Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison: Victoria economic development is on the move

U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison visits with Thomas Yantis, left, and Victoria County Judge Don Pozzi on Tuesday at the PumpHouse Riverside Restaurant and Bar. The Victoria Chamber of Commerce hosted a reception to thank Hutchison for her service.
  • Kay Bailey Hutchison, a brief biography

    Grew up in La MarqueGraduated from the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Texas School of LawFormer member of the Texas House of RepresentativesFormer Texas State TreasurerUnited States Senator from ...

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  • Kay Bailey Hutchison, a brief biography

    Grew up in La MarqueGraduated from the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Texas School of LawFormer member of the Texas House of RepresentativesFormer Texas State TreasurerUnited States Senator from 1993 to presentSource: http://hutchison.senate.gov

From oil activity to growth in higher education and industrial expansion, economic development is on the move in Victoria.

That was the message Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison delivered at the PumpHouse Riverside Restaurant and Bar.

"I just see great things in the future," she said. "So I'm excited."

The Victoria Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday hosted a reception honoring the senator for her years of service to the state and nation.

Hutchison commended local leaders for "taking the bull by the horns" and preparing for growth at the Port of Victoria and the like.

She said she and her staff worked extensively with area ports on both security and dredging issues.

Aviation remains a big issue for Victoria, she said, noting Colgan's recent decision to end its essential air service contract with Victoria.

The Victoria Regional Airport is the only one statewide that remains part of the essential air service program, she said, noting she would do what she could to help Victoria secure another airline.

"My goodness, this place is gonna need air service continuing," she said. "We'll work with you any way that we can."

State Rep. Geanie Morrison said she has supported Hutchison since she first ran for office and attended Tuesday's event to show her appreciation.

"She's a great friend and a great friend to the state of Texas," she said.

Hutchison and her staff have always been available and willing to help the Crossroads on various issues, said Victoria County Judge Don Pozzi. Those range from economic development to the proposed Exelon nuclear plant, to the Port of Victoria and more.

"She is going to be missed by the nation, state and certainly Victoria County," Pozzi said. "We thank her for what she's done and she's always welcome here."

Hutchison said she always enjoyed working with the Crossroads and made many friends through the years. One of the more difficult aspects of leaving office, she said, is no longer being able to travel the state as she has.

But her work isn't over just yet.

The longtime senator holds her position until the year's end, she said, and has plenty to do in the meantime.

"I am not going to stop until the last day of my term," she said.