In a 74 billion dollar state budget, education has been a top priority this legislative session. Besides millions allocated for teacher raises, about 14 million dollars is set to go to a project right here in Bay County.
The 14 million is set to go to Gulf Coast State College for a new STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) Education Center.
Dr. Jim Kerley, President of the college, says the current science facilities are outdated and were built back in the 1950's. The plans for the new facility would include modern labs, classroom space, office and training space. The building would be three levels and approximately 70 thousand square feet. Kerley says he is grateful for the support from our local representation and he's hoping with the Governor's push for STEM related projects, he will approve the money for this project as well.
"We appreciate what's been done already in the house and senate side and our legislators full support. Now we just need the support of the Governor to come forward and support this great facility," says Kerley. "I think its a no brainer because its academic and it absolutely fits in to what he talks about.
The legislative session is set to end Friday. Then the budget will go before the Governor.