Volume XXXI, Number 7
July 2016

State Leaders Tell Agencies to Cut Their Budgets by Four Percent

Concerned over a possible revenue shortfall for the next legislative session, Texas’ highest elected officials recently instructed state agencies to slash four percent from their departments’ budgets.

The cuts were included in a letter signed by Governor Greg Abbott, Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, and House Speaker Joe Straus went to agency heads and boards on June 30.

“It is imperative that every state agency engage in a thorough review of each program,” the three leaders wrote. “As the starting point for budget deliberations, we are requiring each agency to trim four percent from their base appropriation levels.”

The letter went on to carve out exceptions to the cuts. Included on that list was Medicaid benefits and eligibility.

You can read the letter at: Leadership Budget Letter.

The directive is an early step in the process that will produce the 2018-19 state budget. Within the next few weeks, agencies will send their budget requests to the Legislative Budget Board (LBB) for review. The LBB will then make recommendations to the budget writing committees in each chamber.

The reductions are an effort to contain the growth of state spending in the light of falling oil and gas prices.

“Due to the slowdown in parts of our economy, some difficult decision will be required to balance the next state budget and the process of making those decisions begins now,” Speaker Straus said in a news release following the announcement.

President’s Report

 Legislative Update

  • State Leaders Tell Agencies to Cut Their Budgets by Four Percent

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