Concerns about the placement of the new Carroll High School campus have now caught the attention of the House Armed Services Committee.
As the KRIS 6 News investigative team uncovered, local naval officials had expressed concern to CCISD about the placement of the new Carroll campus on Saratoga near Weber. The Navy says it’s in a crash zone for flight training at nearby Cabaniss Field.
A possible resolution to that dispute was discussed Friday morning when Congressman Filemon Vela (D-Brownsville) was in Corpus Christi to discuss his recent appointment to the powerful House Armed Services Committee, which helps set policy for national security and defense programs.
Because of that assignment, KRIS 6 News asked Vela about the Navy’s concerns.
“My understanding is that the Navy and the school district are in the process of bringing that to successful resolution,” Vela responded, adding that the two sides have been “talking frequently.”
Vela says he was just briefed on the issue Friday morning by the South Texas Military Task Force, of which Nueces County Judge Barbara Canales is a member.
“Encroachment is a serious issue. We just want to make sure that we’re protecting mission,” she said.
A big part of the local military mission is the first phase of flight training of Navy pilots at Cabaniss Field. Vela acknowledges and supports that mission and says if the two sides had not been talking, he would’ve been prepared to step in.
“We can make sure that the local municipalities or the local counties are talking to the right people inside the federal agencies, preferably before these decisions are made so that you don’t run into these sorts of situations,” Vela explained.
The congressman says he’ll continue to monitor these developments and advise in any way he can, although the final decision won’t be up to him.
“At the end of the day, those decisions are made on either end by either the navy or the local school district.”
In a statement sent to KRIS 6 News today, CCISD said:
“CCISD is committed to working in partnership with local officials, including the city, the Naval Air Station-Corpus Christi and the South Texas Military Task Force. We value our military community, and we are working closely with our community leaders to come to a mutually agreeable course of action regarding a new Mary Carroll High School.”