Senator Eddie Lucio, Jr.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, May 12, 2003
CONTACT: Doris Sanchez
Phone: (512) 463-0127

Sen. Lucio's efforts for RAHC funding prevail

AUSTIN, TX--Under a General Revenue appropriation in House Bill 7 for the U.T. Health Science Center in San Antonio, state Sen. Eddie Lucio, Jr., author of the bill that created the Regional Academic Health Center, announced today that the RAHC should receive $19.1 million in funds for the next biennium.

"I commend Sen.Teel Bivins, chair of the Finance Committee, and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst for their leadership in helping us secure this appropriation added during conference committee," said Sen. Lucio. "The promise of improved health care for South Texas and of recruiting doctors to an area that is severely underserved cannot be realized without these funds needed for developing this institution.

"I also commend President of the U.T. Health Science Center Dr. Francisco G. Cigarroa and his staff for all their efforts to help obtain this funding," added Sen. Lucio.

President Cigarroa was equally appreciative of Sen. Lucio. He noted, "I commend the leadership of Sen. Eddie Lucio for his strong support and hard work to expand professional health education and improve the quality of health care in the Rio Grande Valley."

HB 7 is the supplemental appropriations bill that passed in the House and is in the Senate Finance Committee, where it was heard today.

The RAHC will receive $10.7 million for Fiscal Year 2004 and $8.4 million for Fiscal Year 2005.

"This is a great first step toward ensuring that the RAHC is funded next biennium, and I will be monitoring the process to ensure that this appropriation is approved by both Chambers when the conference committee changes are up for approval," said Sen. Lucio.

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