Transfer of $2.27 Billion Into State Highway and Rainy Day Funds
AUSTIN, November 25, 2015 – Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar announced today the transfer of $2.27 billion into the State Highway Fund and the Economic Stabilization Fund (ESF), which is commonly known as the Rainy Day Fund. Each fund received more than $1.13 billion, or 50 percent of the total transfer.
The transfer amounts are based on whether oil production and natural gas production tax revenues exceed 1987 collections. If either tax is greater than the 1987 threshold, an amount equal to 75 percent of the excess is transferred.
In November 2014, a constitutional amendment was passed allocating at least one-half of these severance taxes to the ESF and the remainder to the State Highway Fund for use on non-toll highway construction, maintenance and right-of-way acquisition.
The transfer to the ESF must occur within 90 days following the end of the fiscal year according to the Texas Constitution. At the end of the state’s fiscal year — Aug. 31, 2015 — the balance in the ESF was $8.46 billion. The new balance after today’s transfer will be $9.61 billion.
“The state’s Rainy Day Fund is now at a record high, allowing the state to maintain a strong fiscal position and protect against unforeseen circumstances,” Hegar said. “Additionally, this healthy transfer to the State Highway Fund will help address the state’s growing transportation needs. All of which will help Texas uphold a strong and healthy economy.”