corrections Committee. He also serves on the Land and Resource Management Committee and the Criminal Procedure Committee.