San Antonio banker J. Bruce Bugg, Jr., appointed by Gov. Greg Abbott to the Texas Transportation Commission in 2015, has been named chairman of the five-member panel that oversees the Texas Department of Transportation.
Bugg succeeds Tryon Lewis, a former state representative and district judge from Odessa. The switch is unusual in that it comes in the middle of both of their six-year terms, and because Abbott appointed both men to the commission.
It was not immediately clear Tuesday why Abbott made the switch. The Abbott news release announcing it had just two sentences, along with a short bio of Bugg. Abbott’s office did not provide further comment.
“I can guarantee you that it’s not, ‘Tryon, you didn’t do a good job,’ ” said state Rep. Joe Pickett, an El Paso Democrat who formerly chaired the House Transportation Commission and was close to Lewis, a Republican, during the commissioner’s seven years in the House. “Tryon’s been one of the most active, involved chairmen since I’ve been in the Legislature. But I also know that Bugg has a closer relationship with the governor.”