Texas Guides

General Guides to Texas Websites

Texas Record and Information Locator (TRAIL)
TRAIL searches and locates information from more than 180 Texas state agency web servers.
About Texas
Online information for/from/about the Lone Star State. From the Texas State Library.
Texas State Agency Databases
A listing of publicly searchable databases produced by agencies of the State of Texas. From the Government Documents Round Table (GODORT) of the American Library Association.

Government Sites

Official website for State of Texas. Can order vital records, renew driver's license, and apply for or renew a professional license. Options include Find Services, Explore Texas, Resident, Business, Government, and Texas by Texas.
State and Local Government Information on the Net: Texas
Nongovernment web site with links to legislative, judicial, and executive branch sites, as well as regional, county, and city pages. Well organized and updated frequently. Emphasis on official sites -- servers or content controlled by the government in question.
Texas State and Local Government (Library of Congress)
Selected links to state and local information as well as court websites.
State Agencies (Texas.gov)
May browse or filter over 170 entries.
Legislative Reference Library of Texas
General information includes: Contacting your legislator, Texas bill status, State agency hotlines and citizen assistance, Legislative agencies and the legislative process in Texas, Other Libraries, and Public policy resources.
Socialize (Texas.gov)
Scroll up to click on button to "More Social Media." Access to social media for Texas associations/organizations, higher education, judicial, local, and state entities. Over 360 links to browse or filter.

State Law and Legislation

Texas Legislature Online
Full text of the Texas Constitution, current statutes, and bills from the 71st (1989) through the present legislatures. Also includes bill histories, Senate and House membership, committee membership, and legislative calendars. Search for your legislator's name and address by city, county, zip code, etc. The bills database is searchable by bill number, sponsor, or full text. The legislature meets every two years, convening in January during odd-numbered years.
Texas Administrative Code
An agency/subject codification of current Texas regulations. Organized by broad, general subject and then by agency.
Texas Register
Proposed and adopted Texas regulations as well as Open Meeting notices and other official announcements. Available in two formats: HTML and PDF. Archived issues (1976 to present) from the University of North Texas.
Attorney General Opinions
While not binding on the courts, AG opinions are regarded by Texas courts as highly persuasive and entitled to great weight. Click on "Index to Opinions" to link to full-text in PDF from 1939 to present.

State Finances

Information from the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts. Tabs for Taxes, Transparency, Economy, Purchasing, and Programs.
State Budget (General Appropriations Act)
From the Legislative Budget Board. To view archived editions, scroll down and click on "More State Budgets." Drop-down menu for "Select a Texas State Budget" has 1986-1987 to the present.
Summary of Legislative Budget Estimates
From the Legislative Budget Board's State Budget page. Click on the current link to "Budget Documents by Session." Available from the 76th Legislature (2000-2001) to the present. Select desired legislature. Path to Budget Estimates will vary by legislative session. For example, 2018-2019 House Summary PDF document of Legislative Budget Estimates is under the tab "LBB Recommended: House" and then the link to "Summaries." The 2018-2019 Senate Summary PDF document is under the tab "LLB Recommended: Senate." The 84th Legislature (2016-2017) links are under the tabs for "Introduced: House" and "Introduced Senate." The only link for the 79th Legislature (2006-2007) is under the tab for "Introduced: House." The only link for the 78th Legislature (2004-2005) is under the tab for "Introduced."
Legislative Budget Board
The Legislative Budget Board is a permanent committee of the Texas legislature which is "responsible for developing recommended legislative appropriations for all agencies of state government."
Texas Transparency: Reports
Includes the Biennial Revenue Estimate (2006-2007 to present) and Texas State Expenditures by County. From the Texas Comptroller.
Key Economic Indicators Dataset
Information from the Texas Comptroller posted on Texas' official Open Data Portal. Brief overview of Key Economic Indicators also available directly from the Texas Comptroller.
State Revenue and Spending
For the State of Texas. Includes link to "Explore Revenue and Expenditure Dashboard" that explains viewing options in the visualization tool. For Expenditures on the dashboard, can search by expenditure category, agency, appropriation fund, or comptroller object. From the Comptroller.

State Resources for Business

Texas Taxes
Links to Texas tax rules by subject, Tax Code, tax forms, sales tax information, and publications. Also includes the State Tax Automated Research (STAR) System which provides "a comprehensive online tax policy research system." From the Comptroller.
Start a Business in Texas
From the Office of the Governor, Texas Economic Development. Seven basic steps for starting a business in Texas. Includes links to the Texas Startup Resource Directory and the Texas Business Licenses and Permits Guide. Option for Spanish language version.
Texas Economic Development
Wealth of information. Topics include Incentives, Small Business, International, and Resources. Don't miss the mapping and demographics options in the Texas Site Search. The Reports and Publications page includes resources on the Texas Economy. From the Office of the Governor, Texas Economic Development.

State Data and Statistics

Open Data Portal (data.texas.gov)
Links to open datasets from Texas government agencies. Somewhat spotty content and time-consuming to navigate. Can browse by categories such as Agriculture, Education and Social Services, and Veteran. Can also search or use the catalog to filter over 3,000 resources by agency or type (such as calendar, forms, and maps). Includes data such as Texas Regional Economic Snapshots. Perhaps best results come from viewing the entire catalog and filtering by tags such as child protection, county, and databook. Good results for Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts.
Texas Transparency: Data Center
From the Texas State Comptroller. Has open data and also information. Options include: Search Datasets, Contracts, Comptroller's Databases, Other Agency Databases, Dashboards, Debt Lookup, Public Pension Search Tool, and Other Reports Available to Local Jurisdictions.
Texas Transparency: Data Center - Search Datasets
From the Texas State Comptroller. Search datasets by keyword or browse by topic. Topics are Expenditures, Procurement, Reference, Revenue, and Taxes and Fees. The Comptroller is in the process of transferring all their dataset files to Find all Comptroller data on Texas' official Open Data Portal.
Open Data Portal: Government & Taxes
Includes information on how taxes are spent. Over 100 entries. Can filter by types of information, such as external datasets and datasets.
Sources of Revenue: A History of State Taxes and Fees in Texas, 1972 to 2016
A quick guide to a history of Texas state revenue sources.
Texas Demographic Center
Serves as an official source of Texas demographic, economic, and social statistics produced by the U.S. Census Bureau. An official State Data Center.
Texas Labor Market Information
Texas wage analysis, economic trends, and projected occupations. Replaced TRACER2. From the Texas Workforce Commission.
Texas Labor Analysis
Can compare current labor demand and supply for selected occupations to show an occupation shortage or overage by region. From the Texas Workforce Commission.
Texas Higher Education Data
A compendium of Texas higher education statistics, and research. From the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB).
Rand State Statistics
More than 110 databases of statistics information--much of it available at the national, state, county, and city levels. Categories include business and economics, community, education, energy and environment, government finance, health and socioeconomic, and population and demographics. WTAMU database only available to students, faculty, and staff.

Local Governments

Texas Transparency: Local Government
The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts' Transparency Stars program recognizes local governments that "provide clear and meaningful financial information not only by posting financial documents, but also through summaries, visualizations, downloadable data and other relevant information." Local governments must first submit an application to become a Star.
Texas Association of Regional Councils
Organizing group for the 24 regional councils that coordinate services that cross local government boundaries. Services have included disaster recovery, regional 911 systems, and health services for vulnerable populations.
May browse State & Local Government on the Net for links to state, county, and some city web sites. May search the Texas Municipal League directory by region, county, and city. Link to Texas County Websites goes to “Select a County;” select a county name to view county population and possible link to county’s website. Available from the Texas Association of Counties.