Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick: Statement on the Unanimous Passage of House Bill 1 – State Budget


AUSTIN – Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick issued this statement today following the unanimous passage of HB 1, the State Budget. Every session, the Texas House and the Texas Senate alternate sponsorship of the budget. By that tradition, the Texas House will sponsor the 88th Legislative Session’s budget. The Senate passed HB 1 with the language of Senate Bill 1, the Senate Budget, by Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston:

“The true strength of our state lies within every single Texan and our booming economy is the result of their hard work. Texans must be the ultimate beneficiaries of our conservative budgeting process and I believe the Texas Senate’s budget, which passed unanimously today, reflects our state’s values. Even before the Comptroller’s Biennial Revenue Estimate, I have been clear that we must return a significant portion of our unprecedented budget surplus to those who created it: the taxpayers.

“Some highlights of the Senate’s budget include:

  • $16.5 billion for the Senate’s property tax relief package, including raising the Homestead Exemption to $70,000 for all Texans and $100,000 for seniors 65 and older (40% of all homesteads in Texas are seniors)
  • $4.6 billion to continue current support for Operation Lone Star and to build the wall
  • $10 billion to create a low-interest loan program to fund the construction of desperately-needed new natural gas plants
  • $350 million to increase pay and training for rural law enforcement
  • $3.1 billion in mental health care funding, split between HB 1 and SB 30, the Supplemental Budget

“The Senate’s budget funds the largest increase in public education spending in state history, including:

  • $5 billion to address special education services, increased teacher compensation, curriculum, school safety, and school choice
  • $3.7 billion, in addition to $1 billion in the Senate’s Supplemental Budget, for cost-of-living adjustments for retired educators and a $7,500 supplemental payment to retired educators aged 75 and older
  • $589 million to limit health care premium increases for teachers

“Texas is the 9th largest economy in the world. Writing the budget is a massive undertaking. Senate Finance Committee Chair Joan Huffman has done a fantastic job working with my budget team and I thank her for her enthusiastic work and leadership. The Senate Finance Committee put in long hours of work to craft this budget. Like every budget passed by the Senate since I became Lt. Governor, this budget sits within all constitutional spending limits and does not exceed population times inflation. The Senate’s budget secures our conservative future and will help keep our state prosperous for all Texans for decades to come.”