Lawmakers approved establishing the University of North Texas at Dallas College of Law during the 2009 legislative session after years of near misses for the Dallas delegation. North Texas lawmakers got only a fraction of the funding they desired but heralded it as a success anyway.
They'd been fighting an uphill battle against Texas' Higher Education Coordinating Board, which has seen no urgent need for a North Texas law school.
The UNT Law School will inhabit Dallas' historic Old City Hall building, and the city offered more than $14 million in bond funds to ready the facility, plus $2 million in start-up costs.
In the 2007 legislative session, the UNT law school was defeated on a technicality by one of the delegation's own members. The law school had been tacked on as an amendment to an eminent domain bill that Rep. Yvonne Davis, D-Dallas, opposed. She said she had to defeat the eminent domain bill even though the law school was collateral damage.