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Texas House Votes To Dissolve Perry Pet Startup Fund

Governor Rick Perry Outside Travis County Courtroom
Ryan E. Poppe
Texas Public Radio
Governor Rick Perry Outside Travis County Courtroom

AUSTIN — The Texas House has preliminarily passed a plan revamping the state’s economic incentive programs, including dissolving a pet fund of Rick Perry that funneled $200 million in taxpayer dollars to startups.

Lawmakers used a simple voice vote Thursday to advance the measure, which Perry’s successor, Gov. Greg Abbott, has prioritized. It eliminates the Emerging Technology Fund. Perry said the fund had spurred Texas’ economy, but critics note it funded some firms that didn’t create jobs or went bankrupt.

Another taxpayer-fueled fund for events would be renamed the Major Events Reimbursement Program. The bill would also create the Governor/s University Research Initiative, which will provide matching funds to Texas schools to recruit top faculty.

The House vote comes a day after the Senate passed a similar proposal scrapping the Emerging Technology Fund.

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