According to State Comptroller Susan Combs, Texas lawmakers will have will have $101.4 billion to work with during the next legislative session. Combs said the estimated $96 billion in revenue from taxes, fees and other sources is up nearly $20 billion from previous years.
"General revenue collections in 2008 and 2009 -- leading into the [legislative] session -- totaled $79.6 billion," Combs said. "In 2010 - 2011, as we hit bottom and began to climb out the revenues were $4.5 billion less."
$3.6 billion from this year's revenue is being set aside for the rainy day fund, which currently has $8.1 billion and will reach $11 billion if left untapped.
The current biennium ends in August and about $8 billion is expected to be left over, giving Texas its $100 billion estimate. A $27 billion shortfall was predicted right before the 2011 session, which prompted massive cuts throughout the state including a $5 billion hit to education.
Now lawmakers like San Antonio Representative Mike Villarreal are calling the slash to education unnecessary and asking for the $8 billion surplus to restore the cuts implanted last session.