Gov. Greg Abbott has signed Senate Bill 8, legislation appropriating funds from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA).
When Congress passed ARPA earlier this year, it designated roughly $16 billion to Texas. Once the state received those funds, it was up to the legislature to appropriate the money as they deemed necessary within the parameters set forth by Congress.
NFIB joined several other business groups in successfully advocating for $7.2 billion to be allocated toward the state unemployment insurance program. During the COVID-19 shutdowns, the state borrowed this same amount from the federal government in an effort to keep the program solvent without raising rates on businesses.
Now, with the allocation of these funds, the state can pay off that debt without having to raise rates on businesses. In addition to the UI funds, NFIB also successfully advocated for $500 million to be dedicated toward rural broadband development and an additional $180 million in economic recovery grants for the travel, tourism, and hospitality industries.