Abbott Line-Item Vetoes State Funding For Dilapidated Eastside State Facility
A revitalization project for San Antonio’s Eastside community now bears the mark of Gov. Greg Abbott’s veto pen. The Governor line-item vetoed a section of the state budget that would’ve rehabilitated and repurposed the city’s G.J. Sutton facility.
The 1912 building was once a featured structure of the City of San Antonio skyline. But now city councilmember Allen Warrick says because of its dilapidated condition and lack of repairs the historic state building remains a shell of its former self.
“And the state pays about $375 thousand a year just to keep it in mothball status,” Warrick stressed.
An effort by San Antonio Democratic Rep. Ruth Jones McClendon to renovate the building was vetoed over the weekend by the Governor. Warrick says the city had been planning to use the money to revitalize parts of the Eastside and the downtown community.
“The city’s plan was to consolidate all of the state offices here in San Antonio that are in lease spaces, that would bring in auxiliary businesses, services companies, restaurants, retail. And it would also bring in people that would potentially want to live closer to where they work,” Warrick explained.
Warrick calls the building prime real estate less than a mile from the Alamo Complex that would greatly benefit San Antonio.
Attempting to explain his veto, Abbott says some of the projects in the budget have merit because they will reduce the cost to lease office space, while other projects needed more scrutiny. He has mentioned plans to have lawmakers study the possibility of setting up private-public partnerships for funding the repair and repurposing of these historic building during the interim and then maybe re-visiting the issue in 2017.