http://news.yahoo.com/texas-legislature-wrestle-over-unexpec............Discover Yahoo! With Your Friends.Login. close.. ... ..This story comes from the Yahoo! Contributor Network, where individuals publish their unique perspectives on some of the world’s most popular websites. Do you have a story to tell? Become a Yahoo! contributor........Texas Legislature to Wrestle Over What to Do with Unexpected Budget Surplus..By Mark Whittington .PostsWebsite .By Mark Whittington | Yahoo! Contributor Network – 20 hrs ago....Email0Share0Share0Print......Bloomberg reports that when the Texas Legislature begins its 2013 session it will face a problem that most states will kill for. Texas will likely have a budget surplus of around $8 billion. The question arises, how to spend it? How Texas arrived at a surplus In 2011, when it looked as if Texas was facing a multi-billion-dollar budget deficit, the Texas Legislature cut spending, especially funding for education, Bloomberg notes. However, partly because of the fracking boom, revenues from the sale of oil and gas soared, bringing in unexpected tax revenues. The jobless rate also declined sharply, currently down to 6.2 percent. Revenue from sales taxes has increased as well. Steve LeBlanc, co-founder of CapRidge Partners LLC in Austin, is quoted as suggesting that Texas has the financial strength of Germany and the cost competitiveness of China. Democrats: restore education cuts Democrats in the Texas Legislature sense an opportunity to spend the surplus. The Burnt Orange Report, for example, reflecting Democratic thinking, suggests restoring some or all of the 2011 cuts that were enacted on education funding. Health care funding is another area Democrats are keen to increase. -----------------------------------------------------------Meanwhile Illinois has a 10 billion dollar backlog of bills.RT @iowahawkblog: Idiot slack-jawed anti-science Bible-beater hillbilly Texas legislature lowers taxes, end up with... $8 billion surplus
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