Conservative and libertarian groups are complaining of'California-like' levels of spending as the 2013 session of the Legislature comes to an end, 1200 WAOI news reprots.
"Texans will be shocked to learn of the details of all the spending that went on this session, culminating with the new state budget," said Chuck DeVore of the libertarian Texas Public Policy Foundation. "Compared with the spending in the 2011 session, we are up $22 billion, a 26 percent increase."
DeVore said despite the massive increase in spending, taxpayers will see little benefit in the form of tax cuts. He says projected tax relief today stands at just half of the $1.7 billion proposed by Governor Perry.
"As a former California lawmaker, I know a California style spending spree when I see one."
It is generally agreed that majority Republicans were outmaneuvered by Democrats in the current session. Many key Republican priorities, including mandating drug testing for welfare benefits, imposing new restrictions on abortion, allowing students to carry guns on campus, and imposing hard caps on governmetn spending, have failed.
Democrats won major victories in the proposed water development plan and the budget, both of which remain to be finalized.
"The fact is that the stage is set for Texas to see the largest biennial spending increase in a long time," the TPPF's James Quintero said. "This is not the reason Texas voters sent the 83rd Legislture to Austin.
Republicans, including Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst, who is facing a re-election challenge from Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson and is certain to face criticism of his management of the Legislative session, are calling for a special session to revisit many Republican priorities.