By Max Rodriguez, Backgate Website
Senator John Whitmire, who heads the Senate committee on criminal justice, made the statement via email to the Backgate just days ago. Whitmire made the statement to the Backgate after we asked why lawmakers where having second thoughts about stripping TDCJ and DPS of vital operational funding to help balance the states budget. Whitmire stated that he would not vote for any measure that would take money from the two agencies and would strain the two agencies operations. He went on to say that public safety was still the most important topic.
The latest news out of the legislature was the initiative to replace money cut from the TDCJ and DPS budgets. Money in excess of 323 million dollars. 32 million of that was said to be earmarked for saving the Central unit that was once said to be a lost cause by legislators. A move that is sure to rattle Sugarland investors and real estate brokers if it materializes. The cost of housing those offenders removed from Central, along with the impact of relocating hundreds of TDCJ employees from the facility may have played some part in renewed interest to save the historical facility. The fate of the Central unit won't be assured until after legislators close out the session.