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Monday, September 18, 2006

UC Irvine's plans to start a law school dealt a setback

University officials plan to resubmit their proposal to address the state's concerns.

By MARLA JO FISHER
The Orange County Register

IRVINE UC Irvine has pulled its proposal to build a new law school, a week before a key state commission was set to consider a staff recommendation that it be rejected.

This is the latest major setback in UCI's longstanding quest to build a law school on its campus.

A preliminary report by the staff of the California Postsecondary Education Commission had recommended disapproval of the law school at the commission's Sept. 26 meeting.

The staff found that the proposal, as submitted, failed to satisfy three of the seven criteria necessary for the commission to recommend a major new program, including a public need for more lawyers.

"Based on information we received to date, the proposal did not meet the criteria," commission Executive Director Murray Haberman said.

UCI asked that the plan's consideration be delayed. Officials plan to rewrite and resubmit their proposal to address the concerns, Haberman said.

UCI had argued that its new school would fill a need for public-interest lawyers in the state.