Texas Lieut. Gov. David Dewhurst wants state senators to look everywhere, even under rocks, to find $5 billion in savings and non-tax revenue to help cover a revenue gap of between $15 billion and $23 billion over the next two-year budget cycle.
Dewhurst asked Sen. Steve Ogden, R-Bryan, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, to form a new subcommittee to determine where to find the extra funds.
“We need to conduct a thorough review of the budget and look closely at every cost-saving alternative before there is any further discussion about tapping into the rainy-day fund,” said Dewhurst, a Republican.
“Texas taxpayers cannot afford for the Legislature to leave any stone unturned,” he added.
Sen. Robert Duncan, R-Lubbock, will serve as chairman of the new subcommittee on fiscal matters.
Duncan said his panel would evaluate cost-savings proposals, explore non-tax revenue alternatives, and review the details of unspent fund balances held by government entities before making any final recommendations to the full committee.