K-12 Tax & Spending Climate: State Tax & Spending Choices

Wall Street Journal:

Democrats and their interest groups are whining about his proposed spending “cuts,” which are merely smaller increases. Mr. Newsom says federal largesse from last year’s infrastructure bill and Inflation Reduction Act will offset alleged cuts to climate and public-transit spending, and no doubt he’s right.

But it’s no small irony that Texans are now benefitting tremendously from the growing global demand for oil and gas, which Mr. Newsom and friends are trying to eliminate. Texas’s oil and gas tax revenue has grown $5.3 billion since 2019 owing to higher commodity prices and increasing production in the Permian basin.

Yet Texas’s budget isn’t nearly as dependent on oil and gas as California’s is on Silicon Valley. Much of Texas’s surplus this year owes to surging sales-tax revenue from inflation and population growth—i.e., Californians moving to Texas and spending their tax savings.

Mr. Newsom claimed Tuesday that California has a more “fair” tax system than the Lone Star State and that Texans pay more in taxes. This is disinformation. According to the Census Bureau, California’s per capita state tax collections ($6,325) were second highest in the country in 2021 after Vermont. Texas’s ($2,214) were second lowest after Alaska.

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