All Revenue Options are 'On The Table'
In Texas, we face a budget deficit in excess of $9 billion. Our debate is driven primarily by public education financing issues. Many leading lawmakers want to revamp the method for funding our public schools and thus are considering major state tax policy changes that can affect our citizens and businesses alike. Some of these changes could provide tax relief in some areas, such as lowering property taxes, while adjusting others taxes, such as raising the state sales tax, or eliminating the state business franchise tax altogether in favor of a new (and as yet undescribed) "business activity tax."
While everything is on the table in this major tax policy shift scenario, to date lawmakers are not specifically looking to raise money by eliminating the Texas state-chartered credit union franchise tax exemption for credit unions. The revenue that the state might gain from that is incredibly small. Savvy lawmakers would weigh that small gain versus the good local credit unions do in their communities (and the potential painful public outcry from some of the outraged 6.6-million Texas credit union members). More to the point, the amount lawmakers need to raise to fund public education is in the billions-hurting us does not remotely help them resolve that issue.
We remain vigilant and watchful. Credit unions are good public policy, and benefit lawmaker constituents enormously, and we will not back away from that position under any circumstances.