Brite Divinity School Predicted Challenges in Texas Name Questions

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1. What do you foresee as the major Challenge for the state of Texas in 2021 (500 words)
2. what sectors should be prioritised in the next budget and why (500 words)

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Final exam Fall 2020
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From property taxes to teacher pay, here’s how the Texas Legislature handled spending
priorities
BY EDGAR WALTERS AND DARLA CAMERON UPDATED: MAY 31, 2019
Behind closed doors at the Texas Capitol, Texas lawmakers spent weeks negotiating which
public programs should receive funding – and how much — in 2020 and 2021.
Here’s how budget writers worked out key differences over how to spend the state’s anticipated
surplus. Including public schools, teacher salaries, women’s health, prison guard pay and more,
we’ve laid out some of the biggest spending priorities to see how lawmakers compromised
before sending a final version to Gov. Greg Abbott, who over the next few weeks may veto
individual line-items he objects to. These figures come from the Legislative Budget Board.
While Hurricane Harvey recovery funds for school districts and future disaster preparedness are
big-ticket spending items this session, they are not included in this analysis because they are
mostly included in a “supplemental” budget that pays for leftover expenses from the 2017
legislative session.
Total 2020-21 budget
FINAL BUDGET
HOUSE
SENATE
$251 billion
S251 billion
$248 billion
Doesn’t include any money from Includes a $2.3 billion withdrawal Doesn’t include any money from
the state savings account
from the state savings account the state savings account
After lawmakers agreed to further increase state spending on public education and property tax
cuts, the budget ended up nearer to the House’s larger price tag. But lawmakers opted not to
touch the Economic Stabilization Fund, the state’s savings account fed by oil and gas tax
collections, in the 2020-21 budget. Instead, they authorized a record $6.1 billion withdrawal
from the state savings account in a “supplemental” budget that pays for Hurricane Harvey
recovery and infrastructure projects.
School funds and teacher pay
FINAL BUDGET
HOUSE
SENATE
$6.5 billion
$6.3 billion
$6.3 billion
To increase base funding for each To increase base funding for each To increase base funding for each
student by $1,020 and let school student by $890 and pay for a student by S740 and pay for a
districts determine staff pay raises roughly $1,300 minimum raise for $5,000 raise for teachers and
all school employees
librarians
In the end, lawmakers agreed to increase the price tag of the investment they were willing to
make in the section of the budget governing public education and school property taxes.
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The House and Senate had originally agreed to spend $9 billion in new state funds on schools
and tax relief, but their final compromise came to around $11.6 billion. An earlier sticking point
between the chambers was how much money to set aside for across-the-board teacher pay raises,
but the final compromise aligned more with the House’s original proposal to give school districts
flexibility to determine pay raises.
Lawmakers mandated, however, that 30% of a school district’s additional funding go toward pay
raises for school employees, with priority given to teachers with more than five years of
experience.
Cont
20
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at
Property tax cuts
FINAL BUDGET
S5 billion
An average 8-cent property tax
rate cut in 2020 and 13-cent cut in
2021, without a sales tax increase
HOUSE
$2.7 billion
4 cent property tax rate cut
SENATE
$2.7 billion
Up to a 15-cent property tax rate
cut, but only if lawmakers and
voters agree to raise sales taxes
“S
After a proposal to raise the sales tax to pay for more sweeping property tax cuts failed at the
Legislature, lawmakers opted to spend $5 billion in state funds on property tax cuts well
above the $2.7 billion they originally proposed.
Legislators say the $5 billion would lower tax rates by an average of 8 cents per $100 property
valuation in 2020 and 13 cents in 2021. That would mean a tax cut of $200 for the owner of a
$250,000 home in 2020 and $325 in 2021.
Medicaid
FINAL BUDGET
S66.5 billion
Pays for new projected patients,
requires cost cuts
HOUSE
S68.6 billion
Pays for new projected patients
SENATE
S67 billion
Pays for new projected patients,
requires cost cuts
I
Lawmakers included in their final budget a proposal from the Senate to essentially cut $900
million from the federal-state health insurance program for the poor and disabled by ordering the
state’s health commission to implement “cost containment.” The budget does not cover expected
growth in Medicaid costs, meaning lawmakers will almost certainly have to pay for leftover bills
in a supplemental budget when they reconvene in 2021.
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3) State support for health and human services has dropped and could end up being a real
decrease, even after the 2021 session’s “IOU” for Medicaid and CHIP.
