84(R) - 2015
Transportation & Infrastructure
Proposing a constitutional amendment prescribing the purposes for which revenue from motor vehicle registration fees, certain motor vehicle-related taxes, and certain revenues received from the federal government may be used.
A fiscal note dated April 17, 2015 anticipates a two-year negative net impact to General Revenue Related Funds of $118,681 through the biennium ending August 31, 2017, which is the cost to the state for publication of the resolution.
However, the fiscal note adds that, assuming appropriation levels used in the current biennium, the bill would result in a negative General Revenue Related impact of ($561,060,182) beginning in fiscal year 2018 to
replace no longer using Fund 6 for the purposes authorized under current law.
The bill would make no appropriation but could provide the legal basis for an appropriation of funds to implement the provisions of the bill.
The Texas Constitution currently requires that money collected from motor vehicle registration fees and all taxes, except gross production and ad valorem taxes, on motor fuels and lubricants used to propel motor vehicles over public roadways be used to acquire rights-of-way, to build, to maintain and to police public roads, as well as "for the administration of such laws as may be prescribed by the Legislature pertaining to the supervision of traffic and safety on such roads; and for the payment of the principal and interest on county and road district bonds or warrants voted or issued prior to January 2, 1939, and declared eligible prior to January 2, 1945, for payment out of the County and Road District Highway Fund under existing law."
Senate Joint Resolution 12, along with its enabling legislation SB 139, would amend the Texas Constitution to require that the revenues from the sources mentioned above be used only for the purpose of acquiring right-of-way, and constructing or maintaining public roads.
Senate Joint Resolution 12 and its constitutional amendment must be approved by voters.
Vote Recommendation Notes
Senate Joint Resolution 12 would stop the currently allowed appropriation of money from the State Highway Fund to the Department of Public Safety for the policing of public roads. Ending this diversion would mean that the Department of Transportation would receive more money to improve, repair or build new roads in Texas.
Senate Joint Resolution 12, along with its enabling legislation Senate Bill 139, would allow more transparency for taxpayers and accountability from state government since revenue dedicated to the State Highway Fund, also known as Fund 6, would be appropriated for its intended purpose. We support Senate Joint Resolution 12.