Regents give go-ahead for new video board at Jones AT&T Stadium

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Updated: 8/10/2012 5:16 am
The Texas Tech University System Board of Regents is tackling a series of tasks at this week's meeting in El Paso, including a stadium upgrade and the hiring of an Interim President.

Regents have already given the go-ahead to move forward with one of the items, a high-definition video scoreboard at Jones AT&T Stadium. Athletic Director Kirby Hocutt said the "North Endzone Project" will be a tremendous enhancement for everyone's game day experience.

"This is an improvement that we have needed to make for some time, and we feel very fortunate that the funding sources are in place," Hocutt said. "And then, with today's approval from the Board of Regents, we are in a position to move forward and bring this element to Jones AT&T Stadium."

The Finance Committee also approved the 2013 budget pending the Board of Regents' final approval, which is expected Friday. Chief Financial Officer Jim Brunjes said after three years without pay raises, he is pleased to finally be able to reward faculty and staff with a four-percent increase.

"Our debt is at $580 million, which is almost $200 million-plus short of what an average debt is in our range," Brunjes said. "We, within the Texas Tech University System, do not build a building unless it is absolutely needed."

According to the predictions determined for higher education by the Ray Perryman Group in a 2007 report, the overall economic impact of the Texas Tech University System's budget on the region is approximately $12 billion.

The Board will likely name an Interim President Friday, as well as begin the search for a permanent replacement for Dr. Guy Bailey. Bailey accepted the presidency last month at his alma mater, the University of Alabama.

Regents will meet in executive session to discuss the interim candidate and work out the details of the interim President's contract before making a public announcement. A search committee will be put into place to find the permanent candidate. Chancellor Kent Hance said the search could take six to nine months, with a new hire hopefully in place by the end of the spring semester.

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