The Technology Task Force will develop and pursue policies that help to ensure that the technology sector remains a prominent part of the state’s future economic growth. The Task Force will also continue to advance technological improvements across the broad array of services offered by the public sector in Texas, from health care and welfare programs, to public education and workforce & skills development.
The technology sector in Texas is particularly strong. Austin now rivals Silicon Valley, with Apple, Google, Facebook, and others joining existing local staples such as Dell, 3M, and National Instruments. It is imperative that Texas continues to grow and that technology remains a prominent part of that growth. While several targeted tax credits and incentives for technology companies and research and development were put in place in 2011 and 2013, the Technology Task Force will work to ensure that the state’s tax structure remains attractive to these types of companies.
The Task Force will also work across numerous policy areas to help ensure that Texas maintains a business and regulatory environment that encourages innovation. For example, advancing the use of telemedicine is critical in a state as vast as Texas, while a vibrant Virtual School Network can help make quality teaching available to every student, no matter his or her geographical location. There are also myriad technological approaches that can improve the administration of health and welfare programs to the benefit of both program participants and state taxpayers. The Task Force will study these issues and make recommendations for specific reforms ahead of the 84th Legislature in 2015.