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

Hutchison Named “Porker of the Year” Runner-Up For 2009 By Citizens Against Government Waste

February 2, 2010

Senator says “I don’t do pork” but has been called “Queen of Earmarks” for requesting $10 billion worth

Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison was today unveiled as the “Porker of the Year” runner-up for 2009 by Citizens Against Government Waste (GAGW). Appearing on CNBC’s Squawk Box this morning, GAGW president Tom Schatz said that Sen. Hutchison finished second to Massachusetts Congressman Barney Frank in the 2009 “Porker of the Year” balloting.

In announcing her runner-up finish, Schatz described Sen. Hutchison as “one of those individual members of Congress who unfortunately says that they are a fiscal conservative and yet she asked for about one-and-a-half billion dollars in pork-barrel projects for the current fiscal year. So you have telling the folks back home that I’m doing well, and then you have the actual record, so there is the hypocritical part of that.”


“With a 17-year career in Washington of voting for bailouts, record deficits, and billions in earmarks, Senator Hutchison is once again being recognized for her bad spending habits,” said Texans for Rick Perry spokesman Mark Miner. “We hope the senator and her campaign enjoy the delivery of pork today on behalf of Texans for Rick Perry.”

This afternoon, the Hutchison campaign is being delivered 10 pulled pork sandwiches, one for every billion dollars in earmarks she has requested in her career.

During a 2006 Senate debate, Sen. Hutchison infamously said, “I don’t do pork,” but in 2009 she was called the “Queen of Earmarks” by the San Antonio Express-News for her more than $10 billion in earmarks, “a staggering sum that has never been tallied before. It ranks her among the most successful earmarkers in congressional history.”

(SOURCES: “Candidates clash over Iraq,” Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 10/26/06; “Texas senator is queen of earmarks,” San Antonio Express-News, 10/9/09)

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Gov. Perry Discusses Fiscal Responsibility and Education in Visits to Small Businesses in Wichita Falls, Texarkana and Tyler

February 1, 2010

Stresses education and job creation as keys to continued success in Texas

Gov. Rick Perry shared his message of fiscal responsibility today during visits to small businesses in Wichita Falls, Texarkana and Tyler. He stressed the importance of strengthening Texas’ education while maintaining a focus on job creation efforts as the keys to preparing an equipped workforce and overcoming the challenges of the struggling national economy.

Gov. Perry visited the Feed and Garden Store in Wichita Falls, North Forty in Texarkana, and Cavender’s Boot City in Tyler, all businesses that represent the foundation of what keeps our state’s economy moving forward.

In his remarks, Gov. Perry credited the comparative strength of Texas’ economy to four principles that Texas leaders have upheld including fiscal restraint, a predictable regulatory climate, a reasonable and fair legal system, and an accountable public school system that is better preparing our children to compete in the workforce.

“Because we have kept it simple and stuck to our guns, entrepreneurs know that they can succeed on their own merits without being taxed, regulated and frivolously sued out of existence,” said Gov. Perry. “They also know that our workforce is getting stronger by the day because we have improved the quality of public education by emphasizing accountability, teacher incentive pay and mastery of the basic subjects.”

The governor reiterated his recent proposal calling on the Texas Education Agency and the Department of Public Safety to work with local school districts to further leverage the privilege of a driver’s license as an incentive to keep students engaged in the education process.

“I believe that in order for high school-aged individuals to get and keep a driver's license they should be enrolled in school, be it bricks and mortar or our virtual high school, and, most importantly, working toward their diploma or GED,” said Gov. Perry. “This approach will not only give local school districts another tool in their efforts to reduce dropouts, it will also give students an incentive to do the work that will prepare them to compete in the workforce.”

Acknowledging the challenging economic climate posed by the national recession, the governor pledged to keep working until every Texan who wants a job has a job and noted that Texas’ commitment to upholding a business-friendly climate will lead the state to continued economic success. Texas economist Ray Perryman recently noted that Texas is the “last in and first out” when it comes to the current economic downturn, pointing to the job growth that Texas has experienced in three of the past six months. The Texas Workforce Commission has also reported that Texas created more private sector jobs than any other state in the nation over the last 10 years and has the lowest unemployment rate among the 10 largest states in the nation.

“The story of hardworking innovators coming together to attract the best and brightest is played out again and again all across Texas as people take advantage of the job-friendly climate we’ve created and risk their capital in pursuit of a vision,” said Gov. Perry. “The fact is, even though no one is immune to the effects of the economic downturn, Texas is better off than just about every other state, thanks to years of disciplined conservative leadership at every level.”

