Gov. Perry - A Fiscal Conservative

As the national and global economies struggle to recover from their financial woes, Texas is displaying strength that is built on conservative fiscal discipline.

  • Overcame Budget Shortfall. Back in 2003, Texas overcame a $10 billion budget hole without raising taxes by making tough choices to effectively prioritize and cut spending. Six years later, our Rainy Day Fund is on its way to $8 billion.
  • Reducing Spending. There have been only two state budgets since World War II that cut general revenue spending in Texas, and Gov. Perry signed them both. Gov. Perry has line-item vetoed more than $3 billion in unnecessary spending from state budgets, more than all other Texas governors combined.
  • Cutting Business Taxes. During the 81st Legislature, Gov. Perry called for and signed HB 4765, which exempts small businesses with less than $1 million in gross revenues from the state’s franchise tax, up from $300,000. This is expected to spare 40,000 small local employers from paying any franchise tax, saving them $172 million in taxes, money which now can go to paying employees, expanding their businesses and otherwise bolstering the Texas economy. In 2006, Gov. Perry also signed legislation, which has to date saved Texans an estimated $16.4 billion in property taxes.

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Read Related Press Releases, Blog Posts and News Articles about Gov. Perry's Fiscal Conservative Principles

Obamacare: Nothing to Celebrate

Two years ago today, President Obama signed into law his vision of health care reform, a far-ranging and ever-more-expensive collection of price fixing and individual mandates that will forever be known as Obamacare.

Now, according to tradition, cotton is known as the gift for a second anniversary. But what do you get a federal government that wants to control everything? Unfortunately, the answer is more of your hard earned tax dollars.

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Rick Perry: A Texan’s ‘exceptionalism’

June 24, 2011
Washington Post
George F. Will
Between 2001 and last June, Texas — a right-to-work state that taxes neither personal income nor capital gains — added more jobs than the other 49 states combined. And since the recovery began two Junes ago, Texas has created 37 percent of America’s net new jobs.

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Texas wins in U.S. economy shift

June 21, 2011
Dennis Cauchon
Texas became the USA's second-largest economy during the past decade — displacing New York and perhaps heading one day toward challenging California — in one of the biggest economic shifts in the past half-century. The dramatic realignment of the nation's economy was illustrated by North Carolina, Virginia and Georgia all overtaking one-time industrial powerhouse Michigan in economic size from 2000 to 2010. The economic winners of the last decade are states that focus on raw materials, government and senior citizens. The big losers are places that make things — industrial states and even California. USA TODAY examined each state's gross domestic product to determine how the country's economic output has shifted within its borders. The data, recently released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, reflect both population growth and income increases — in short, the economic weight of each state.

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Gov. Perry Visits the Republican Leadership Conference

Governor Perry spoke to the Republican Leadership Conference (RLC) in New Orleans this past Saturday, touting the Texas model of balancing budgets, cutting spending, and keeping taxes low.

Video footage from

Have you joined the conversation on facebook? "Like" Gov. Perry's page and stay updated on more videos and news.

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Once Again, Texas Shows the Way

Once again, those observing Texas' strong economy are crediting Governor Perry's fiscal conservative leadership. This time the kudos come The Wall Street Journal's Political Diary. In "Texas Shows the Way," published on May 19th, the article points out that in these tough economic times, our state continues to only spend what it can afford. What's more, Texas gets credit for getting more bang for its buck when it comes to education. Now that's the definition of fiscal conservative!

Please read the WSJ's Political Dairy entry below...

Texas Shows the Way
Texas lawmakers often take pride in providing a strong contrast to California's tax-and-spend politicians. So it's not surprising that Texas Republicans are seeking to close their two-year $23 billion budget gap by cutting education and not raising taxes.

The Texas House budget lops off $8 billion from education, and the Senate plan cuts $4 billion. Last year, school budgets totaled $51 billion, $23 billion of which came from the state. The state's cuts might not be as tough for districts to swallow if student enrollment weren't skyrocketing. But over the past decade, Texas's school aged population has grown by roughly 30%. According to one survey, the state enrolls 500 new students every school day.

Last week Jim Pitts, the GOP chairman of Texas's House Appropriations Committee, warned the legislature that many schools could be forced to shut down eventually if lawmakers don't appropriate more money for education. Teachers unions have also warned that the budget could result in between 80,000 and 100,000 layoffs.

Since state law caps local property tax rates, districts can't raise them when state funding decreases. In 2001 a number of school districts sued the state arguing that it violated a constitutional mandate to adequately fund education. The districts won that case, which could serve as a precedent for future lawsuits.

Yet it's important to maintain perspective. The National Education Association reports that Texas spends $9,227 per pupil, or roughly $1,300 less than the national average, but still more than what either California or Florida spends. Texas also seems to get more bang for its buck. According to a federal National Assessment of Education Progress report, Texas has higher math and writing test scores and a lower pupil-teacher ratio than the national average.

Lone Star Republicans say that education cuts will only be temporary and that the state's economic resurgence will restore funding in the next couple of years. They have good reason to hope so. Texas accounted for 17% of the nation's job growth in March. While other states are raising taxes to spare education, Texas's low tax base will spur economic growth, which over time will provide more revenue for schools.

-- Allysia Finley

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Statement by Gov. Rick Perry on the Comptroller’s Revised Revenue Estimate

Governor Rick Perry today issued the following statement on Comptroller Susan Combs' Revised Biennial Revenue Estimate:

"The revised revenue estimate shows the strength of Texas job creation and economic growth, but it does not mean lawmakers can abandon necessary budget reductions. Just as Texas families and employers have had to tighten their belts during the national recession, so must state government.

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California Dreamin'—of Jobs in Texas

APRIL 22, 2011
Wall Street Journal
John Fund
<img src="" /> <i>Austin, Texas</i> It wasn't your usual legislative hearing. A group of largely Republican California lawmakers and Democratic Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom traveled here last week to hear from businesses that have left their state to set up shop in Texas. "We came to learn why they would pick up their roots and move in order to grow their businesses," says GOP Assemblyman Dan Logue, who organized the trip. "Why does Chief Executive magazine rate California the worst state for job and business growth and Texas the best state?" The contrast is undeniable. Texas has added 165,000 jobs during the last three years while California has lost 1.2 million. California's jobless rate is 12% compared to 8% in Texas.

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Perry: Let's cut spending before we try to raise revenue

Thursday, April 14th, 2011
Houston Chronicle
By; Associated Press
AUSTIN — Gov. Rick Perry is taking a dim view of efforts to raise more money for the strapped Texas budget. Perry said Thursday that lawmakers should focus on cutting programs, not hunting for additional money.

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Perry warns Legislature: Don't tap Rainy Day Fund

March 8, 2011
Houston Chronicle
DALLAS — Texas Gov. Rick Perry said Tuesday the Legislature should keep its hands off the state's Rainy Day Fund, but he declined to say whether he'd veto any move to use the money. "The truth of the matter is, there's no guarantee we won't be in the same situation in two years," Perry told reporters at a Dallas machine shop, where he touted the virtues of small business. "If we tap the fund now, all we've done is kick the can down the road."

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State of the State

Governor Perry delivered his State of the State address this week, proposing to consolidate or suspend non-critical state agencies in order to make state government more streamlined and efficient. The governor also outlined his priorities for the 82nd Legislative Session, including balancing the budget without raising taxes, preserving essential services, and strengthening Texas' position as a national economic leader through sound policies. Check out the Governor's entire State of the State address below.

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