Bigger Isn’t Always Better

Everything is bigger in Texas. We take pride in the fact that here our trucks, guns and football stadiums make the rest of the country drool with envy…or at least that’s what we are led to believe. Texas truly is the place where BIG things happen, but regrettably this trend also applies to our bureaucracy.

Fortunately this November Texans have an opportunity to do something about the problem of exorbitant government.

Proposition 5 will appear on the ballot in this form:

“The constitutional amendment authorizing the legislature to allow cities or counties to enter into interlocal contracts with other cities or counties without the imposition of a tax or the provision of a sinking fund.”

Currently, when local cities or counties enter into contracts with one another lasting longer than one year a debt is constituted, thus requiring the levying of a tax and creation of a sinking fund. The problem with this is local governments hesitate to invest in large scale projects with one another because tax increases would be required.

Instead, cities and counties duplicate projects and provide similar, if not identical, services on their own so that no tax imposition takes place. And we wonder why we have so many shortfalls in our budget.

Proposition 5 would allow cities and counties to enter into contracts with each other for longer than one year without automatically having to execute a tax.  This increased flexibility would encourage local governments to budget responsibly. Therefore, consolidating and coordinating projects and services, while reducing the duplication of efforts and costs to taxpayers.

This commonsense solution to interlocal contracts and services is one that Texans should support, especially in the current economic climate. With a Legislature too afraid to make meaningful cuts to spending, Proposition 5 is an opportunity for taxpayers to do what those in Austin won’t. Despite the notion that bigger is always better in the Lone Star State, when it comes to government, it’s time to buck the stereotype.

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