The County Information Program of the Texas Association of Counties was formed by the TAC Board in 1998 for the purpose of collecting, maintaining, and disseminating county-level and county-related data. The Project has a broad scope and has expanded its mission since its inception. At this time, the major components of the Project are:
The County Database
The Project has the responsibility for the development of a database of county-level and county-related data including local government structure and programs, county financial data, demographic data, taxes, economic data, etc. The initial database has been created and is going through its evaluation period. At this point, the primary benefit of the database is that it pulls together several different sources of county information into one, searchable, database.
The Financial Data Project
County financial data is the single-most requested and important type of county data. With the exception of what the Census Bureau is able to collect from Texas counties, this data is virtually non-existent. Although it resides in each county, it is not maintained in a way that makes it easy to locate or analyze. The Project, working with the Texas County Auditors’ Association, the Texas Association of Budget and Planning Administrators, and the United States Bureau of the Census has begun an initiated a survey to collect "apples-to-apples" county government revenue and expenditure data.
Annual Survey of County Government
Information on county government structure and programs at the county level is another set of data that is lacking but greatly sought. This is the, "everything we ought to know about Texas counties, but don't" data category. The Project has, with the assistance of the Texas Agriculture Extension Service, begun another initiative to collect this data. We are in the stage of gathering questions and preparing the questionnaire. The County Extension Agents will collect the data. If you have a suggestion for a question or subject that ought to be covered in the survey, contact us.
Geographic Information Systems
Geographic Information System (GIS) software and information are spectacular tools for a variety of purposes including emergency response, planning, and preparing thematic views of data. The Project is working toward offering many, if not most, of its data in a GIS-readable format.
County Research Library
The Project has the responsibility for establishing and maintaining a County Research Library. This is your library, so let us know if there is anything in particular that you would like to see included.