NPT Capitol: Pickett: Texas Tech 3rd building “going to be tough”
While maintaining that El Paso was “doing very well” out of the Texas legislative session so far, state Rep. Joe Pickett admitted Wednesday that the prospects of funding a third building at the El Paso campus of the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center were not looking good.
“Its going to be tough for that third building at Texas Tech just because of the budget … but as far as our agenda and issues for El Paso, we’re gonna do fine. There are bigger things out there that everybody thinks is important,” said Pickett during a brief lunchtime conversation at the Capitol, referencing such major issues as dealing with the stimulus package, funding CHIP, and Texas Department of Transportation funding formulas.
“We have been extremely successful on the Texas Tech medical school but I do think there has been some push-back when we’re $9 billion short (in the state budget),” he said. “And the actual class hasn’t started this year and we’re asking for a building that’s not research and is not classroom facility. I think it might have to wait until next session … what we are going to get this session is operating dollars to open the school and run that class for the next two years.”
The different El Paso institutional agendas have the third building at different levels of priority, whereas the legislative delegation’s agenda puts it after the goal of UTEP becoming a Tier 1 university — another item likely to have to wait for another session. [link]
— Ben Wright