From the Office of State Senator Royce West - District 23

For Immediate Release
CONTACT: Kelvin Bass
(512) 463-0123
January 31, 2003

State Senator Royce West's committee assignments emphasize education

AUSTIN - State Senator Royce West (D-Dallas) is pleased by his appointment as Chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Higher Education. He was chosen for the position by Texas' newly elected Lt. Governor David Dewhurst. The announcement came Thursday, January 16, 2003 as part of the Lt. Governor's Senate Committee assignments. Senator West was also named Vice Chairman of the Senate Education Committee.

"It comes as no surprise to anyone that I am energized by my selection as chair of the Higher Education Committee" said Senator West. "Throughout my decade of service in the Texas Senate, working to assure that Texas citizens, the young and not so young, have access to quality and affordable institutions of higher learning has always been among my top priorities. My appointment to Senate Education will also help me to focus on the critical issue of public school finance."

Senator West was also selected to serve on Senate Finance, a committee whose role looms larger than ever as it grapples with the state's anticipated near $10 billion budgetary shortfall. Senator West's committee assignments were completed by his being named to seats on the Senate Jurisprudence and Senate Health and Human Services Committees.

"This Session comes with budgetary challenges that many say have not been seen since the years surrounding the oil crisis of the early 1980's," said Senator West. "However, by my selection to the Finance, Education and Health and Human Services Committees, my efforts will be aimed at making sure that changes or cuts in programs that will be necessary to help balance the budget will not be to the detriment of those most dependent on state services."

The 78th Legislature marks Senator West's sixth legislative session since his election to the Texas Senate in November 1992. He has served previously on the Senate Education Committee during the 73rd, 74th, 75th and 76th Legislative Sessions.

This Session also marks his return to the Senate Subcommittee on Higher Education and Senate Finance. Senator West was chairman of the Subcommittee on Higher Education during the 1999 - 76th Session. It was during that Session that he was able to garner the support that led to the creation of the University of North Texas System Center at Dallas, now the University of North Texas Dallas Campus.

For more information, please contact Kelvin Bass at 512-463-0123.