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Jun 22, 2011 6:29 AM by Lauren Wilson & AP

Legislative hurdle for New Orleans hospital killed

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - An attempt to add legislative roadblocks to construction of a new public medical center in New Orleans failed to gain passage in the House, killing the proposal for the session.
The proposal, rejected in a 54-37 House vote against it, would have required another layer of legislative approval from both the full House and Senate before dollars could be borrowed or contracts could be made to build the hospital.
Supporters said lawmakers needed to review how the facility could affect the state's budget. Opponents said further hurdles would add unnecessary bureaucracy.
About $750 million is available for the medical center without borrowing. The hospital is proposed to cost $1.2 billion, though conversations continue about whether it should be scaled back.

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