Austin Next

With an estimated 10 million more Texans calling the state home by 2036, it's important that we address the big challenges that come with growth. Texas 2036 is focused on providing nonpartisan ideas and data-driven solutions to break through the gridlock on issues that matter most to all Texans. In this episode, we are joined by AJ Rodriguez, Executive Vice President of Texas 2036, and John Hryhorchuk, SVP of Policy and Advocacy. We delve into the role of Texas 2036 in shaping the state's narrative and vision for the future, as well as discussing the organization's focus on the intersection of policy, data, and advocacy. 

Episode Highlights
  • The budget for the current legislative session in Texas is expected to be different due to the historic surplus.
  • The stability of Texas' state budget is due to a combination of factors, including a lack of state income tax, a reliance on sales tax, property taxes, oil industry taxes, and economic stabilization funds.
  • The Texas 2036 organization and legislators are discussing the state's K-12 and university systems. 
  • There is a growing recognition that there are multiple pathways to earning a living wage in Texas, and that skills-based hiring and industry-based credentials are becoming increasingly important.
  • There are new ideas in community college funding by moving away from a model focused on credit hours and towards performance-based funding model looking at student outcomes.
  • What’s next Austin? “We are blessed to have so many people moving to Texas. We're blessed to have population growth. We need more water, right? We need more roads. We need to make sure our education system is working for our children.”

Episode Links
Texas 2036: Website, LinkedIn, Twitter
Texas 2036 Strategic Plan
AJ Rodriguez: LinkedIn, Twitter
John Hryhorchuk: LinkedIn, Twitter

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Austin Next Links
Austin Next Website 
Austin Next Twitter 
Austin Next LinkedIn
Austin Next YouTube 
Michael Scharf LinkedIn 
Jason Scharf LinkedIn 

Our music is “Tech Talk” by Kevin MacLeod. Licensed under Creative Commons 4.0 License

What is Austin Next?

Austin, Texas is adapting to and building the future in real time. The Austin Next Podcast is an exploration of our region's transformation into the next innovation powerhouse. We want to answer one basic question...What's next Austin?