Sen. Perry says TTU Regents vote not the end for West Texas vete - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Sen. Perry says TTU Regents vote not the end for West Texas veterinary school

Senator Charles Perry (Source: KCBD Video) Senator Charles Perry (Source: KCBD Video)
LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

There are new details surrounding the Texas Tech Board of Regent's unanimous vote Friday to delay the building of the Veterinary College in Amarillo.

The project was announced in December 2015. The school even received a $15 million grant last year from the Amarillo Economic Development Corporation.

Senator Charles Perry says the need for a veterinary school continues in west Texas, because of a lack of veterinarians in rural areas.

"I operate totally independent of trustees and anybody else," Perry said.

Senator Perry expressed his concern about the lack of rural veterinarians in the area, with Texas A&M as the only vet school in the state.

"We have multiple law schools for a reason, we have multiple med schools for a reason, we have multiple engineering schools for a reason, and the reason is, when you have 28 million people in a state and growing, that one facility is probably not gonna meet the needs," Perry said.

Leaving us to wonder why did the Texas Tech regents vote to not pursue funding of the vet school, despite the line item already being included in the House appropriations committee budget?

Vice Chancellor of Texas Tech University System, Brett Ashworth, said the reasoning is because the regents chose to be "good stewards" of limited state budget funds available for the next biennium.

Senator Perry says the regents decision leaves a void that needs to be filled.

"I think there will be a door opening for any opportunity to address the need in a way that was discussed. If not Tech, someone will get the opportunity to do it.," Perry said.

He said, "My job is to promote public policy, legislate public policy, and making sure that Texas will continue to be a state, especially in this 80 billion dollar industry, that these veterinarians are responsible for and our economy continues forward."

Perry adds that while Friday's decision has a big impact, that doesn't mean this is the end.

"Does this mean that there's not an opportunity for a vet school for rural Texas and west Texas going forward….I don't think so. Does it happen this legislative session, due to a lot of different reasons, probably not, but it does leaves the window open," Perry said.

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