Legislative panels approve South Texas university

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Associated Press

Posted on March 7, 2013 at 6:06 PM

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — House and Senate lawmakers have given a boost to creating a new, unified campus for the University of Texas System in the Rio Grande Valley, including a medical school.

In separate votes Wednesday, the House and Senate higher education committees approved bills merging Texas-Pan-American in Edinburg and Texas-Brownsville into a single university. Those bills now to go the full House and Senate for consideration.

A key element to the plan is the medical school, which could bring hundreds of doctors to South Texas where they are desperately needed.

Texas system regents have already committed $100 million to the project, but the merger still needs legislative approval. The university would have a predicted enrollment of about 28,000.

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