Taxpayers urged to contact lawmakers

AUSTIN, Texas – More than 29,000 households in eight senatorial districts are receiving mail about the importance returning Texas’ record budget surplus to taxpayers. The president of Texans for Fiscal Responsibility said taxpayers deserve to see further tax relief at the top of the Legislature’s priorities.

“There are many in Austin arguing that programs, agencies and bureaucracies ‘deserve’ those funds first, with taxpayers lucky to get any leftovers,” said Michael Quinn Sullivan. “Too often the voices of hard-working Texans are drowned out by the shrill demands of special interests seeking more from the taxpayers’ wallet.”

Sullivan said eight senatorial districts were selected for this communication effort, given the senators’ unique roles as committee chairs, serving on the Finance Committee, and leadership. The senators are Kim Brimer, John Carona, Robert Duncan, Kyle Janek, Jane Nelson, Steve Ogden, Florence Shapiro and Tommy Williams.

“These senators are men and women of good will seeking to do the right thing for Texas’ taxpayers. They need to know their constituents support efforts to make returning the surplus to taxpayers a higher priority than growing the size of government,” he said.

The certified surplus represents more than $1,780 per Texas household.

Sullivan said lawmakers should use the surplus to further reduce property taxes or reduce the impact of the recently enacted business tax.

“Now is not the time to grow government. Put the surplus back into the productive economy where families and businesses can invest in their future – Texas’ future,” he said. “Immediate tax relief should be provided, to ensure a strong, healthy economy. Spending the surplus commits taxpayers to even higher costs of government in the future.”

This initial mail program will be followed by similar informational efforts in other House and Senate districts. Sullivan noted that TFR (www.EmpowerTexans.com) will be rating legislators’ votes on tax relief and other budget reform issues.

“We seek to empower Texans with the information necessary to be actively engaged in the legislative session. Input from individuals shouldering the cost of government can only help lawmakers make well-informed policy decisions,” added Sullivan

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