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Article VI:
Natural Resources

Article VI agencies include the Texas Department of Agriculture, Texas Railroad Commission, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, General Land Office (GLO), Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (formerly the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission, or TNRCC) and a number of other boards and commissions primarily devoted to the protection of Texas’ natural resources.

Total expenditures for programs in Article VI agencies rose from $548.5 million in fiscal 1990 to nearly $1.3 billion in 2002, an increase of 144.2 percent; in 1990 dollars, the total rose to $1 billion, an 83 percent increase. Article VI expenditures for 2002 made up 2.5 percent of all expenditures used in the statewide index calculation.

The review team created 40 expenditure indices for Article VI agencies, the majority of them employing population as a workload measure. Some used more specific measures; for example, the index for Commission on Environmental Quality petroleum storage tank cleanup reimbursements was calculated in terms of cost per registered petroleum tank.

The Article VI expenditure index was 3.49 in fiscal 2002, representing a combined 249 percent increase in expenditures per unit served since 1990.

The largest individual Article VI indices for 2002 include:

26.48, for Commission on Environmental Quality grant expenditures. Spending under this index rose from $760,488 in fiscal 1991 to $26.1 million in 2002 (no grant expenditures were reported in fiscal 1990). In real (1990) dollars, the 2002 total was $19.3 million. This index accounted for 2 percent of all Article VI spending in 2002.

17.08, for the Department of Agriculture’s grant expenditures. Total expenditures under this index rose from $124,866 in fiscal 1990 to $3.6 million in 2002, a 2,789.8 percent increase; real expenditures rose to $2.7 million in 2002. Real grant expenditures per 10,000 Texans rose by 1,608 percent during the study period. The 2001 Legislature transferred the grant-making function of the Commission on Environmental Quality’s Weather Modification Program to the Department of Agriculture with fiscal 2002 appropriations of $2.5 million, accounting for much of the increase. This index accounted for just 0.3 percent of all Article VI spending in 2002.

10.21, for the Water Development Board’s grant and loan expenditures. Total expenditures for the index rose from $795,452 in 1990 to $81.3 million in 2002 (10,127 percent) or to $60.3 million in real (1990) dollars (7,475 percent). The number of total grants and loans awarded for research and construction programs (the workload measure in this case) rose from 12 to 89 over the study period, an increase of 641.7 percent. Expenditures per grant or loan (the workload measure in this case) rose by 921.3 percent over the 1990-2002 period. This index accounted for 6.1 percent of all Article VI spending in 2002.

The index with the largest share of Article VI 2002 spending was the GLO’s cost of land purchased for resale and housing loans made under the Veterans Land Board program, with $301.2 million or 22.5 percent of the total. Total expenditures in this index rose by 332 percent, from $69.7 million in 1990. In real (1990) dollars, expenditures rose by 264.9 percent. The number of loans issued declined during this period, from 4,075 in 1990 to 2,890 in 2002; the real cost per loan thus rose by 414.5 percent, for a calculated index of 5.15.