“I respect the decision by the University of Texas System (UT) to not proceed with the development of a local campus on the 300 acres located in my Senatorial District. I met with UT administration and leadership several times, and questioned the recently-appointed regents regarding this purchase at their nomination hearing.
“My greatest concern regarding the UT land deal has always been about the nontransparent method by which the land was acquired and by the system’s inconsistent explanations for how the land was to be used. I am encouraged that UT listened to the voices of concern and decided to pull the plug on proceeding with the Houston development. I understand UT will now sell the land gradually to an entity or entities that will bring economic development and jobs to the surrounding community.
“UT has a very big stake in Senate District 13 and the greater Houston area, with MD Anderson Cancer Center and UT Health Science Center at Houston. UT’s success benefits all Texans, including Houston. In fact, the land in question lies in the heart of my district. But, there must be a methodical and inclusive process when decisions like this are made, especially when it affects our present universities. I look forward to continuing to work with UT System, the board of regents and Chairman William McRaven on ways to improve higher education in Texas and our community.”