Senate Bill 1964
On March 10, 2017 Sen. Creighton, District 4, filed S.B. 1964 which would allow the Texas A&M board to “use or lease land in Jones State Forest for the construction of buildings or improvements for multipurpose uses, including academic, research, and private commercial uses”.
Sen. Creighton has made a public commitment to add language to "...protect 100% of the of the forest from being used by the University for anything other than its current use" and "prevent any changes to be made without public approval". However, the initial amendment to SB 1964 he has proposed does not include these provisions.
Save Jones State Forest has drafted a proposed amendment that would protect 100% of the forest and limit future use to the original intent of the forest.
Sen. Creighton has introduce new proposed language: "
A public hearing for SB 1964 was held on April 26 at 9:00 am at the Texas State Capital in Austin, TX. The amended bill was passed by the Higher Education committee on May 3. Sen. Creighton has agreed to amend the bill with the correct acreage and define the term "open" before it is voted on by the Senate.
On May 17, 2017 SB 1964 was passed by the Texas Senate; however, the final day for public hearing by the House committee on Higher Education was May 18th. The request for public hearing was not submitted until May 19th. SB 1964 will not move forward in this legislature.
3/10/2017 S.B. 1964 is Introduced
3/27/2017 Bill Moves to the Senate Committee on Higher Education
3/27/2017 Sen. Creighton Releases a Statement
Track S.B. 1964