Texas Legislature Agrees On $3.3 Billion Bonding Bill For University Construction Projects


Texas Legislature Agrees On $3.3 Billion Bonding Bill For University Construction Projects

The College of Texas system stands To understand $834.2 in campus enchancment tasks after the Texas … [+] legislature handed A mannequin new bonding invoice.


As a Outcome of the clock ticked down on its third particular session this yr, the Texas legislature handed a invoice Which might authorize Greater than $3.3 invoiceion in income bonds for dozens of enchancment and renovation tasks at public universities and well being amenities throughout the state.

Senate Bill 52 now goes to the desk of Governor Greg Abbott for his signature. Final week Abbott hadvert amended the particular session’s agenda at Lt. Governor Dan Patrick’s request To incorporate “legal guidelines To reinforce higher education,” permitting lawmakers to take up The disadvertvantage. (All by way of a particular session, legislators can’t move new legal guidelines that the governor has not Positioned on the agenda.)

The complete tab for The last invoice elevated from the Senate’s unique mannequin of about $3 invoiceion, after The house included Greater than $200 million in further tasks in its mannequin.

The invoice handed each chambers simply, with broadvert bipartisan assist. The vote Inside the house was 131-8, and in the Senate, the invoice handed by a margin of 30-1. The last deal was reveryed by way of a convention committee compromise that redistrihowevered A pair of of the funding. On The prime of the day, public institutions in every area in the state acquired a share of The money.

The invoice furtherly renames what hadvert uniquely been referred to as “tuition income bonds” to “capital enchancment assist” tasks. The change Signifies that The money borrowed for the tasks will lastly be coated by state funds. The invoice requires universities to report their enchancment contracts to the Legislative Price range Board. It furtherly establishes a Capital Enterprise Oversight Fee, Which might give the legislature elevated oversight over how The money is lastly spent.

Quoted Inside the Texas Tribune, Sen. Brandon Creighton, R-Conroe, the invoice’s author, said “This legal guidelines will eternally change and reform The biggest method we think about these capital tasks Finally.”

Supporters of the invoice pointed to elevated higher education enrollment of about 8% in the state since 2015, which was the last time the legislature hadvert accredited a invoice for tuition income bonds to pay for capital enhancements and enchancment.

“[These tasks] have the performance To current the Kinds of credentials that our workforce wants right now and going into The Prolonged time period, however Additionally they serve an financial objective by way ofout our state: creating jobs, each in enchancment and manufacturing,” Rep. Greg Bonnen, a Republican from Friendswood, said.

The convention committee allocations (in hundreds of hundreds of dollars) for The numerous public universities have been:

  • Texas A & M System – $727.4
  • College of Texas System – $854.2
  • College of Houston System – $339.5
  • Texas State College System – $422.6
  • U. of North Texas System – $273.3
  • Texas Womans’ College – $100
  • Stephen F. Austin College – $44.9
  • Texas Tech College – $299.4
  • Texas Southern College – $95.2
  • Texas State Technical System – $208.5

Amongst The numerous dozens of tasks, the College of Texas System, with an enrollment of Greater than 240,000 college students, will acquire $56 million to renovate the Microelectronics Evaluation Center at the J.J. Pickle Evaluation Campus, and an comparable quantity to replace the the Physics, Math, and Astronomy Constructing on UT’s primary campus in Austin.

The College of Texas Health Science Center at Houston was allotted $69.9 million for enchancment of a public well being education and research building, and the College of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio will acquire $59.9 million for enchancment of the Glenn Biggs Institute for Alzheimer’s & Neurodegenerative Illnesses Constructing.

As examples of its tasks, the Texas A&M College System, which enrolls about 150,000 college students at its numerous campuses, was allotted $56,1 million for enchancment of a medical veterinary teverying and research complicated; $33.7 million for A mannequin new engineering classroom and research building at its Galveston campus; and $44.9 million every for enchancment Of latest well being or educational buildings in San Antonio, Commerce, Corpus Christi, Texarkana and Laredo.