EDINBURG, Texas – What can the Rio Grande Valley expect from the 87th Legislative Session that starts in Austin, Texas, on Jan. 12, 2021?

State Sen. Juan Hinojosa and state Reps. Terry Canales and R.D. ‘Bobby’ Guerra gave their best guesses during a webinar hosted by the Edinburg Chamber of Commerce on Dec. 3. The event was moderated by former state Rep. Veronica Gonzales, who is now a vice president at UT-Rio Grande Valley.

Among the topics discussed were the budget deficit, transportation funding, expanding Medicaid, a new speaker for the Texas House of Representatives, additional monies for UTRGV, tuition revenue bonds, the digital divide, and whether the general public will be allowed into the state Capitol, given the coronavirus pandemic. 

Sponsors of the webinar included AT&T, DHR Health, UTRGV, Texas Gas Service, City of Edinburg, City of Pharr, Texas National Bank, Carranza Development , Superior Properties, South Texas Health System, Oscar Gonzalez CPA & Associates, and CJE Construction LLC.

Dr. Guy Bailey, president of UTRGV, phoned in to the webinar and asked the legislators about tuition revenue bonds.

Bailey said: “Do you know, our medical school and, in fact, all of our health programs are growing very rapidly. We have a new doctorate in podiatric medicine that will be starting soon. To really implement all the new programs that we do, we need space and I wondered if there are any opportunity for tuition revenue bonds this spring? TRBs would help us build the facilities we need as we bring these new programs online.”

Sen. Hinojosa responded to Bailey’s question. He said: “From discussions that have taken place on the Senate side, because of interest rates being so low right now and because of the deficit we are facing with our budget, it would be a good time to pass revenue bonds, TRBs, so, I think it has support. I think right now you will see much more intense discussion. We just need also for the universities and colleges throughout the state to put a little bit of pressure, if you will, on their legislators and state senators that represent them in the legislature. So, I think it is very doable.”

Quality journalism takes time, effort and…. Money!

Producing quality journalism is not cheap. The coronavirus has resulted in falling revenues across the newsrooms of the United States. However, The Rio Grande Guardian is committed to producing quality news reporting on the issues that matter to border residents. The support of our members is vital in ensuring our mission gets fulfilled. 

Can we count on your support? If so, click HERE. Thank you!

Keep on top of the big stories affecting the Texas-Mexico. Join our mailing list to receive regular email alerts.

Sign-up for the latest news

By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: . You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact