Edinburg – The UTRGV School of Medicine may see it’s funds slashed, if the State Senate votes on reducing “special item”appropriations. The University has suggested a $60 to 70 Million dollar operating budget, however the State may only be able to provide a bit short of $25 million over two-years.
Local representatives, including a delegation from UTRGV are in Austin to contest the budget slash and appeal for additional funding. Meanwhile, now faced with reduced funding for the Medical School, the McAllen Monitor has sought to play the blame game, and took particular aim and local voters.
In an editorial piece released on Tuesday, The Monitor criticized the community for withdrawing support for School of Medicine by twice striking down a proposed “Healthcare Taxing District.” The last proposal was struck down by 72% of voters during Novembers General Election.
The Editorial commentary took particular exception with Texas Public Policy Council, and Texas Association of Realtors for undermining efforts in building public support for Proposition 1.
It would appear that The Monitor has selected memory, as opposition to Proposition 1 was primarily spear headed by the efforts of concerned citizens of the local community such as:
Mission Mayor Beto Salinas
The Objective Watchers of the Legal System (OWLS)
Vote No Hidalgo
These individuals and organizations above, coupled with local activist, and anti-Prop 1 candidates helped organize a strong and fortified opposition to the proposal. It would appear that The Monitor fails to read it’s own community comments on their Facebook post. If they did, then they would know that opposition was very loud, apparent, and broad.
In fact, with such a sounding defeat, The Monitor knowing they picked the wrong horse, waved a white flag and sought to reconcile with the readers by finally talking about some compromise on the issue. They admit that they use their editorial position in favor of the proposition. Therefore, why would they be bitter against those that opposed it?
So a resounding NO! to the Monitor Editorial for suggesting our impressionable minds were corrupted by anti-Prop 1 baddies from Austin.
We (community)didn’t want it. We fought it. We won.
The editorial is peppered with hear-say and weasel words. Example:
“Sadly, we are hearing multiple reports that some lawmakers in Austin believe there is no local community support for the UTRGV medical school. They cite the back-to-back failures of the community to implement a healthcare district in Hidalgo County, and they cite local municipalities reneging on funding commitments as examples of no community support.”
Which lawmakers? Chuy? Mr. Hinojosa and company are readily available to make statements and be on camera when things appear to be going right, but all of a sudden no one is available to make a statement when things didn’t materialize the way they had hoped.
Or this a situation of personal bias and feelings being slipped in behind a vague statement?
On the subject of municipalities reneging on Medical School payments, why doesn’t the editorial board ask why Mayor Jim Darling can balk at paying $2 million as promised to the School of Medicine, but has $250,000 to market to Mexico, because he’s worried wealthy Mexican nationals won’t visit, because our President said something mean.
Has the question above been addressed to Mayor Darling while out on the stump? Probably not.
I’m hopeful that the State legislature and representatives of the University can reach an agreement on a fair amount of funding. Despite political posturing on taxing districts, and who ultimately benefited from it, there still are medical students that need to be taught.
Perhaps the Monitor Editorial should have framed their commentary around this statement:
So we call on the community to reach out to Lt. Gov. Patrick and to other members of the Texas Senate and demonstrate our community support. We ask the community to invest a small amount of time by going to http://www.senate.state.tx.us and clicking on the drop-down menu that says “Senators” then click on “Members.”
Rather than use their commentary to air out their ire for the community, likely on the behest of the real “decade long movement” organizations who lost big back in November.