Additionally, Gov. Perry focused on fiscal responsibility by reiterating the need for Texas to amend its constitution with two key provisions: requiring a two-thirds vote of the Legislature to approve tax increases and limiting spending growth to the combined growth rates of Texas’ population and inflation. Both amendments will ensure the continued fiscal discipline that allowed Texas to balance its budget in 2009 while setting aside billions for its Rainy Day fund and cutting taxes for more than 40,000 small businesses.

To ensure Texas continues providing a strong education to meet the challenges of an increasingly competitive workplace, Gov. Perry has announced a proposed expansion of the state’s Virtual School Network to improve access to high quality, online courses for high school students and help recapture students who have dropped out of school. Gov. Perry has also called on doubling the number of Texas Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (T-STEM) academies in an effort to educate more Texas students in the subjects required of an increasingly high tech economy and workplace, and expanding the UTeach Program in an effort to recruit university students earning math and science degrees into teaching.

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Perry Touts Tax Cuts, Balanced State Budget

Friday, January 29, 2010

Christina Lane

On the eve of the second Texas Republican gubernatorial debate, Gov. Rick Perry told East Texans that under his administration, Texas has set a blueprint to recover from the economic crisis that he believes Washington should follow.

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Texas Association of Business Endorses Gov. Perry for Re-election

January 28, 2010

Gov. Perry Speaks at TAB Annual Conference Luncheon

AUSTIN – Gov. Rick Perry today spoke at the Texas Association of Business (TAB) Annual Conference Luncheon to honor the 2010 Best Companies to Work For in Texas and accept TAB’s endorsement for his re-election.

“I am honored to receive the Texas Association of Business’ vote of confidence in my candidacy and humbled by the endorsement of organizations from across the state, which represent hundreds of thousands of Texans from every walk of life,” said Gov. Perry. “I take it as affirmation from those who know what it takes to succeed, who have boldly tackled life’s challenges and embraced our state’s deep-seated embrace of liberty.”

Gov. Perry discussed the importance of upholding Texas’ business-friendly climate by keeping taxes low and regulations predictable, and maintaining a fair legal system and accountable public schools. He also noted Texas’ strong economic position compared to other states, while recognizing the importance to continue working to create the jobs Texas needs, until every Texan who wants a job has a job.

“Hardworking people all over our state know that governments never really create jobs, businesses do, when they’re free of excessive government influence,” said Gov. Perry. “Government is at its best when it’s cultivating an environment that makes it easier for employers to thrive and then gets out of the way. The business-friendly climate we have created, combined with the efforts of hardworking Texans, have moved Texas to the forefront of the nation’s economy and have us poised to remain there well into the future.”

This week, the U.S. Department of Labor released numbers confirming that Texas has outdone all other large states in job growth in the last decade, adding almost 750,000 private-sector jobs from 1999 to 2009, while the other ten largest states lost jobs, part of a net national loss of more than 1.5 million private sector jobs. Texas economist Ray Perryman also recently noted that Texas is the “last in and first out” when it comes to the current economic downturn, pointing to the job growth that Texas has experienced in three of the past six months and the fact that the unemployment rate has remained two points below the national average.

“The business community has a true champion in Gov. Rick Perry,” said TAB President and BACPAC spokesman Bill Hammond. “Texas is fortunate to have the most pro-business governor in the nation. Gov. Perry has helped lead our state to being home to the most robust business climate in America. Gov. Perry's unparalleled record of accomplishment on business issues made the decision an easy one.”

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Abilene's Receptor Logic is an Example of Texas' Success

Yesterday, Governor Perry highlighted the importance of strengthening our state’s education, maintaining a focus on job creation efforts, and upholding principles of fiscal responsibility as the keys to continuing Texas’ success. He spoke at Receptor Logic, a company working to develop therapies for cancer and infectious disease.

Abliene, TX "Success in Texas" Press Conference

Abliene, TX "Success in Texas" Press Conference

Abliene, TX "Success in Texas" Press Conference

View all the pictures from the press conference by visiting Rick Perry's Flickr page.

Another great way to see updates from the trail is by joining the nearly 3,000 people who follow @GovPerry2010 on Twitter.

Find the full Press Release here.

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Education, Job Creation and Fiscal Responsibility Key to Continued Success in Texas

January 26, 2010

Gov. Perry Visits Receptor Logic in Abilene to Share His Vision for Texas Future

ABILENE – Gov. Rick Perry today highlighted the importance of strengthening our state’s education, maintaining a focus on job creation efforts, and upholding principles of fiscal responsibility as the keys to continuing Texas’ success. He spoke at Receptor Logic, a company working to develop therapies for cancer and infectious disease.

