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Summary: HB 1967 relates to economic development corporations established under Chapter 501, Local Government Code. These corporations are used by governing units, such as counties, to finance economic development projects on the unit’s behalf, primarily through the issuance of bonds. Governing units can also contract with these corporations under Chapter 380.002, which allows home-rule municipalities with more than 100,000 people spend taxpayer money for economic development purposes. Except in the case of these home-rule municipalities, a unit may not grant public money or lend credit or another thing of value for the aid of a corporation.
HB 1967 would amend code to allow economic development corporations in municipalities with more than 10,000 people, in counties bordering the Gulf of Mexico or Gulf Intracoastal Highway, and that has or is included in a metropolitan statistical area of Texas that has had an unemployment rate at least 2% above Texas’ average for the most recent two consecutive years that statistics are available. A corporation may spend tax revenue received under this title to provide job training and job-related life skills help unemployed individuals obtain employment. Corporations can contract with any person to provide this job training.
Analysis: HB 1967 allows an economic development corporation to fund job training programs in the specific bracketed counties. This will not constitute new spending; rather, it would shift existing funds for this specific purpose. This legislation neither uplifts nor offends our liberty principles, therefore we remain neutral.