AUSTIN, TEXAS (KVEO NEWS CENTER 23) — Today, Senate Bill 24, which would create a new University of Texas System university with a medical school in South Texas, passed unanimously out of the Senate Committee on Higher Education.
“Today is an important first step in ensuring the Valley receives its first Tier One research university," Senator Eddie Lucio, Jr. (D-Brownsville) said. "I applaud the members of the Higher Education Committee for their votes today. Few Legislatures have been granted the opportunity to join with academics to create of a new university. Senate Bill 24 is history-making for South Texas and will be transformative to the region for future generations. Through their actions today, the Committee members help correct the inequity that exists in this economically-distressed area of the state."
The filing of Senate Bill 24 was announced last month in Austin. The bill is authored by Senators Lucio, Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa, Judith Zafririni, and Kel Seliger. Since then, sixteen other senators have joined the bill as coauthors.
Now passed out of committee, Senate Bill 24 will next need to be considered by the full Senate before passage to the Texas House of Representatives for consideration and ultimate passage.
Senate Bill 24 is a companion to House Bill 1000 by State Representative Rene Oliveira, which was heard before the House Committee on Higher Education late last month.
Photo Caption: (Right to left) Senator Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa, Edinburg Mayor Richard Garcia, University of Texas - Pan American President Robert Nelson, McAllen City Commissioner and Mayor-Elect Jim Darling, Hidalgo County Judge Ramon Garcia, and Harlingen Mayor Chris Boswell after passage of Senate Bill 24 by the Senate Committee on Higher Education