House plan gives Evansville IU med school $36 million

A spending plan released Monday by Indiana House Republicans includes nearly twice as much money as Gov. Mike Pence proposed for a medical school campus in downtown Evansville.

The House GOP budget calls for $36 million in financing for the regional Indiana University medical school campus.

The state would cover $32 million for IU and project partners Ivy Tech Community College and the University of Southern Indiana. The private University of Evansville would account for $4 million. Partner schools plan health science programs at the medical school campus.

The Evansville Courier & Press reported Pence's budget includes $19.2 million in cash for construction of the campus.

Evansville Mayor Lloyd Winnecke said the House's funding increase "sends the message that legislators around the state understand its importance." Schools involved with the project had asked for nearly $50 million following the announcement of the site's location last year.

The House plan would include bond issuances to help pay for the project. State Rep. Tim Brown, R-Crawfordsville, said bonds make sense with interest rates low.

The state House Ways and Means Committee, which is chaired by Brown, could vote on the spending plan as soon as Wednesday.

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