5 things to know: Thursday - FOX34 Lubbock

5 things to know: Thursday

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Lieutenant Gov. Dan Patrick supports idea of Tech vet school, discusses funding

LUBBOCK, Texas - On higher education Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick said he's supported the idea of the Texas Tech vet school, but emphasizes Tech will have to foot the bill before the legislature will.

"First of all you have to find out who the new chancellor is. You have to find out what the regents want to do but, they're going to have to raise those dollars as they said the would," Patrick said.

Last month Senator Charles Perry said former Chancellor Robert Duncan's push for the vet school was one of the big reasons for his forced resignation. Dr. Tedd Mitchell is serving as interim until the board of regents name a new chancellor.

Dr. Mitchell said he expects the system to pursue a vet school vigorously.

County mulling new computer software with lawmakers split on timing

LUBBOCK, Texas - The county is contemplating a switch in software from Ki Corp to Tyler Technologies, carrying an expensive price tag of $4 million and some potential roadblocks.

Precinct One Commissioner Bill McCay said the county conducted a survey recently to gauge its standing in cost-efficient technology, which found pressing issues with work productivity. 

"The survey pointed out some areas that we needed horsepower or more hardware for folks to get their job done in order to get them clocked out, not taking so long to clock out," McCay said.

Jason Corley, the republican candidate for precinct two commissioner, said a breach of contract with Ki Corp could lead to an expensive lawsuit the county does not need. He said the county is better off spending this money on the sheriff's department.

USDA's releases Market Facilitation Program aimed at helping producers

LUBBOCK, Texas - The USDA is picking winners and losers according to agricultural lobbyists in our area. They're referring to the $12 billion program package the department's using to off-set losses from trade tariffs, at least three programs are now available to producers including federal food purchases and subsidies.

Under the Market Facilitation Program or MFP, producers who grow a half-dozen commodities will get subsidies for their crops; cotton, corn, dairy, hog, sorghum, soybean, and wheat. The USDA will calculate the total production multiplied by what it calls an MFP rate and pay out at least once, a second time if needed. It's a short term relief strategy to protect agricultural producers while the administration works on trade deals.

The agricultural marketing service will buy up to $1.2 billion in commodities, those will go to nutrition assistance programs. The agricultural trade promotion program will use $200 million to open new markets.

Searing Trump op-ed sets off wild guessing game on author

WASHINGTON (AP) - An opinion piece in The New York Times by an anonymous senior administration official claiming to be part of a "resistance" working "from within" to thwart President Donald Trump's "worst inclinations" has set off a wild guessing game on the author's identity.

In an extraordinary move, Trump tweeted Wednesday that if "the GUTLESS anonymous person does indeed exist, the Times must, for National Security purposes, turn him/her over to government at once!"

White House officials didn't immediately respond to a request to elaborate on Trump's call for the writer to be turned over to the government.

Two people familiar with the matter say Trump has demanded that aides identify the leaker. The two were not authorized to speak publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Harris challenges Kavanaugh on Mueller probe

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Democrats' final questioner of the night engaged in a cryptic exchange with Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh about whether he has talked with anyone at a law firm about special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation.

The questions Wednesday from Sen. Kamala Harris of California centered on the law firm founded by Marc Kasowitz, who has represented President Donald Trump. Kavanaugh said he couldn't think of any such conversations, but he'd need to see a list of lawyers who work at the firm.

Harris challenged Kavanaugh's answer. She said she thinks Kavanaugh was "thinking of someone and you don't want to tell us."

She did not say why she was asking the question, but said she would follow up on it. Judiciary Committee Republicans complained that the question was unfair.

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