At the July 9th Greater New Braunfels Economic Development Foundation quarterly all-member board luncheon, the keynote presentation was delivered by representatives of the Texas Economic Development Council. TEDC President Carlton Schwab and Sabrina Brown of Sabrina Brown Consulting provided the nearly 160 attendees a recap of the 86th Texas Legislative Session with a focus on economic development.
Brown debuted a short video on the accomplishments that featured Gov. Abbott, whom she had met with recently. Major goals of the Governor along with Lieut. Gov. and Speaker of the House included property tax school finance reform, teacher pay raises, school safety initiatives, natural disaster preparation, and mental health programs. She noted that the Governor had signed Senate Bill 2, the property tax reform bill, on June 12. School property taxes are also capped.
Schwab outlined the six major initiatives of the TEDC including protecting the economic development sales tax, reserving Chapter 312 of the Texas Tax Code, protecting Chapter 313, continuing the Texas Enterprise Fund, maintaining funding for the Texas workforce development programs, and reporting and promoting innovation and entrepreneurship. Only a minor reporting change was made in the economic development sales tax law and Chapter 312 was extended to the year 2029. Action to extend Chapter 313 was not taken that can be taken up the next two sessions. Schwab noted that tourism promotional funds are set at $110 million on an annual basis.