In 2005, the Texas Legislature created the Texas Emerging Technology Fund (“TET Fund”) as a way to help stimulate economic activity and development in Texas for emerging technologies. Emerging technology activity is eligible for funding if it will result in creation of high-quality new jobs in Texas, immediately or over a longer period, or if it has the potential to result in a medical or scientific breakthrough. House Bill 1188 was passed to clean up development and execution of the TET Fund. The bill enables additional investment vehicles, such as equity, debt instruments and grants, to be used to provide awards to participating companies. Additionally, the bill provides funding for the administration of the TET Fund and assists in the development of regional centers of innovation. The legislature appropriated $125 million for use by the TET Fund in fiscal years 2008-2009.
The legislature also appropriated an additional $120 million for the Texas Enterprise Fund (“TE Fund”), a deal-closing fund used to attract companies and bring new jobs to Texas. Since its inception in 2003, the TE Fund has assisted in generating 45,000 new jobs and more than $15 billion in Texas capital investments. A large portion of the grants from the TE Fund have gone to high-tech companies looking to relocate and expand in Texas.