After being sworn in as the 25th Comptroller of Public Accounts by Governor-elect Greg Abbott, Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar now faces the nearly impossible task of predicting the financial future of the Texas economy. With rapidly falling oil prices and possible oil company layoffs in the future, predicting the budget revenue estimate for this year’s Texas legislature may well require the use of a crystal ball.
The Texas Comptroller is charged with the enormous task of predicting the future revenue of the state for the coming two years so that the Texas Legislature can develop the biennial budget. Texas is required by the Texas Constitution to have a balanced budget.
During his swearing in ceremony, Hegar pledged to focus on the “constitutional functions including tax collection, accounting and providing a clear revenue estimate to legislators.”
Texas Senator Dan Patrick, the Lieutenant Governor-elect who will take office on January 20th, delivered the opening remarks for Hegar’s swearing in ceremony. Having worked with Hegar for seven years in the Texas Senate, Patrick said, “His fiscal experience and proven leadership with serve the state well.” During his term in the Senate, Hegar served as the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Fiscal Matters. This committee was charged with reviewing all state and local revenue matters. He also served as Chairman of the Sunset Advisory Commission where he used his fiscal conservative values to abolish six state agencies saving millions of taxpayer dollars according to Hegar’s website.
“Texas is lucky to have Glenn as its next Comptroller.” Patrick stated. “He is a man of great integrity who will faithfully serve as the chief financial officer of this state.”
Governor-elect Abbott said “Texas will have a faithful advocate of our growing economy and a watchful steward of Texans’ taxpayer dollars in the Office of Comptroller with Glenn Hegar.” He stressed the importance of Hegar’s experience in reducing government inefficiencies and fiscal conservatism. He pledged to work together with Hegar to work towards a “more fiscally responsible future for generations to come.”
Hegar, in return, promised to work with both Abbott and Patrick “to ensure Texas remains an example to the nation and the world of personal freedom, game-changing innovation and unlimited opportunity.”
Referring to Texas’ massive population growth, Hegar has a comment for those looking to move to the Lone Star State. He said if you are not coming to Texas for the right reasons, don’t come. “If you’re headed to Texas and you have a strong work ethic, the red carpet is rolled out. But if you want to change Texas, then you can turn around and go right back home,” Hegar stated with a smile.
Hegar served as the State Senator for District 18 from 2007 until he resigned last month after being elected to the Comptroller’s Office. Prior to that he served as a State Representative in District 28 (Katy). He was succeeded in the House by the current representative, John Zerwas and in the Senate by the newly elected Senator Lois Kohlkorst.
He is a sixth generation Texan, a farmer and a dedicated family man.
Hegar was accompanied for the presentation of the oath of office on the Senate dias by his wife, Dara Hegar, and the couple’s three children. The oath was officiated by Governor-elect Abbott.
Hegar becomes the third consecutive Republican to hold the office but only the sixth Republican overall. Prior to the Republican’s taking the seat when Carole Keeton Strayhorn was elected in 2009, the last Republican to hold the office was Albert A. Bledsoe who left office in 1873. The longest serving Comptroller in Texas was Robert S. Calvert who held the office from 1949 to 1975 when he was succeeded by Bob Bullock.
Bob Price is a senior political news contributor for Breitbart Texas and a member of the original Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX.