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Sat May 30, 2015, 05:30 PM

Negotiators agree to create new research fund, close technology fund

Texas House and Senate negotiators reached agreement Saturday on two signature initiatives of Gov. Greg Abbott: establishing a fund to recruit prominent academic researchers to Texas universities and abolishing one used to assist innovative startup companies.

The proposals are related because $40 million of the unspent balance of the Emerging Technology Fund would be conveyed to the proposed Governorís University Research Fund. The new fund would provide matching grants to help Texas institutions of higher education recruit Nobel laureates and members of the National Academy of Sciences and its sister organizations in engineering and medicine.

The Republican governor proposed the initiatives in January following an audit that criticized some of the technology fundís operations and some high-profile bankruptcies of startups it had helped. That combination soured state leaders on using taxpayersí dollars to underwrite risky ventures.

Part of the technology fundís balance would go to the Texas Enterprise Fund, a deal-closing fund used to encourage companies to relocate or expand in Texas.

Read more: http://www.statesman.com/news/news/state-regional-govt-politics/negotiators-agree-to-create-new-research-fund-clos/nmRdQ/

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