Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Feb. 5, 2015
(AUSTIN) — Governor Greg Abbott and Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar today announced a joint proposal to transfer the state's four events trust fund programs to the Governor's Economic Development and Tourism Division in an effort to strengthen the state's economic development strategy.
“Since being sworn into office, I have been conducting a top-down review of this agency to ensure Texas taxpayers can trust the Comptroller's office to be a model of efficiency, transparency and accountability. My top priority is protecting Texas taxpayers,” stated Hegar. “To achieve that goal, I believe this agency must renew its focus on the core functions of the Comptroller and reform programs that fall outside that focus. Governor Abbott and I both believe these programs, including the Major Events Trust Fund and Events Trust Fund, would operate more efficiently, more effectively and with greater accountability to taxpayers within the Governor's Economic Development and Tourism Division.”
The Trust Funds serve to attract a wide variety of events and tourist activity to the state by applying local and state gains from sales and use, auto rental, hotel and alcoholic beverage taxes to pay costs associated with hosting events.
The Governor's Economic Development and Tourism Division is responsible for maintaining an effective tourism campaign and partnering with local convention and visitors bureaus, chambers of commerce and private travel organizations to promote Texas' economic growth in domestic and international tourism.
“As part of our broader efforts to maximize efficiency and accountability in state government, Comptroller Hegar and I have identified weaknesses in Texas' economic development programs and provided a roadmap for reform that will optimize our state's economic development strategy,” said Governor Abbott. “The transfer of these programs to the Governor's Economic Development and Tourism Division will leverage our existing economic resources and promote Texas as a world-class commercial destination nationally and globally.”
Both the Governor and the Comptroller are calling on members of the Legislature to work with them in reforming the Funds and restructuring the programs in a way that maximizes efficiency and transparency.
“Governor Abbott and I share a commitment to increasing accountability and eliminating waste, fraud and abuse,” added Hegar. “Reforming these programs is a significant step, and we are ready to work with the Legislature to achieve those goals.”
In 2015, the Texas Legislature passed House Bill 855, which requires state agencies to publish a list of the three most commonly used Web browsers on their websites. The Texas Comptroller’s most commonly used Web browsers are Google Chrome, Microsoft Internet Explorer and Apple Safari.