In the wee hours of the night, the Texas Legislature voted yes to approximately $3.3 Billion dollars for Texas universities and colleges to invest in capital building projects. Senate Bill 52 was approved before the third Special Session ended on October 19. Both the House and the Senate worked feverishly to come to an agreement in just a few days.
We can thank Senator Brandon Creighton, Chair of the Senate Higher Education Committee, and Representative Bonnen, Chair of the House Appropriations Committee, for leading the way, as well as Senator Jane Nelson, Chair of the Senate Finance Committee and Representative Jim Murphy, Chair of the House Higher Education Committee. Click here to see the massive action that took place on this topic in just seven days to understand how hard the Legislature worked on this.
TACT has been lobbying for these funds and meeting with all the offices named above for years to see this victory. This is what a portion of TACT membership dollars are used for. We look forward to the TACT Legislative Day on October 29 and thanking those Legislators and staffers who worked on the behalf of higher education. If you'd like to join the virtual meeting, click here. If you aren't a member, see all the benefits of TACT membership and join today.
One additional change the Legislature made was to change the term 'tuition revenue bonds' to 'capital construction assistance projects' and created new guidelines on how to allocate the funds. The process will be overseen by the Texas Comptroller's contract advisory team and reported to the Legislative Budget Board's contract database (see article on Special Session recap from the Texas Tribune).