AUSTIN – The Senate Finance Committee today unanimously approved the Committee Substitute to House Bill 1, the appropriations bill, sponsored by Texas State Senator Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound.
"After many months of hearings and testimony, I am proud of the budget the Senate Finance Committee has crafted," said Senator Nelson. "This is a robust, fiscally responsible budget that meets the needs of our growing state. It prioritizes the two key issues of session -- property tax relief and public education. It makes smart investments in our future and stays within our constitutional spending limits."
CSHB 1 appropriates $116.8B in General Revenue and $247.7B in All Funds. These totals are within constitutional spending limits and population times inflation with 7.6 percent growth over FY 18-19 in General Revenue and 5.1 percent growth in All Funds. CSHB 1 provides:
- $4B to give every teacher and librarian a $5,000 across-the-board pay raise;
- $2.7B for property tax relief and reducing the reliance on recapture;
- $2.3B in additional state aid to school districts;
- $2.4B to fund enrollment growth for public education, based on an estimated 65,000 additional students per year;
- $230M to maintain current health insurance premiums and benefits for our retired teachers;
- $157M to maintain the state's ratio of 1.1 graduate medical education slots for every medical school graduate in the state;
- an increase of $529.9M for higher education, including:
- $189.9M for enrollment growth;
- a 4-percent increase to our general academic institutions; and
- a 19-percent increase to our community college success points.
- an additional $55M to increase outpatient community mental health treatment and avoid waitlists;
- funding for 20 additional community inpatient psychiatric beds;
- a $30M increase for women's health - bringing funding for women's health to a new all-time high;
- an additional $5M to provide enhanced services to victims of family violence;
- an increase of $19.3M to reduce caseloads at Child Protective Services;
- $7.5M in new funding for rape crisis centers;
- $49.8M in additional funding for state crime labs with a prioritization of sexual assault kits;
- approval of all agency requests related to combatting human trafficking totaling $90.6M;
- $1.2M to leverage a $23.3M federal grant to improve election security;
- $193M to address wait times at our driver license offices;
- $3.7M to establish nine new child protection courts;
- an additional $4.3M for judicial training, and a directive to ensure that judges are educated about mental health resources their communities;
- more than $1B across state agencies to address cybersecurity, replace legacy systems and upgrade information technology;
- $31B address the state's transportation needs, including the full transfer to the State Highway Fund under Proposition 7;
- 100-percent appropriation of the sporting goods sales tax to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the Historical Commission; and
- $28.1M to improve technology at the Railroad Commission and hire 22 additional oil and gas and pipeline safety inspectors.
CSHB 1 now goes to the full Senate for consideration.
SENATOR JANE NELSON represents District 12, including portions of Tarrant and Denton Counties. She is Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee and the highest-ranking Republican in the Texas Senate.