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On Tuesday, August 12, 2014 Hidalgo County Commissioners Court was presented with a Petition requesting the election for the creation of the Hidalgo County Hospital District. In accordance with Chapter 1122 of the Texas Special Districts Local Laws Code, the Commissioners Court accepted the Petition and adopted an Order calling the election for November 4, 2014. The Commissioners Court also approved an initial tax rate for the District of 8 cents per $100 valuation.
If approved in November, the Hidalgo County Hospital District will support the new University of Texas Rio Grande Valley Medical School, will be responsible for indigent healthcare in Hidalgo County, and will pursue additional federal and state funds for healthcare services.
Commissioners Court also approved a motion in support of a 9 member Board of Directors for the proposed Hidalgo County Hospital District. The breakdown for the proposed board is as follows: 5 members appointed by Commissioners Court, 4 appointments by the cities defined in the current statute (1 by each of the entities delineated in the statute - McAllen, Edinburg, Mission, and Pharr).
The Commissioners Court then proceeded to approve a Memorandum of Understanding to be executed by the County and participating cities for proposed legislative changes to the Hidalgo County Hospital District. Through this agreement, the entities commit to not appoint any Board Members until legislation by Senator Hinojosa is passed that includes additional safeguards and checks and balances systems including ratification of the District's Budget and Tax Rate by the Hidalgo County Commissioners Court and inclusion of the Texas Rollback Provision. The agreement also includes capping the District’s maximum tax rate at 25 cents per $100 property valuation.