Texas Ed: Comments on Education from Texas

May 8, 2007

But $200 million would be too expensive

Filed under: Education Finance, education priorities — texased @ 9:07 pm

House OKs plan to suspend gas tax for summer | Chron.com – Houston Chronicle

The Texas House tentatively adopted a measure today that would suspend the state’s 20-cent gas tax through the summer months.

That would mean an immediate 20-cent drop in the price per gallon.

House OKs plan to suspend gas tax for summer | Chron.com – Houston Chronicle

While the state is sitting on a record surplus, state leaders have suggested saving that money in order to give property tax relief in two years. Perry has suggested using some of the nearly $8 billion expected to be left unspent to give Texas homeowners more property tax relief.

Martinez Fischer said the proposal could cost anywhere from $500,000 to $700 million.

But, he added, it only seemed fair to give Texans a break from soaring gas prices when airlines already are exempt from state fuel taxes.

And Senator Tommy Williams thinks it’s too expensive to fund college tuition breaks for top ten percent graduates because the cost could “balloon to $200 million by 2012”. Guess who sponsored the fuel tax cut in the senate? Tommy Williams.

So short term tax relief for a lot of people with no future benefit to the state is good. Long term investment of money to improve the state’s education levels and ultimately its economic performance is bad.

It’s sort of a vicious circle isn’t it? We elect idiots who reduce access to education with the result being electing more idiots. Or maybe it’s something else, Williams is just protecting the privileged status of well to do Texans by reducing the rest of the population’s access to the class through education.

Think about it. The fuel tax cut will go to those with the most cars who drive the most. So rich people driving SUVs all around town will be spared the hardship of higher summer gas prices while the less fortunate (or those interested in reducing pollution and traffic congestion) take the bus and get nothing. But I’m sure the economic benefits of this fuel tax reduction will ripple through the Texas economy for years to come–just not in a positive way.

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