“Entrepreneurs know they can succeed in Texas on their own merits, without being taxed, regulated and frivolously sued out of existence,” said Gov. Perry. “They also know that our workforce is getting stronger by the day because we have improved the quality of public education by emphasizing accountability, teacher incentive pay and mastery of the basic subjects.”

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Statement from Gov. Rick Perry on KERA Debate

January 14, 2010

"Tonight’s debate gave Texans the chance to hear competing visions for our state’s future while reflecting on the remarkable success story our state has written over the last several years.

"As our nation’s economy continues to struggle, our best prospects lie with maintaining our job-friendly climate, continuing to strengthen our education system, keeping our border secure and pushing back against the flood of misguided policies pouring out of Washington.

"I hope that our success has earned the confidence of Texas voters and that they will continue supporting me in leading our state with hard work, innovation and careful fiscal stewardship."

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Study: Texas at top of small business rankings

January 11, 2010

Fort Worth Business Press

Leslie Wimmer

Out of the 50 states and the District of Columbia, Texas ranks No. 3 as one of the top friendliest states for small businesses and entrepreneurship in the country.

The Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council cited the state’s low business tax rates, workers compensation benefits, and state and local government spending issues as positive factors key to Texas’ third place ranking in the council’s 2009 Small Business Survival Index study.

Factors keeping the state from one of the top two spots, however, were gas and diesel taxes, Texas’ crime rate, utility costs, property taxes, and state and local sales, gross receipts and excise taxes, the council said in the study, released in late 2009.

“The Small Business Survival Index gets at the public policy costs and trends that affect – directly or indirectly – entrepreneurship and small businesses,” study author and Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council Chief Economist Raymond J. Keating said in a statement. “These measures should matter to everyone because small businesses, of course, drive innovation, economic growth and job creation. If we want to get our economy back on a solid, robust growth track, then we need pro-entrepreneur policies at the federal, state and local levels.”

David Berzina, executive vice president of economic development for the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce, said Texas’ high ranking isn’t surprising considering the opportunities available to entrepreneurs across the state and in North Texas.

“Employees from some of these larger firms, Texas Instruments, Bell Helicopter, Lockheed Martin, they get the spirit and start a business of their own after they get their training from some of these bigger companies. They come up with an idea, and pursue the American dream,” he said.

Berzina added that Texas’ universities and community colleges work together to provide opportunities for business education and development.

Brad Hancock, director of Texas Christian University’s Neeley School of Business Entrepreneurship Center, said the center has seen an increasing number of students joining the center and showing interest in opening their own small businesses.

The growing interest could be a rebound effect from the troubles corporate America has experienced over the last several years, Hancock said, adding that while students show interest in a number of different industries, technology is becoming one of the more popular choices.

“We are seeing more students, I think because they’re more technology proficient, looking at technology-based business,” he said. “I think more students are asking ‘How can we use the iPhone? How can we use the Internet and this technology that’s emerging?’”

Alvaro Guillem, president and CEO of ZS Pharma Inc. in Fort Worth, said he could have picked any state in the U.S. to open his pharmaceutical development company, but chose Texas because of the state’s tax rates and business infrastructure.

“Over the last few years what I’ve been doing is developing pharmaceuticals and bringing products to the market,” he said. “We could have headquartered anywhere, but over the last several years, Texas as a state has developed quite an infrastructure when it comes to supporting product development, and supporting everything being contained in Texas. That makes it much more easily managed when you deal with a project where you don’t have to go all over the place to look for resources to support what you’re doing.”

Guillem added that Texas also has been a business-friendly state because of its tax rates.

“Nobody likes to get taxed, but if you have to get taxed at least be reasonable, and Texas seems to do that,” he said. “The business climate has been very conducive for settling in and doing business.”

In ranking the 50 states and District of Columbia, the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council considered some of the major government-imposed or government-related costs – 36 total – affecting investment, entrepreneurship and business, according to the study.

One of Texas’ highest rankings is a result of the state’s lack of a state personal income tax, which can affect individual economic decision making in important ways, the study said. And while Texas also benefited from not having a corporate income tax, it did receive a low ranking – coming in at 39 out of 51 – for higher state and local sales, gross receipts and excise taxes, in the study. Texas also ranked at 39 for property tax rates, at 45 for the number of health insurance mandates, and at 42 for the state’s crime rate.

“When companies look at Texas, they’re discovering that we’ve fostered an environment that encourages people to pursue their dreams, build businesses and create jobs,” Gov. Rick Perry said in a statement. “This index is further proof that our conservative fiscal principles, low taxes, predictable regulatory environment and educated workforce have made Texas the best state in the nation to build a business and create jobs.”

