Home – Hurricane Harvey Big Short-Term Blow to TX Budget:

Hurricane Harvey Big Short-Term Blow to TX Budget:

Texas state Comptroller Glenn Hegar (R) said last week that the cost of responding to Hurricane Harvey, including dispatching first responders, repairing roads and aiding affected schools, could reach $2 billion in the current two-year budget cycle.

 

“On the expenditure side, this hurricane event is going to cost more than anything we’ve had before,” he said.

 

But he also indicated that the state’s economy looked good going forward.

 

“In fiscal 2017, the Texas economy returned to its normal pattern of growth in excess of the national rate of growth. We are projecting continued modest expansion of the Texas economy in this biennium,” he said in a letter to state leaders accompanying his certified revenue estimate for 2018-19. “The most likely scenario is one of steady expansion after a brief slowdown due to Hurricane Harvey.”

 

The rosy outlook after such a big revenue hit doesn’t surprise Dale Craymer, president of the Texas Taxpayers and Research Association and a former chief revenue estimator for the state comptroller’s office.

 

“All of a sudden, three months later, there are huge lines at Home Depot and everyone’s buying building supplies,” he said. “You have to spend $50,000 on building materials and lumber to recreate that house, so you get a lot of sales tax money from that.” (TEXAS TRIBUNE)