The Senate Finance Committee adopted the Committee Substitute for Senate Bill 1 on Tuesday, March 30. CSSB 1 expends $250.7 billion in all funds, and $124.3 billion in general revenue-related funds, with most of the latter amount subject to the constitutional “pay-as-you-go” spending limit. Compared with SB 1, as introduced, this spending represents a $498.4 million reduction in all funds and a $1.75 billion reduction in general revenue funds. Funding of importance to counties in CSSB 1 includes:
- $30 million for contracted inpatient mental health beds in rural and urban areas, which potentially provides relief for county sheriffs housing jail inmates with mental health issues.
- $7.4 million in restored funding for prevention, intervention and commitment diversion grants to juvenile probation departments.
- $1.4 million to conduct election training for county officials.
- $1.3 million for six additional positions and funds to oversee law enforcement training at the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement.
- $71.4 million to fund 70 new maximum-security unit beds at Kerrville State Hospital, and partially fund beds at the new inpatient mental health facility in Harris County.
- A $13.6 million increase in funding out of estimated sporting goods sales tax receipts for local park grants.
CSSB 1 does not include funding to restore the 5% reduction in funding for indigent defense grants, nor does it provide funds to complete construction of the Austin and San Antonio state mental health hospitals. Instead, these and other items of importance to counties were not funded or were placed in Article XI, the wish list article that consists of unfunded budget requests that may be considered for funding should additional revenue become available. CSSB 1 will be eligible to be heard by the full Senate on Tuesday, April 6.
For more on items of importance to counties in CSSB 1, see this State Budget Worksheet. For an overview of CSSB 1, see the Legislative Budget Board’s Summary of CSSB 1.
For more information on this article, contact Zelma Smith.