Don’t Spend Our Children’s Future On Today’s Pleasures

March 31, 2011 10:25 am 1 comment

Texas Capital DomeWe are all aware that our nation, as well as the great state of Texas, is in big trouble. Our elected leaders have a spending problem that they are having a hard time admitting to and breaking, but we need it to stop.

There are many groups in Austin lobbying to have their pet projects continued and we do not have the money to continue this. They are now putting pressure on our elected leaders to spend the rainy day fund. While this might solve the immediate problem, it does nothing for our future but digger a bigger hole.

“We the People” did our duty. We all worked hard to get conservative Republicans elected, but now we are all sitting at home while the lobbyists are in Austin massing pressure on the elected to continue to put our children’s future in jeopardy  by continuing to spend our futures on the pleasures of today.

This must stop. The fastest way for the Republican Party to again become the minority party is to continue to do the very things that have put them there in the past. Please take a minute to read this letter and if you agree with it, please clink this link to sign it and let our elected officials know that we stand with them, and support them, in NOT spending away our children’s futures.

Dear Honorable Members:

Our state has a spending problem.  Our current problem is serious enough, but projections tell us that the current biennium is only the beginning.  Swarms of special interest groups and their lobbyists have invaded the Texas Capitol, arguing that the current budget issues can be handled by raiding the Rainy Day Fund, raising taxes, or both.  A longer perspective reveals, however, that these short-term “quick fixes” will do more harm than good in the long run, especially if they serve to delay the hard work necessary to address our state’s long-term spending problem.  If you think Texas doesn’t have a spending problem, consider the following:

The population of Texas increased from 17 million to 25.1 million, between 1990 and 2010, a growth of 48 percent.[1]

Over that same period, “All Funds” appropriations for Texas state government increased from $23.3 billion to $92.7 billion, a growth of nearly 300 percent.[2]

On a per capita basis, Texas state government spending has increased from $1,365 per capita in fiscal year 1990 to $3,648 per capita in fiscal year 2010, a growth of 167 percent per capita [3]

Texas’ state government is clearly growing at an unsustainable rate.

Compounding our current out-of-control spending trends, a fiscal shock wave is coming soon in the form of a projected $14+ billion in new Medicaid spending for the 2014–2015 biennium.[4] This fiscal shock wave is headed straight for us, bringing exploding costs due to federal government mandates and hordes of new enrollees on the way.  All this explosion in government outlays is only intensified by the heavy burden that illegal aliens are placing on Texas taxpayers, estimated by at least one study to total nearly 9 billion dollars per year.[5]

This is not some nightmare doomsday scenario.  This is our likely future, based on reasonable analysis—and this is all on top of our current spending problem.

It is time for state leaders to do the hard work required to get spending under control and balance the state budget without raising taxes, levying new taxes, resorting to accounting gimmicks, or raiding the People’s Savings Account – the Rainy Day Fund.

 

While we understand that you have very tough choices to make and special interest constituencies urging you to spend more, the fact is, we are faced with government growth at every level that we can no longer afford!   Government should not exempt itself from the cost-cutting, benefit reductions, pay cuts, and down-sizing families and businesses have had to face – and still face.  We therefore urge you to:

1.     Cut spending for departments, agencies, and programs that fall outside core constitutional responsibilities.  Zero-based, fiscally-responsible budgetary spending should be directed toward constitutional priorities of public education, law enforcement and justice, and a transportation system of roads, bridges, and drainage infrastructure (not parks, bike and hiking trails).

2.     Vote down spending for non-essential activities such as the underwriting of the Formula 1 race track (2010-2011 biennium budget) and the proposed expansion of a state trust fund to lure events to Cowboys Stadium and other local community venues. When deep cuts are being made to core state functions, it is offensive and reprehensible to spend tax dollars on such frivolous items.  These events should be funded with private sector investments – not by taxpayers!

3.     Redirect dollars freed up by spending cuts to these three priorities:

(a) protecting classroom instruction (teachers and instructional materials) over school district bureaucracy;

(b) protecting Medicaid reimbursements for those providers who serve the indigent and infirm, in particular, nursing homes, and

(c) preserving the Rainy Day Fund to meet the projected $14+ billion in new Medicaid spending for the 2014–2015 biennium budget.

Rising fuel costs, global unrest, and uncertainty driven by escalating federal debt, irresponsible federal spending, and burdensome regulations will continue to hold back the economy.  Texas must survive!

The stakes are very high.  Texas must not become another California!   Last November’s elections were intended to send a strong message: stop unnecessary spending, reduce the size and scope of government down to its core constitutional functions, address the high financial and security costs of illegal aliens, secure ballot and election integrity, and get government out of our way.

We look forward to working with you on these issues, but make no mistake – we are watching the state budget process very closely.  We aren’t going away.  We love liberty, and we are sick and tired of government politicians stealing the future from us, our kids, and our grandkids.  We’re looking for strong, principled statesmen and stateswomen with the courage to protect Texas’ future.  With every vote you cast, you answer the critical question: Are you a politician or a statesman?

Respectfully,

JoAnn Fleming

Executive Director (volunteer)

Grassroots America – We the People of Tyler/Smith County, TX

 

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