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Reagan Endorses Gov. Perry for Re-Election

January 5, 2010

AUSTIN – Gov. Rick Perry today received the endorsement of Michael Reagan for re-election in 2010.

"Gov. Perry's proven commitment to conservative values and fiscal responsibility has made him a national leader in the effort to limit government intrusion and keep our nation on the path of prosperity,” said Reagan. “His work has made Texas a model for good governance that the rest of our country would do well to emulate. I am proud to endorse him in his re-election and look forward to working alongside him to continue promoting the conservative values that create opportunity and maintain our nation's strength."

Michael Reagan hosts a conservative talk radio program, the "Michael Reagan Show," which has more than 5 million listeners and is syndicated to more than 200 radio stations in the U.S. through Radio America. He is the son of former president Ronald Reagan and founder of the Reagan Legacy Foundation, a non-profit, charitable organization that seeks to advance the causes championed by President Reagan and to memorialize the accomplishments of his presidency.

“I’m pleased to have the support of such a respected and effective conservative leader as Michael Reagan,” said Gov. Perry. “He is a powerful voice in the effort to espouse the fiscal and conservative values that have made our nation strong and prosperous, and I am eager to continue working alongside him to uphold these values in Texas and beyond.”

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America’s Future: California vs. Texas

October 29, 2009

Trends Magazine

What's the worst state to do business in? According to readers of Chief Executive magazine, it's California. In the same poll, Texas won first place as the best state in which to put your headquarters.

As reported in The Economist, the two largest states in the nation have very different philosophies and very different success rates.

In the 1950s and '60s, California was the embodiment of the American Dream, offering great schools, roads, jobs, and communities with all the latest amenities, not to mention good weather, beaches, and quick access to the mountains and wilderness for recreation. As home to Disneyland and the movie industry, the state represented all that was glamorous and new.

Cut to the present day. California is $26 billion in the hole and has recently been paying its bills with IOUs. Its once-proud schools are suffering and the prison system is releasing criminals early because the state can't afford to keep them. Social services are being cut right and left. Infrastructure is aging and falling apart. Unemployment is nearing 12 percent. State employees are forced to take unpaid furlough days and many California cities are worse off than Detroit. Its state income tax is the second highest in the U.S., and government regulations seem perversely aligned to discourage people from doing business there.

In fact, people are fleeing the so-called Golden State at a rate of more than 100,000 a year. From the Great Depression on, California was a dream destination for Americans. Now it looks more like a nightmare, taking on new debt at a rate of $25 million a day.

Texas, on the other hand, was considered something of a backwater in the 1950s and '60s, and certainly not a glamorous destination for the upwardly mobile masses. How things change. Unemployment in that state is two percentage points below the national average. It has one of the lowest rates of repossession for housing. There is no state income tax, nor is there a tax on capital gains in Texas.

Also, the Lone Star State has more Fortune 500 headquarters than any other place in the union: California has 51, New York has 56, and Texas has 64. AT&T, Dell, Texas Instruments, ExxonMobil, ConocoPhillips, American Airlines, Continental Airlines, Southwest Airlines, J.C. Penny, and Halliburton are all located in Texas.

Texas also has a geographic advantage over California. California has mountains that limit growth. Texas is largely flat. California is big. Texas is bigger. If you drive from Houston to El Paso, you're halfway to Los Angeles – without leaving Texas.

Texas created 70 percent of all the new jobs in the United States in 2008, and it has a budget surplus. No wonder it's the fastest-growing state in America, with 150,000 new residents arriving each year. Houston promises to become the nation's third-largest city in the near future, edging out Chicago for that spot. And 3 of the 10 largest cities in the United States are already in Texas – Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio.

Both the Brookings Institution and Forbes Magazine studied America’s cities and rated them for how well they create new jobs. All of America’s top five job-creating cities were in Texas. It's more than purely economics and regulation can explain, though. Texas – and Houston in particular – has a broad mix of Hispanics, whites, Asians, and blacks with virtually no racial problems. Texas welcomes new people and exemplifies genuine tolerance. When Hurricane Katrina hit, Houston took in 100,000 people. Not surprisingly, Houston has more foreign consulates than any American city other than New York and Los Angeles.

And while Texas is creating jobs and new business, the Financial Times recently observed that the failure of a state as large and important as California is serving as a drag on the entire U.S. economy. Much of what we perceive as a national housing crisis, for example, is really concentrated in a few of the hardest-hit regions – California and Florida chief among them. Meanwhile, areas such as Texas have experienced a much milder downturn. In short, the catastrophes in Florida, Nevada, and especially California make the national market look really bad.

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