In Article II of the budget, where lawmakers authorize most health and human services funding,
the official All Funds amount translates to an increase of $488 million, or 0.6 percent, compared
to 2018-2019. But focusing on state (non-federal) support for HHS, that turns into an
almost $1.9 billion (5 percent) two-year decrease. This is due mainly to a better match
rate for Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), foster care, and other
federally supported services, plus the exclusion of most medical cost-per-client growth in
Medicaid and CHIP. This latter amount, estimated at $1.9 billion in General Revenue midway
through the 2019 session, could drop to $1.5 billion if state budget-writers’ S350 million “cost
containment” goal is achieved before 2021 ends. Otherwise, the 2021 Legislature will have to
deal with this in a supplemental spending package. Dividing Article II into Medicaid and non-
Medicaid services like child protection or public health makes it easier to see how the so-called
“Medicaid IOU” gives budget writers some breathing room that, while not realistic, is better than
actual cuts to health care for low-income Texans.
4) Higher education funding is not what it seems and underinvests in financial aid.
Higher education advocates may be puzzled about a $4.6 billion, or 22 percent, All Funds boost
in state-budget support for colleges and universities, which turns out to be only a 5 percent
increase if we make an “apples to apples” comparison. “Apples to apples” would be financial aid
and support for higher education institutions that were already in the budget. But “apples to
oranges” is the new $3.5 billion in the higher education budget for disaster management.”
In other words: Much of the All Funds increase of $4.6 billion is not due to a real or significant
boost in support for need-based financial aid, public community colleges or universities. H.B.
2704 crantadithe eyes Division of Emerson Management act of the Texas A&Micantem
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Later Sunday, the comptroller’s office said that unless the Legislature spent money out of the
savings account before July, the balance for the fund would be revised down, but not by more than
$1 billion
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520
Sta
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In October, Hegar estimated that the state budget would have a nearly $3 billion balance for the
fiscal 2020-21 biennium. The balance of the Economic Stabilization Fund, Hegar announced at the
time, would be around $9.3 billion by the end of the 2021 fiscal year, in August of that year.
her
The virus has already shocked economics around the country, though it’s unclear how extensive the
economic downturn will be. As the new coronavirus grew into a pandemic carlier this month and
Saudi Arabia declared a price war on Russia, oil prices plummeted to their lowest points in
decades. Since Texas is the nation’s top oil-producing state, its economy and budget are particularly
sensitive to oil prices.
Sse
SO!
Then, as the virus started spreading within the state’s borders, officials shuttered or restricted
several industries operations to limit public interactions and stem the growth of new infections.
Those two situations created a double whamury by slowing two key revenues that fuel the state’s
budget and economy: sales taxes and oil and gas production. Experts have said the economic
damage will largely depend on how long the public health crisis lasts.
Last week, Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order directing bars, dine-in restaurants and
schools to close as he estimated that tens of thousands of Texans could test positive for the virus in
coming weeks.
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On Sunday, Hegar told lawmakers he plans to keep all parties updated as the picture for the next
several months continues to crystallize. He also pointed to the post-9/11 economy as good
perspective for what the near future could look like and mentioned multiple times that the amount of
federal funding that Texas receives could also have a major impact.
ent
According to members on the call, Hegar fielded a number of questions, ranging from whether the
governor has the jurisdiction to push back sales tax collections for specific industries – no, the
comptroller said to whether state dollars can be shifted around within the state budget during
such a crisis.
Abbott, for his part, noted last week that he and the Legislature can tap into the state’s disaster
relief fund immediately to help respond to the virus. He also said that the Economic Stabilization
Fund could be used “at the appropriate time,” which he said would happen when state leaders “know
the full extent of the challenge we’re dealing with.”
Before the stabilization fund could be used, Abbott would need to summon state lawmakers back to
Austin for a special session before the Legislature reconvenes in January 2021. When asked at a
town hall about the possibility for calling such a session, Abbott said that “every option remains on
the table” while noting that there would not be any need for such an action if every Texan followed
guidance to help curb the virus.
On Sunday night’s call, after a member mentioned a special session, Bonnen said Abbott had not yet
said there was a need for one – though, the speaker added, that could of course change in the
future.
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Respond to the following questions on the basis on your text and the following articles.
1. What do you foresee as the major challenges for the state of Texas in 2021? (500 words)
2. What sectors should be prioritized in the next budget and why? (500 words)
3. Are there any underlying conditions in Texas budgetary process that makes the state less
efficient during a crisis time? (500 words)
Extra question (worth 5 points)
Compare and contrast the corona virus responses of Califomia and Texas and analyze the
disparities of two state government (500 words)
Unpacking the State Budget
The state budget tells us what our leaders have decided are the priorities for Texas. Following
changes in the budget closely can reveal shifting focus points, though much remains the same
from one budget cycle to another because of the laws, constitutional provisions, and federal
requirements that shape the budget process.
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2.614 words, 16,341 characters
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Unpacking the State Budget
nt
The state budget tells us what our leaders have decided are the priorities for Texas. Following
changes in the budget closely can reveal shifting focus points, though much remains the same
from one budget cycle to another because of the laws, constitutional provisions, and federal
requirements that shape the budget process,
Want to know what’s really changing for better or worse in the 2020 2021 Texas state budget? I
took a closer look, and here’s what I found:
1) The approved budget is not as big as originally reported.
