As you all know, the primary gun rights’ priorities in the Texas Legislature this session have been open carry and campus carry on the premises of college campuses. SB 11, the campus carry bill, is beginning to see opposition from the UT system itself. Costs for UT campuses across the state have been estimated by the system to cost $39 million over 6 years.
However, in an article in Thursday’s student newspaper from UT-Austin, The Daily Texan, a fiscal note submitted by the flagship university estimates no additional cost as a result of the campus carry bill. This is because dorm residents would incur the cost of storage themselves.
So where did the estimated costs from the UT system come from? The MD Anderson Cancer Center estimated that it would need $22 million to increase staff size and implement new security equipment, policy, procedures, and training. UT-Dallas, UT-El Paso, and UT-Rio Grande Valley also requested about $630,000 for security measures.
The bill would only allow on-campus housing locations to regulate storage of handguns, and the bill allows universities to prohibit handguns in any facility operating as part of licensed hospital. This begs the question: Why would MD Anderson, which has no on-campus housing and whose buildings are mostly hospital facilities, require money to spend on handgun storage facilities or new security measures in non-hospital buildings?
This is disgraceful. This is basically pork, added spending to a bill that is in no way related.