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Summary: HB 2753 would establish an Excellence Fund for public health-related institutions with the purpose to provide additional funding for medical institutions that are seeking appropriations beyond what is allocated through student enrollment funding. To begin the Fund, each medical institution would have to transfer $2.5 million into the Fund. Then, each school would receive funds based on their ranking in a point system that takes into account various criteria measures. Once the initial source of funding is used, additional funding would need to be appropriated from General Revenue.
Analysis: HB 2753 would expand the scope of government by creating a fund that would require additional appropriations. While we approve incentivizing research excellence in health-related institutions, we oppose further burdening taxpayers. Therefore, we would approve the Excellence Fund concept for the 83rd Legislative Session since it allows the medical schools to voluntarily participate by using their non-formula funding that is appropriated to the Fund. The institutions, however, would need to continue using their non-formula funding and not seek future formula funding that would burden taxpayers. Instead, the schools should look for ways to prioritize their budgets based on current funding as well as seek private funding to make up unmet expenses. Therefore, at this time, due to non-formula funding, we stand neutral on 2753.