When the 86th Legislature wrapped up this past May, legislative reports said that the final
2020-2021 budget authorized almost $251 billion in support for state services. This broke down
into $164.2 billion in state funds and $86,4 billion in federal grants. Those preliminary figures
came solely from House Bill 1, the General Appropriations Act, Recent information from the
Legislative Budget Board takes into account other significant legislation, such as House Bill 3
(the new school finance law) and its $3.5 billion buy-down of recaptured local property taxes,
plus the changes made by Senate Bill 500 (supplemental spending) to 2019 and to 2020-2021.
With all spending legislation tallied, the 2020-2021 total drops to $248 billion, of which $1619
billion is state revenue, with federal grants mostly unchanged. State aid to prek 12 education
(17.5 percent increase) and the judiciary/courts (up 8.9 percent) are the only areas of the budget
that got an increase beyond two-year population and inflation growth costs (1.9 percent),
Texas State Budget “Own-Source Support for Major Services
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< ? Final exam Fall 2020 125% TV View Zoom Add Page T Text Insert Table Chart Shape Media Comment Colla & Texas State Budget "Own-Source" Support for Major Services Biennial Billions 5 10 520 $50 so Publicaduction ont Medicaid-funded health care Other "Article health and human services 2018-2019 Higher education 2020-2021 Dept. of Transportation Dept. of Criminal Justice 20 Sta nt General govt. species Other public safety criminal Justice agencies "Own-source" means, General Revenue, GR- Dedicated, and Other Funds (such as State Highway Fund, Economic Stabilization Fund, Property Tax Relief Fund, and other non-federal revenue sources). "S Natural resources Judiciary Al other 2) The state budget gives schools a funding boost, but there is no direct funding for full-day pre- K K ar SE CPPP applauded the fact that public schools got almost $9 billion more in state aid in 2020-2021, compared to 2018-2019. However, more than $5 billion of the new education funding replaces local property taxes that will not be collected due to HB 3's school finance formula changes. This is money that could have increased spending per student but instead goes to replacing school property taxes. As a result, state and local formula spending per student (based on average daily school attendance) goes up less than 7 percent a year. Also, looking just at the school formulas - not grants outside the formulas - the state share of preK-12 funding rises from 38 percent in 2019 to 45 percent in 2020, and to 43 percent in 2021. (See Table A-10 in the Comptroller's Certification Revenue Estimate.) The state share will grow over time under the new HB 3 formulas because the state is "buying down" the local tax rate, which will likely hamper future education investments. Also, despite what you may hear, HB 3 did not create direct funding for full-day pre-K, meaning pre-K enrollment will continue to count as half a student for funding purposes. 3) State support for health and human services has dropped and could end up being a real An 28 Insert Format Arrange View Share Window Help Final exam Fall 2020 - ST T Rv 125% Zoom View Add Page Insert Table Chart Text Shape Media Comment & Mental and behavioral health FINAL BUDGET $4.4 billion For programs outside of Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program HOUSE SENATE S5 billion S4.1 billion For programs outside of Medicaid for programs outside of Medicaid and the Children's Health and the Children's Health Insurance Program Insurance Program oni Lawmakers compromised on mental health funding. They also included in the supplemental budget $445 million from the state savings account to construct new mental hospital beds, including a 100-bed unit at Rusk State Hospital, a 240-bed replacement campus of the Austin State Hospital and a 300-bed replacement campus of the San Antonio State Hospital. 20 ta at https://apps.texastribune.org/features/2019/house-senate-texas-budgets-2020/ SE Texas' Budget Could Take Massive Hit as Coronavirus Crisis Continues Unfolding, Lawmakers Learn Comptroller Glenn Hegar briefed Texas House members on the state's economy and budget Sunday night, saying that while it was too soon for specific forecasts, both are expected to take potentially massive hits in the wake of the new coronavirus pandemic, according to multiple people who were on the conference call. The members-only call, led by House Speaker Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, was one of state lawmakers' first glimpses of the impact the virus is expected to have on multiple industries, state finances and Texas' largely oil-fed Anvings account, known as the Economic Stabilization Fund or the rainy day fund. Hegar, who referred to the state of the economy as "the current recession, according to multiple people on the roughly hourlong call, predicted both the general revenue for the state budget and the savings account balance will be drastically lower - possibly by billions of dollars — when he makes a revised fiscal forecast. He said that update could happen in July. Later Sunday, the comptroller's office said that unless the Legislature spent money out of the 28 Purchase answer to see full attachment Explanation & Answer: 2 Questions Tags: government of Texas state of Texas in 2021 Predicted Challenges in Texas Name User generated content is uploaded by users for the purposes of learning and should be used following Studypool's honor code & terms of service.