Senate Approves State Budget
Austin, Texas--Today the Texas Senate approved Senate Bill 1, the Senate's version of the State's Budget Bill. The budget now goes to the House and ultimately will be finalized by the Conference Committee on the Appropriations Bill.
Senator Eddie Lucio, Jr., commented today on the Senate's version of the budget:
"Compared to the budget that the state adopted two years ago, this budget is a step in the right direction. Is it the finalized version of our State Appropriations? Definitely no. Is there room for improvement? Definitely yes," said Sen. Lucio.
"Much is left to be seen regarding what happens in the Conference Committee on the Appropriations Bill. Today's vote was a vote cast with the understanding that many of the items that have not been completely addressed will be resolved by the Conference Committee," added Sen. Lucio.
Selected Highlights of Senate Bill 1 (as reported in material provided by the Finance Committee):
Under Article II -- Health and Human Services Agencies:
- $55.7 million General Revenue (GR) to restore mental health, podiatry services and vision services for Medicaid adults to Fiscal Year (FY) 2003 levels.
- Partially restores Medicaid coverage for medically needy adults.
- Increases funding for nursing homes and community providers by $52 million in GR/$129.5 million in all funds to address client acuity increases.
- Total funding for the Children's Health Insurance Program is $351 million GR/$1,070.4 million all funds; this is an increase of about 8% in all funds above Fiscal Years 2004-2005.
- For the Department of Family and Protective Services, a total GR increase of FY 2006-2007 is $236 million. This reflects a 43% increase in GR funding above FY 2004-2005 budgeted/expended levels of $549.1 million.
- Restores funding to FY 2003 levels for prevention programs such as At-Risk Youth Mentoring, Community Youth Development, Healthy Families, and Parent as Teachers.
- Appropriates a total of $126.7 million GR/$246.7 million. All Funds to address waiting/interest lists and to serve an additional 11,920 people currently on various waiting lists in FY 2006-2007 in Article II -- Health and Human Services Agencies.
Article III -- Higher Education Agencies:
- $1,902.8 million in All Funds to 2-year Institutions for an increase of $196.1 million (11.5%) over FY 04-05
- $5,618.8 million in All Funds to General Academic Institutions for an increase of $392.3 million (7.5%) over FY 04-05.
- $6,079.6 million in All Funds to Health Related Institutions for an increase of $650.2 million (12.0%) over FY 04-05.
- Under General Academic Institutions -- Restores 5% to non-formula items ($41 million); and adds $290 million new General Revenue for total $3,880.7 million GR funding.
- Under Health Related Institutions -- Restores 5% to non-formula items -- $39.2 million; and adds $108 million new General Revenue for a total of $1,9473.million GR funding.