Zaffirini supports Prop 1

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State Sen. Judith Zaffirini, former chair of the Senate Higher Education Committee, expressed support Tuesday for a ballot initiative that would increase property taxes in order to help fund a proposed UT medical school and teaching hospital.

Zaffirini, a UT alum whose district encompasses a portion of Travis County, said although she will not be voting in Travis County, she hopes her constituents will vote in favor of the ballot initiative. She said the proposed medical school would aid the University's mission of providing comprehensive education and serving Texas citizens.

Proposition 1 would increase property taxes collected by Central Health, Travis County’s hospital district, from 7.89 cents to 12.9 cents per $100 of assessed property value. The increase would contribute $35 million toward operations at the teaching hospital and purchase medical services there.

"This is an opportunity to enhance education at UT in a new arena," Zaffirini said.

She said she hopes those who oppose Proposition 1 will consider how establishing a UT medical school will improve medical services in Travis County.